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2012 Grand Visionaries Honored for Community Contributions

Media Release                                  
For Immediate Release                                                                            

Date: October 12, 2012
Media Contact:

Dan Boss, Program Publicity Specialist
Voice: 231-929-5047



2012 Grand Visionaries Honored
for Community Contributions


Northwest Lower Michigan—The Grand Vision CORE group named two individuals, two couples, and two organizations as recipients of the 2012 Grand Visionary awards at a series of Community Action Updates held in each of the six Grand Vision counties during the first two weeks of October. The award recognizes residents who engage the community in activities that further The Grand Vision principles.


The 2012 Grand Visionary Award winners are:

· Antrim County - Joe Short and Leah Hannan, Short's Brewing Company. Recognized for supporting local food systems, preserving our natural assets, and helping to create vibrant local communities.

· Benzie County – Benzie Bus. Recognized for collaboration with other organizations and a commitment to a regional multi-transportation system.

· Grand Traverse County – Wayne Kladder, Acme Township Supervisor. Recognized for his leadership in acquiring shoreline property and nurturing partnerships for the Acme Shoreline Project.

· Kalkaska County – George and Sally Shetler, Shetler Family Dairy. Recognized for their commitment to sustainable agricultural practices and community involvement.

· Leelanau County - Ian Plamondon, Suttons Bay High School class of 2012. Recognized for his vision, persistence and dedication  in the development of the Suttons Bay disc golf course at Herman Park.

· Wexford County – Baker College of Cadillac. Recognized for responding to the needs of the community by developing an Agriculture Technology program.


Along with the awards, the Community Action Updates highlighted projects from each county in the last year that advance The Grand Vision. Projects from all six counties have resulted in $10 million worth of investments in the region. Funding for the projects comes from a variety of sources, including national foundations and federal and local grants.

This year's Grand Vision Community Action Updates were made possible by a $15,000 Smart Growth Grant from the National Association of REALTORS® with support from the Traverse Area Association of REALTORS® (TAAR).


For more information visit the website,


About The Grand Vision:
The contentious environment surrounding the once-planned Hartman-Hammond bridge provided the impetus for what was to become the largest community engagement process in Michigan. Facing the possibility of a projected 28% population increase by the mid 21st Century, residents participated in development of a comprehensive land use and transportation study and cast 12,000 votes to determine preferred scenarios for the region’s future.

Growth centered around existing cities and villages was preferred by 87% of the participants. This and other preferences led to The Grand Vision’s citizen-defined guiding principles, unveiled in 2008 with a focus on economic stability, a variety of transportation and housing options, protection of natural resources, energy conservation, and preservation of viable food systems. Together, they provide a framework for managing growth in Antrim, Benzie, Grand Traverse, Kalkaska, Leelanau, and Wexford counties. Alignment with these principles has garnered state and national attention and served as a catalyst for project funding in excess of $10 million.

Areas of Focus:
The Grand Vision Networks bring together diverse perspectives and expertise with a common focus. The following six networks are built upon elements integral to a sustainable future for the region: Energy, Food and Farming, Growth and Investment, Housing, Natural Resources. and Transportation.


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