Gingras Global Magazine Fall 2017 - Page 49

Romy Kochan: Some people might consider your funding the project a “rescue” rather than an “investment.” How do you feel this is an empowerment or enhancement to the current strategy for the tower?

Brenda Hunt: This investment talks! It says this is an asset that is worth saving and with all our integrity the Battle Creek Community Foundation is saying “this will happen,” and just maybe we will provide an opportunity to bring the people of this community along with us when we say and then act on: “Believing in Battle Creek.

This investment provides more time for Heritage Tower, and it's many larger investors to finalize the capital needed and get started on the renovation process. Let me just add that the Heritage Tower was neglected and actions were not taken when it would have been more advantageous for us as a community, in some sense the Heritage Tower represents what our people are going thru in Battle Creek. It’s not that we haven’t been working hard in our community, we just couldn’t see what and who we have been leaving behind. When things get pretty bad, especially old big buildings, they get our attention. Make no doubt about it — Battle Creek is making a “comeback”… a comeback for people and business

Romy Kochan: As you consider the opportunity for Battle Creek specific to impact investing, letting yourself dream big, what would you like to happen?

Brenda Hunt: We know there are individuals and groups that want to see change in Battle Creek and are willing to invest in opportunities that are presented that create positive change. These investments can take on many forms, we want to help create a culture where we have all forms readily available, from philanthropic investments to private investors, to venture capital investments and with impact investments, the list goes on and on. The community foundation can be a catalyst, leading with sound investments into entities that will make Battle Creek a better place to live is one way we can demonstrate. Ultimately, people want to invest and/or give to businesses or organizations that are productive. I think there is a new path for community foundation donors and it is only just emerging.

For more information on the Battle Creek Community Foundation, please visit their website http://www.bccfoundation.org/