April 21-27, 2010
Loretta Gary Smith
Bank VP is committed to
making her city and region “Money Smart”
By Scott Talley
SPECIAL TO THE CHRONICLE
Comerica Bank’s Loretta Gary Smith is motivat-
ed by a simple goal that has touched countless lives: "Through my work I want to bring our institution to life in the eyes of the community as a warm, caring part of this area,” said Smith, a proud Detroit resident who began her journey with Com- erica in 1968.
During her distinguished
Comerica career, Smith, vice president of Public Affairs and Community Reinvestment Act manager, has received numer- ous awards and honors for her dedication to community causes, including financial lit- eracy. In this column, to co- incide with Michigan Money Smart Week, Smith discusses her bank’s commitment to financial education through- out our city and region.
Loretta Gary Smith
Q: As this edition of the Michigan Chronicle was
hitting the newsstands, Comerica was participating in Michigan Money Smart Week (April 17-24) activities. Can you describe some of the Comerica-sponsored events in our area and why were these programs se- lected?
Smith: We will be covering topics like personal
finance and budgeting for individuals and families, as well as presenting programs targeting youth, includ- ing Junior Achievement lessons. We work closely with our community partners to make sure we canvass our region with a variety of programs that best meet the needs of our people.
Q: It should be noted that this is also National
Volunteer Week (April 18-24) and bank colleagues conduct many of Comerica’s financial education pro- grams. Explain the contributions of Comerica volun- teers in promoting financial literacy throughout our community?
Smith: Comerica’s volunteers are key to adminis-
tering our financial literacy program to students and adults across the state. For instance, with the JA ac- tivities during Money Smart Week, there will be about 30 volunteers administering financial literacy class- room presentations throughout the day—20 of those volunteers are Comerica employees. Additionally we work with organizations where we will assist with the training of a trainer and this person, with the help re- ceived by Comerica volunteers, will be able to conduct ongoing financial literacy programs through his or her organization.
Q: Another financial initiative which Comerica will
participate is Detroit 50K. Can you describe this proj- ect?
Smith: Detroit 50K was launched by Michigan
Neighborhood Partnership, a nonprofit organization. In partnership with Michigan Neighborhood Partner- ship, Comerica’s mission is to train individuals to teach financial literacy throughout Detroit, primarily in faith- based organizations, that will ultimately reach 50,000 people. The project is in the planning stages, but we are already very excited about working with Michigan Neighborhood Partnership and the potential benefit for our community.
Q: You have had an opportunity to present ideas
to the Michigan Department of Education board of di- rectors. Locally, what type of ongoing financial educa- tion outreach does Comerica perform in the schools?
Smith: One of our longtime community partners is
Detroit Public Schools. Through programs like Junior Achievement, Banking on our Future and Comerica’s Youth Savings Program, our goal has been to help stu- dents establish a solid foundation in the area of finan- cial principles. At the high school level, we are very proud of our partnership with the Academy of Finance at Golightly Career and Technical Center; and we are currently working with Cody High School to open our first High School Youth Savings Program. It’s impor- tant that financial literacy be a part of the overall aca- demic formula to ensure a complete education, which will prepare students for life.
Q: Along with participating in Money Smart Week
activities, school programs and Detroit 50K, what are other ways that we can become more financially liter- ate as a community in the 21st century?
Smith: To buy the first house and educate our
children, it takes the basic principles of financial liter- acy—budgeting, investing and saving to achieve those goals without financial hardship. And today there’s so much more we need to know about finances than we needed to know in the past. Financial education applies to everyone and the better educated we are about our finances and financial principles, the better we will be able to deal with the world we live in today. It’s an activity that we can engage in as a community, and with this knowledge, we can move forward as a community as well.
THE MICHIGAN CHRONICLE
Begins with Progress
Comerica joins our community in celebrating National Volunteer Week
By Scott Talley
SPECIAL TO THE CHRONICLE
“An individual has not started living until he can rise above the narrow confines of his individualistic con- cerns to the broader concerns of all humanity.”
…Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
r. King’s words are a reminder of the importance of giving back to others. Throughout history, advancements
that brought liberation, equality and human dignity, have been most often driven by the selfless actions of men, women and children motivated by principle rather than material gains.
During times of natural disasters how often
have we marveled the compassion, courage and generosity of volunteers who answer the call of people in need? However, on a day-to- day level in our own communities, volunteers and volunteer initiatives are essential in uniting all segments of our society to address critical human needs.
