We are here to start something

Leading us in the right directionFrom our Executive Team to our Board of Directors, Big Brothers Big Sisters has a compassionate and dedicated group of individuals on our side that are willing to do whatever it takes to help change children’s lives for the better.

Big Brothers Big Sisters Leadership

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Executive Team

Jeannine Gant, President and CEO
Robert Hennessey, VP Finance & Administration
Lynette Simmons, VP Programs
Cheryl Haithco, VP of Development


Jeannine Gant
President and CEO

Jeannine Gant brings over 2 decades of non-profit experience in the metropolitan Detroit area to her new role as Big Brothers Big Sisters of Metropolitan Detroit Chief Executive Officer. Most recently she served as Executive Director of Playworks Michigan, a national non-profit organization that leverages recess to support the social and emotional learning for children in elementary schools. Prior she held leadership positions at Wayne State University's School of Business, The Children's Center, The Epilepsy Foundation and numerous other child and family serving organizations. Her for-profit experience, at J. Walter Thompson advertising, includes launching Ford Division's $32 million national cause marketing campaign that promotes breast cancer awareness and research. Jeannine holds a Master's degree in Public Relations and Organizational Communication from Wayne State University.


Robert Hennessey, CPA
Vice President, Finance and Administration

Robert Hennessey has Bachelor of Science in Business Administration in Accounting and Finance from Saginaw Valley State University.  Mr. Hennessey is both a Certified Public Accountant and a Certified Financial Planner; he is responsible for day to day human resource, accounting, finance and budget activities.  Hennessey prepares and monitors the annual budget, generates monthly financial reports, cash flow and analysis and completes all grant reporting requirements.  His human resource responsibilities include interviewing potential employees, maintaining employee files, and administering agency human resource policies and practices.  He also consults and assists senior management with finance and operations related issues.

Lynette Simmons, MA
Vice President, Programs

Lynette Simmons oversees all aspects of programming for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Metropolitan Detroit.  She ensures that all programs are well-planned, achieving program goals and meeting requirements of the agency and grantors, including special initiatives to reach underserved populations like children of prisoners and youth who have touched the Juvenile Justice System as she has with BBBSMD's MCP, OJJDP AND DHS grants since 2007.  Simmons is experienced in leading program staff and translating national BBBSA network goals to local execution.  She is highly skilled in analysis and assessment of program metrics to evaluate efficacy to the work and course correct as needed.  She is on several national BBBSA committees, the National Diversity Advisory committee for the National Center of Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) and a Leadership Detroit alumni. Simmons holds a Master of Administration in Behavioral Communication and a Bachelor of Science in Behavioral Communication/Business from Eastern Michigan University.

Cheryl Haithco
Vice President, Development

Cheryl Haithco is the Vice President of Development for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Metropolitan Detroit. She previously served as the Development Director of the award-winning Japhet School in Madison Heights and formerly the Development Officer for Think Detroit/PAL. Cheryl is an active member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP), served on the Board of Directors for the Association of Fundraising Professionals Detroit Chapter, the Diversity Committee for AFP International and has served as chair and co-chair of the National Philanthropy Day Dinner. She also serves on the Mercy High School Alumnae Board. Cheryl holds a BS in Business Marketing and will be completing her Masters degree in Public Administration with a concentration in Non-Profit Management.


Board of Directors

Dale H. Kirk, Chair
Comcast Cable Communications, Inc.
Vice President of Engineering

Tish King, Senior Vice Chair
Wayne County
Director of Human Resources

Gerald J. Israel, Treasurer

Gerald B. Williams, Secretary
Silver Pine Medical Group
Human Resources

Mark J. Albrecht, Governance/Nominating Chair
Orlans Associates, PC
Senior Director - Human Resources

John A. Barker, CFA
Kresge Foundation
Investment Director

Michael (Micky) Bly
AAM (American Axle) - Europe
President/Managing Director

Patrick B. Bosworth
New Dimension Logistics, LLC
President/Chief Operation Officer

Richard D. Chaney
Vice President

Allen Coleman
Strategic Staffing Solutions
Chief Operating Officer

Luanne Thomas Ewald, FACHE
DMC-Children’s Hospital
Vice-President, Business Development & Strategic Planning

Rose M. Glenn, APR
Henry Ford Health System
Senior Vice President Communications and Chief Marketing Officer

Joel Gurman
Quicken Loans
Vice President, Detroit Web Center

Mark Hackel
Macomb County
Macomb County Executive

Richard Hampson
RBS Citizens Bank
State President

Michele A. Samuels
Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan
Vice President & General Auditor

Brad Simmons
Ford Motor Company
Director, Office of the Chairman

T.L. Summerville
Attorney at Law

LaShanda Thomas
Clairmount Group, PLC, Certified Public Accountants
Principal and Founder

Steve Wagner
The Auto Club Group
President, Field Operations

Tobin Williams
General Motors
Executive Director, Human Resources Corporate Staffs

James P. Young Jr., Ph. D.
Concordant Healthcare Solutions Inc.
Chief Executive Officer



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© 2011 Big Brothers Big Sisters of Metropolitan Detroit, 7700 Second Avenue, Suite 602, Detroit, MI 48202, 313-309-0500