Partnership News and Views/Putting the last 20 years into words

Posted by on March 12, 2018

MARQUETTE – As you know, the LSCP is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year. Below is the speech I gave at our annual dinner, trying to put the last 20 years into words.

“How can you sum up 20 years? How do you convey exactly how you feel about the organization you basically grew up in? The one you have so much pride in that the advice “don’t take it personally” or “it’s just a job” is really tough to swallow and makes you work harder?

I have been blessed to be a part of this organization since the beginning. I have worked with the most amazing people; learned, and still learn, from the best of the best in our region. I’ve been provided the training and resources to be successful and, at the end of the day, truly believe that I am part of a team that makes a difference in our community. Does it get much better than that for a day job?

From the beginning I have worked with, and continue to work with amazing community leaders, some who have passed on like Msgr. Cappo, Elwood Mattson and Phyllis Maki. They were always incredibly supportive of the organization and me personally. I have spent countless hours with founding members like John Marshall, who when at the LS&I Railroad, allowed the LSCP staff to move into his building while we did some major renovations. Mike Skytta, has always been such a strong leader. And of course, mentor Don Ryan who taught me everything I know about being in front of a camera, handling a microphone and never being afraid to put myself out there.

Imagine being young in your career and hanging out with these community icons!

Early on, the board appointed a management team of board members to manage the organization with lead staff. These folks met weekly with lead staff for years (and I truly mean years). Later we moved from that volunteer-driven model to a staff-driven model, and in 2010, to a CEO model.

Our board chairs, Msgr. Cappo, John Marshall, Tom Edmark, Dennis Smith and now Brett French have been nothing but amazing. They truly support the mission of the LSCP and commit a considerable amount of time and resources to make sure the organization is strong and sustainable. Add to that an impressive list of board members, task force volunteers and an incredible staff, and it is a recipe for success.

Don’t get me wrong, like any organization, we have our growing pains, our ups and our downs. We have learned that we can’t be all things to all people, so we had to find our niche, stay in our lane and excel in the space that is our unique value proposition.

Truly, I am grateful that you all took a chance on a young girl from Negaunee, 20 years ago, to be a part of, and now lead this organization.

But at the end of the day, it’s not about me, but rather the amazing journey our community embarked on by coming together in the name of economic development 20 years ago making it clear that we do not wait for someone else to fix our problems, we hit challenges head on. Working together to overcome challenges certainly isn’t easy or everyone would be doing it. And collectively, we have been doing it.

It takes hope, faith and trust in one another and the ability to cross artificial borders to work collaboratively between sectors, communities, counties and organizations in order to be successful today. You can see that as a true partnership, we are accomplishing that.

Here’s to the next 20 years!”

Thank you to all who attended and contributed in any way to our 20th anniversary celebration. Your commitment to the LSCP is greatly appreciated. A special thank you to our sponsors Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan; Eagle Mine; UP Health System-Marquette; Bennett Media Group; Champion Inc.; Landmark Inn; Ojibwa Casinos; SEMCO ENERGY Gas Company; Upper Michigan Energy Resources Corporation; Upper Peninsula Health Plan; VAST; 44 North; Accident Fund; American Transmission Company; Checker Transport; Kandler Rheed Khoury & Muchmore; Kendricks, Bordeau, Keefe, Seavoy & Larsen, P.C.; Renewable Energy Systems Americas Inc.; Envirologic Technologies Inc.; Fraco Concrete Products; Honor Credit Union; Iron Range Agency; Marquette Community Federal Credit Union; River Valley Bank; Sawyer International Airport; Shops of Marquette; Superior Extrusion Inc.; Upper Peninsula Power Company; U.P. Insurance Agency Inc.; A. Lindberg & Sons; Bell Financial; Double Trouble Entertainment; Radio Results Network; WLUC TV6/Fox UP; and Knots & Kisses Events.

Amy Clickner, CEO, writes a bi-weekly column for the Mining Journal.