CEDAM’s AmeriCorps Members
AmeriCorps State Members
Chanavia Clayton, Homeownership Assistance Specialist, Southwest Economic Solutions
Chanavia is a recent graduate from Specs Howard school of media arts with a degree in Graphic Design. With passions in financial literacy, equality, and mental, physical, and emotional health, she decided to become an AmeriCorps member because she saw it as an opportunity to learn, grow and help others, while also helping herself. Chanavia is committed to being a lifelong learner, so when she is not serving she can be found helping others, building memories, cultivating relationships, or learning a new skill.
Chelsea Davis, Community Connections Specialist, CLEARCorps Detroit
Chelsea is a Detroit native who studied Social Sciences at Aquinas College. Chelsea is passionate about eliminating educational disparities amongst minority groups. One of her greatest accomplishments includes supporting her daughter to receive a full scholarship to Hamilton College. Chelsea chose to serve with CLEARCorps because she identifies closely with their mission and felt that she was at a point in her life where service made sense. When not serving, she can be found watching her daughter swim competitively or tandem biking. Her personal motto is “to whom much is given, much is required.”
Lydia Dominguez, Program & Volunteer Engagement Member, Community Action House
Lydia studied at Grand Rapids Community College, where she was inducted into Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society. As a certified community health worker, she is passionate about homelessness and food security. When she is not serving, you can find her spending time with her family, going for walks, or doing arts and crafts. Lydia joined AmeriCorps as a way of giving back to her community. Her personal motto is ”If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll get what you have always gotten, so make a change.”
Maria Hess, Stability Services Coordinator, Lighthouse
Maria is a student at Liberty University. She majors in social work and minors in psychology. Upon graduation in December, she will be pursuing her MSW. While in pursuit of her bachelor’s degree she has gotten married, lived in three different states, and changed majors — a testament to her perseverance. Maria is passionate about helping children and loved the time she spent doing an internship in an adoption services at a foster care agency. Through a senior internship at Lighthouse and seeing the needs of the clients they serve, she developed a passion for serving there as well and looks forward to continuing in that through this AmeriCorps position! Maria’s personal motto, simply put, is “do whatever you can to help others.”
Sara Hurt, Emergency Food Coordinator, Lighthouse
Sara graduated from Schoolcraft Community College with an Associate in Science. She currently attends Walsh College and is pursuing a bachelor’s in Information Technology with a concentration in Business Information Systems. Sara is passionate about the P.A.W.S project and anything involving animals. She joined AmeriCorps as a way to get out of her comfort zone and give back to her community. When she is not serving she can be found out in nature or playing video games. A fun fact about Sara is that she can juggle!
Micah Lee-Morris, VITA Coordinator, Capital Area United Way
Micah is currently a Junior at Michigan State University studying Social Relations and Policy with a minor in Business. A proud student, she has spent consecutive semesters on the Dean’s List. Micah’s passions include financial empowerment, education, opportunity for neglected communities, and ending racial and wealth disparities. She is also passionate about promoting food security and equal access for everyone to healthy foods, ending homelessness and reducing unemployment. She decided to become an AmeriCorps member for professional development and to directly impact her community through initiatives she is passionate about.
Her personal motto is “progress, not perfection” because she finds that when you get rid of the idea of perfection, you are happier and more productive.
Renee McGarry, Garden Programming Coordinator, Edible Flint Educational Farm
A proud Master Gardener, Renee volunteered with Edible Flint Educational farm for two years before becoming an AmeriCorps member. Unsurprisingly, her passions include protecting the pollinators/bees, climate change, and reducing food insecurity. In her spare time, you will find Renee gardening, beekeeping, knitting, or spending time with her grandchildren. Renee studied photography at Mott Community College, so you may also find her spending time with her camera, when not serving. She lives by her personal motto of “be your best self each day.”
Kenitha Pearson, AmeriCorps Member, Wayne Metropolitan Community Action Agency
Kenitha brings a passion for service to her position at Wayne Metro that’s evident as she has recently begun her third term of AmeriCorps with CEDAM! Kenitha says that being an AmeriCorps member has made her more professional and has provided hands-on training in the workforce. She loves working with people in nonprofit and helping her community out of poverty.
