Latesha Lipscomb, 2015 Leadership Award Winner
Latesha Lipscomb is a Grand Rapids native who has a passion for working hard to better the lives of the underprivileged in a city’s urban core. She is the second oldest of 6 children and the first of the bunch to receive a formal education. She is a graduate of Boston College where she majored in Political Science with a Focus Study in Faith, Peace & Justice. Falling in love with the Jesuit ideal of service to mankind, she travelled to the Cape Verde islands off the West Coast of Africa with the American Red Cross to rebuild a housing facility for both nursing home patients and children who were in Foster Care. She also managed to complete a dual course of study at Yale University as Junior Statesmen of America delegate in American Government and Public Speaking during this time. After completing her undergraduate studies she went on to become a Thurgood Marshall Scholar for the National Council on Legal Education and ultimately a graduate of Boston College Law School in 2005. After a tumultuous legal career in the private sector at large law-firms in Chicago, Latesha took a huge leap of faith and moved back to her hometown. After a tumultuous legal career in the private sector at large law-firms in Chicago, Latesha took a huge leap of faith and moved back to her hometown.
After a few contract attorney assignments at various firms in Grand Rapids and a long stint of being unable to secure employment that would last beyond a party settlements, Latesha decided it was time to get back to basics; it was time to BE the change she wanted to see in her community. With that she shifted her focus and secured employment with the Grand Rapids African American Health Institute as their Legislative & Political Advocacy Coordinator and Administrative support for the Strong Beginnings Program… which works to reduce disparities and eliminate Infant Mortality in the African American community. Her stage was set and this began her very passionate love affair with the non-profit sector.
Currently, Latesha’s servant leadership continues as a Housing Advocate for the Inner City Christian Federation, She is an extraordinary, teacher, counselor and advocate for those with quieter or muted voices in the city’s most vulnerable communities. She maintains a healthy caseload of clients whom she works closely with to ensure they are reaching their goals to become home owners or realizing their personalized dreams and aspirations for financial freedom and independence.
In her spare time, Latesha is an artist and entrepreneur. She is the beauty and brains behind I Got Face Cosmetic Concierge which is located in the Heart side District and the force behind the Women Who Wine series which was a monthly gathering where working women wine, network and bring donations varying from clothing to personal hygiene products for women and teen girls in transition. Some of the beneficiaries of such innovative and inspiring programming have included places like the YWCA, the Women’s Resource Center and Safe Haven Ministries.
She is also the creative genius behind POSH Innovative Event Management, an event design proprietorship that works closely with individuals, corporations and non-profits to execute upscale events at sometimes discounted and always competitive rates. But more importantly, POSH executes events that build others like Hustlers in Heels, a diversity & inclusion initiative hosted at the Downtown Market this Summer. Hustlers in Heels brought together fierce female entrepreneurs from all over the community to network, share ideas and encourage local women with an entrepreneurial spirit to be fearless while dreaming in color. Every woman in attendance was so inspired, this event flooded timelines and social media for weeks…
Latesha is a graduate of the Urban Core Collective Transformational Leaders Program, a certified General Civil Mediator and member of the Board of Directors for the Dispute Resolution Center of West Michigan. She is the recipient of the Grand Rapids Area Black Businesses MC Mutual Life Insurance Collaboration Award for her innovation and collaboration and ability to produce exceptional results. Latesha is SINGLE… and the proud mother of an incredibly handsome and vivacious toddler who keeps her active and hopeful.
Her mantra is… “If you ask me what I came to do in this world… I will answer you… I am here to LIVE out LOUD!”