While it may appear that volunteers oper-
ate in a seemingly anonymity, there is no way to ignore the efforts of 63.4 million people, which is the number of people the U.S. Bureau of Labor estimates performed volun- teer service through or for an organization last year. And that number does not even begin to count the many selfless acts performed in our neighborhoods, families and other avenues of life, where the need to serve comes first with no regard for counting hours and documenting activities.
Therefore, as we observe National Volun-
teer Week, we are given an opportunity to celebrate our own special volunteers across metropolitan Detroit. Through our volunteers’ ability to find the time to serve despite the other challenges in their lives we are reminded of the power we all possess to make a differ- ence in our society. And as indicated by the profiles that appear with this story, that power and the spirit of volunteerism is indeed alive and well throughout our region.
“One of my favorite non-profit organizations that I'm actively engaged in is the Junior League of Detroit.
It's an organiza- Karen Arthur-Langley
tion of women committed to promoting voluntarism, developing the potential of women and improving com- munities through the effec- tive leadership of trained volunteers. Over recent years, the League's primary objective is to improve child- hood literacy in the inner city of Detroit specifically tar-
geting and improving literacy rates in the 48215 zip code of Detroit. As a native Detroiter, raised on the eastside of Detroit, this is my way of giving back to my community.”
…. Karen Arthur-Langley, Comerica Bank Vice President
“I am a Comerica Bank volunteer for “Banking On Our Future.” In this program volunteers provide finan- cial education classes to more than 6,300 students in Michigan. I teach about the language of money and how to become empowered to take control of your financial future. The young adults I teach are in grades 9-12 in the Detroit Public Schools system. I take a vested interest in our youth and I believe that God has given me the ability to pass on the message to encourage our youth to take charge of their fi- nances and learn the value of
a dollar! Arming the youth of today is very important and we need to invest more in them as they are our today's successes and tomorrow's CEOs.”
…Victor Cutler, Comerica Bank Assistant Vice President
“I am an Executive Board of Directors member and
volunteer cheerleading coach for the Northwest Cougars Youth Association. This is our 40th year an- niversary and I am proud to say I have been a coach for the past 10 years. I have coached every age group of girls from ages 5-14. A significant amount
“I became involved with ARISE Detroit! because Lily Yvonne Hicks
of the people. It’s exciting to see young people and old people coming together to makes things happen and that what’s ARISE Detroit! does it makes things happen by getting people involved all over the city, hosting com- munity carnivals, cleaning up their blocks, planting gar- dens to grow food and doing something positive for their neighborhoods. They have even gotten the police and fire departments and city workers involved in donating time. It’s been great watching the or-
ganization grow and being part of it. ARISE Detroit! brings people together with a feeling of love. Only an organization that really cares about people can do that.”
… Lily Yvonne Hicks, Retired Detroit Public Safety Officer
“Marion Wright Edelman, a member of Delta Sigma Theta and lifelong advocate for disadvantaged Americans, said, ‘Service is the rent we pay to be living. It is the very purpose of life and not some- thing you do in your spare time.’ I have taken her statement to heart, and I try to live it by volunteer- ing with the following committees in the sorority's Detroit Alumnae Chapter: Proj- ect Healthy Living, Homeless, E.M.B.O.D.I.
(Empowering Stephanie Hobson
Males to Build Opportunities for Developing Independence), Ways and Means, Public Rela- tions, Round Up, Social Action, Technology, and the Delta Sigma Theta Detroit Founda- tion, Inc. (DSTDFI) Golf Outing. All Detroit Alumnae Chapter programs make a difference in our community by providing
our youth scholarships and mentoring, feeding the homeless population and providing them with hy- giene kits, as well as educating the community about healthy living. I am truly honored to be a member of Delta Sigma Theta because it gives me many oppor- tunities to serve my community.”
… Stephanie Hobson, Senior Buyer, Internation- al Automotive Components (IAC) Group North America
“Volunteerism for me means to be a member of the National Congress of Black Women (NCBW) - Greater Detroit Chapter. The national organization was founded by the Honorable Shirley Chisholm in 1985 to strengthen and develop African American women for service in government, elected offices, and boards. Our local chapter has continued to walk in the footsteps of the woman who was ‘unbought’ and ‘unbossed’ by raising the greatest amount of
of time is required and this is a huge commitment. Our practice season begins in June and my work with the cheerleaders is not over until after the sports banquet in December. As a volunteer over the years I have witnessed girls matric- ulate through our cheerlead- ing program as babies and leave as confident young ladies that are prepared to overcome any obstacles life presents. I love helping children and can’t think of
doing anything else more rewarding!”