Missy Rogers, Food Pantry Coordinator, TrueNorth Community Services
Missy joins CEDAM’s AmeriCorps program with many years of experience in the caregiving field and is working on a bachelor’s degree in history. Her passion for people is evident by her reason for joining AmeriCorps- to help others and make them feel important. On her time off, Missy enjoys spending time with her family, working on projects around the house, and sitting on the deck drinking coffee. She loves seeing the smiles on her family’s faces and spending time with her kids and grandbabies. Missy brings her personal motto with her to service every day- “Listen to that voice pulling you toward your gift and you will find your purpose!”
Michelle Tule, Financial Resource Navigator, Telamon Corporation
Michelle comes to the team as an AmeriCorps alum- she’s serving for a second term with CEDAM’s AmeriCorps! The accomplishment she’s most proud of is preventing a home from being foreclosed on. Michelle is passionate about human and civil rights; ending poverty, homelessness, and hunger; and education. In her free time, you can find her visiting new places with friends and family. Her life motto is, “It only takes one person to change your life. You never know when you will meet this person so be kind to everyone.”
AmeriCorps VISTA Members
Kim Ellerthorpe, Program and Volunteer Coordinator, Washtenaw Literacy
Kim is serving her second year with Washtenaw Literacy, though this is her first time as a CEDAM AmeriCorps member. The collaborative nature of the organization means her position does many things, but her primary focus is on program coordination and volunteer management. Kim is passionate about many causes including conservation and the environment, education and literacy, social justice, LGBTQ+ awareness, just to name a few. She brings a wealth of education to the position, with a Bachelor’s degree in Theater and English and a Master’s in Elementary Education from Indiana University. When not serving, Kim enjoys spending time with her family and traveling.
Danieh Foltz, Bailey Park
Originally from Erie, Pennsylvania, Danieh joined AmeriCorps because she wanted to get to know her new community better and strengthen grassroots development efforts. She studied International Politics, with a minor in Women and Gender Studies. Her passions include the LGBTQ+ movement, the environment, sustainability, and sexual health/education. No stranger to relocating, Danieh once moved to New York by herself after receiving an internship at the UN! When she is not serving you can find her working as a barista, reading, watching movies, and hanging out with friends.
Faith Harris, Stewardship Fellow, Brilliant Detroit
Faith is a returning CEDAM AmeriCorps member with Brilliant Detroit. Her educational background includes Engineering Science from Wheeling [Jesuit] University and Environmental and Sustainability Engineering from Wayne State University. Faith is passionate about climate change, racial equity, environmental racism, and pollution. She is proud to educate people about social justice and climate change issues. She joined AmeriCorps as a way to make a lasting change in her community, while also getting the chance to meet like minded individuals. When not serving, you can find Faith reading about plants or playing with her two cats. Her personal motto is “reach for the moon.”
Olivia Mussell, Community Foundation for Oceana County
Olivia received her undergraduate degree from Miami University of Ohio. Her passions include women’s empowerment, civil rights, and climate change. Olivia enjoys cooking for others, reading, and enjoying the outdoors whether that is hiking, gardening, or long walks with her dog. Her personal motto is “time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time.”
James Rawson, Donor Coordinator and Website Manager, Allen Neighborhood Center
As a proud Eagle Scout and honorary member of the Central Michigan University Student Social Work Association, James brings a wealth of experience to his position at Allen Neighborhood Center. Before his time at CMU (Fire Up Chips!), he spent time moving coast to coast- and as far as Germany during his childhood- and finally landed in the greater Lansing Area. James’s most recent accomplishment was implementing a competitive food drive that benefited the CMU food pantry. His idea gathered more than 2000 food and personal items and monetary donations. James is passionate about mental/neurological disability advocacy as well as food insecurity work. His personal motto is “Plot, Plan, Strategize, Organize, Mobilize” – Michael Render
Katie Steeno, Community Outreach Liaison, Habitat for Humanity Capital Region
Katie joins CEDAM’s AmeriCorps program fresh off another term of AmeriCorps service. Last year, Katie spent a year giving back to the northern Michigan community as an AmeriCorps member with the Together We Prepare Red Cross program. Service is very important to Katie, and she chose to join Habitat for Humanity Capital Region to continue to build on her knowledge base and gain professional experience with the organization. In her free time, Katie enjoys writing to her family and friends- especially as she relocated to a new city for her second term of service! Katie is most proud of herself for taking the leap to join AmeriCorps and give back rather than following a more traditional and safe path. Her personal motto is “Make today a happy day.”