Community Leaders to be Honored as Laureates at the 2021 Junior Achievement West Michigan Business Hall of Fame
Grand Rapids, Michigan, October 2021 – Junior Achievement of the Michigan Great Lakes, Inc. (JAMGL) announces that Sandy Jelinski, of Lake Michigan Credit Union, and Wilbur Lettinga, of Kentland Corp., will be inducted as Laureates into the Junior Achievement West Michigan Business Hall of Fame. Jelinski and Lettinga will be honored at the dinner and ceremony on October 25, 2021 at the Amway Grand Plaza in Grand Rapids, Michigan.
The Junior Achievement West Michigan Business Hall of Fame honors prominent business leaders who possess a record of outstanding business achievements in West Michigan, have earned the respect of the local community and who serve as a role model, particularly to local youth. “It is truly an honor to have the opportunity to present Sandy and Wilbur as our 2021 laureates,” said Bill Coderre, President, Junior Achievement of the Michigan Great Lakes, Inc. “Honoring the mark each has made through hard work, vision and success in their respective fields is so important. We are pleased they have been selected by our laureate selection committee to join this remarkable group of West Michigan business giants.”
Sandy Jelinski is the President/CEO of Lake Michigan Credit Union (LMCU), the largest financial institution headquartered in Michigan, and the 19th largest credit union in the nation. She has exceled in many roles during her 30+ years with LMCU. Jelinski was appointed to her current position by LMCU’s board of directors in 2000. Because of Sandy’s vision, passion for always doing what is right for the members, and team-building skills and experience, the credit union has grown dramatically under her direction.
In 2017, Jelinski was the catalyst behind LMCU’s expansion into southwest Florida, where today LMCU has 13 branches, as well as a pending acquisition which will be completed at the end of 2021 and will bring the number of Florida branches to 19.
Jelinski has served on a regional Advisory Board of the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, and on the Boards of the Right Place of Michigan, Economic Club of Grand Rapids, and Wedgewood Christian Services.
Jelinski attended both Grand Rapids Community College and Aquinas College. She is married to Tom and has two daughters, Jenn who is a local Realtor®, Brittny, who is a doctor of audiology, and a step-daughter Kelley, who lives in New York City. Sandy is the proud grandparent to grandson Eddie. She loves to exercise, go on three-hour “fast walks” and swimming.
Wilbur Lettinga is the founder, chairman and CEO of Kentland Corp, a development company that owns and manages commercial real estate and manufactured housing communities. He was the founder and past president of Lettinga & Associates, LLC, a C.P.A. firm he started in 1957. He was past chairman & CEO of Laser Alignment, Inc., a manufacturer of precision measurement instruments for the construction industry, co-founded by him in 1969. He also founded Kentwood Savings & Loan in 1974 and served as CEO until it was sold several years later. He has served as a board member of Legacy Trust since November 2006.
Lettinga is very active in the community, serving on the Butterworth Hospital Board for 14 years prior to its merger with Spectrum Health. He served on the Spectrum Health Foundation Board for approximately 20 years as Treasurer and to date as a lifetime board member. Additionally, Lettinga has served on the Spectrum Health Audit & Compliance Committee for
several years, and was president for over twenty years of the Hope Network Foundation Board where he continues to serve.
Lettinga graduated from Davenport University in 1955 and was elected to their board of trustees in 1973, serving as chairman for 14 years. He continues to serve on the Davenport University system board on both the Audit/Finance Committee & Executive Committee along with serving on the Davenport Foundation Board of Trustees.
The induction ceremony will be conducted and awards presented at the 2021 Junior Achievement West Michigan Business Hall of Fame, a black tie (optional) dinner on October 25 at The Amway Grand Plaza. Independent Bank is the presenting sponsor. For more information and to sponsor tables or purchase tickets, please contact Jay Ediger at 616-575-9080, ext. 2227.
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Photos: Photo 1 – Sandy Jelinski
Photo 2 – Wilbur Lettinga
About Junior Achievement of the Michigan Great Lakes, Inc.
Junior Achievement of the Michigan Great Lakes is the nation’s 23rd largest JA chapter and an area office of JA USA, the world’s largest organization dedicated to educating students about workforce readiness, entrepreneurship, and financial literacy through experiential, hands-on programs. The organization offers programs to help prepare young people in Mid, West, and North Michigan for the real world by showing them how to generate wealth and effectively manage it, how to create jobs which make their communities more robust, and how to apply entrepreneurial thinking to the workplace. Students put these lessons into action and are empowered to own their economic success. JAMGL is the future home of the nation’s only JA Free Enterprise Center housing three student learning labs and the Inspiration Lobby.
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