…Angela Gardner-Street, Social Worker Consul- tant, Inkster School District
“I volunteer for the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History because it is my passion. We have a jewel right here in the city of Detroit and yet we as African-Americans don't partake in the numbers we should. We don't do mem- berships in ostensive numbers as we should and we don't look at the educational tools it offers our young folks. Our young people need to be edu- cated on our history because it's not only African-American history, but also because it is so deeply in the fabric of Amer- ican history. We also need to
reach out to other ethnic groups to become mem- bers of the CHWMAAH…It gives me great pleasure to work with the Museum’s Women's Committee. One of our primary functions is to raise monies to support the museum through educational programs and events.”
…Debbye Hardin, Certified Travel Agent & Ac- credited Cruise Counselor
funds for the placement of the Sojourner Truth bust in the U.S. Capitol Rotunda… Inspired by the spirit of our sisters, Shirley and Sojourner, we work on local issues such as the improvement of public education in Detroit by em- powering all the stakeholders through our collaborative Edu- cation Summit: The Urgency of Now on May 1 of this year. Volunteerism is alive and well as the NCBW - Greater Detroit Chapter follows in the mighty
footsteps of Chisholm and Truth, women who were strong in their beliefs and advocacy.”
…Gloria Killebrew, Retired Wayne County Com- mission Liaison
“In the last four years I have involved myself with the Coleman A. Young Foundation’s program for pre- college students and during these past years I have watched my girls know what is expected of them in high school, what their pos- sibilities are and what is in store for them afterwards. I have seen shy and intro- verted girls stand in front of a class and take control. When I saw the transforma- tion in my own children—I have six other nieces and nephews—I
Bethany Kinard with husband Robert.
family what this program was about and they brought
them to class or I brought them. Every parent wants
the best for their children and I want the best for all of the children involved.”
…Bethany Kinard, FedEx Truck Driver (Pictured with husband Robert)
“I enjoy volunteering because I enjoy helping others. We're fortunate that Comerica Bank spon- sors a variety of events that provide us the opportu- nity to give back to the commu- nity. For example, Comerica is one of the sponsors of "Shred Day". This service enables individuals to bring a lim- ited amount of their personal papers to one of the participat- ing Comerica Bank locations to be shredded. With all of the security scares relating to identity theft this is an excellent service to provide for the com- munity and I'm happy to volun-
Kim Maclin teer my time for something this beneficial.”
…Kim Maclin, Wealth & Institutional Manage- ment, Comerica Bank
‘I am a volunteer at the Detroit West District Peace Center as the president of the Guiding Committee. As a volunteer and an advocate for peace, I enjoy working with various churches and local communi- ties in promoting peace, un- derstanding and social justice. As a volunteer I assist in plan- ning programs, informational forums and participating in interfaith relations. I feel that these projects provide useful information to individuals in- terested in viewing peace as a state of mind and a path of action. I sincerely hope that one day the practice of con-
flict resolution, forgiveness, and reconciliation can reduce the violence in our schools, communities and the world. My voluntary efforts serve as a way that I can give back to my community and the world in general for the many blessings that I have received in my life. I believe that we all should share our spiritual gifts or talents to help others to make this world a better place for the next generations to come!”
…Louis Samuel, District Supervisor, Michigan Liquor Control Commission
“I volunteer with the Account- ing Aid Society which offers free income tax preparation to the community. I enjoy volun- teering my time and giving back to the community I grew up in by offering a service that many find difficult to understand and afford. I am only one of many Comerica colleagues that par- ticipate and enjoy giving back to this worthwhile program.”
…. Nadia Sanchez, Assistant Vice President, Co- merica Bank
| Page 2
| Page 3
| Page 4
| Page 5
| Page 6
| Page 7
| Page 8
| Page 9
| Page 10
| Page 11
| Page 12
| Page 13
| Page 14
| Page 15
| Page 16
| Page 17
| Page 18
| Page 19
| Page 20
| Page 21
| Page 22
| Page 23
| Page 24
| Page 25
| Page 26
| Page 27
| Page 28
| Page 29
| Page 30
| Page 31
| Page 32
| Page 33
| Page 34
| Page 35
| Page 36