Director of Communications
Michigan Municipal League
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: March 25, 2019
Maureen Donker Receives Community Builder Award
Lawmaker Honored by Michigan Municipal League
LANSING, Michigan – Midland Mayor Maureen Donker was recently honored with the Community Builder Award by the Michigan Municipal League. She received the award during the League’s annual Capital Conference Awards Gala March 19 in Lansing.
Donker was recognized for her outstanding work and leadership to ensure the economic health of the Midland community. The award was given to her Tuesday by Midland Councilmember Diane Brown-Wilhelm, a member of the League Board of Trustees.
“The word community drives everything she does whether it’s in her work with special needs individuals or as her role as mayor of our city,” Brown-Wilhelm said. “Maureen Donker is ingrained in the fabric of Midland in every imaginable way. She doesn’t just work for the people of Midland—she works right along with them. She works for positive change and inspires all of us to come along with her. She truly is a ‘community builder’ and is so deserving of this honor.”
Donker was elected to the Midland City Council in 2007 and has served as Midland’s mayor since 2009. She has been an instrumental leader in the implementation of Midland’s Community Well-Being Survey. A part of the collaborative Community Success Panel, the survey aims to learn what well-being looks like in the community directly from residents and use this feedback to develop a community-wide plan that ensures Midland’s continued prosperity.
In addition to her work on this endeavor, Donker has previously served as a League Board member, a Workers’ Compensation Fund Board member, and is active with the Michigan Association of Mayors and the Michigan Women in Municipal Government. She is the executive director of The Reece Endeavor of Midland, a community program providing homes for individuals with special needs since 1998. Donker is also active in the Midland community, serving on various local and regional civic organizations.
Donker said she was very appreciative of the award, and true to her community-builder reputation, she gave credit to others.
“One of my high school nuns would always tell us, ‘No matter what you accomplish in life, somebody helped you,’” Donker said. “I have had a lot of help. One of the things I love most about this role is truly the people I have had an opportunity to work with. Really, I’ve been the one who has been most impacted. We are doing wonderful work in Midland. We want to be a city of choice, the place where businesses locate, and people want to live. You can’t do one thing to make that happen; you have to do lots of things. And certainly, you can’t do this work alone. Thank you very much for this wonderful honor.”
About the Community Builder Award: This award honors individuals whose leadership creates positive community change. Through efforts such as encouraging civic engagement, supporting up-and-coming leaders, fostering good working relationships, and thinking strategically, they make their community a place where people truly love to live and work.
For photos of Donker receiving this award go to this Michigan Municipal League “Awards and Honors Photos” album on flickr: https://www.flickr.com/photos/michigancommunities/albums/72157677160400387. Photos can be downloaded from the League’s flickr page for free. We just ask that the following photo credit be given: Flickr Photo Michigan Municipal League/mml.org.
About the League: Michigan Municipal Leagueis dedicated to making Michigan’s communities better by thoughtfully innovating programs, energetically connecting ideas and people, actively serving members with resources and services, and passionately inspiring positive change for Michigan’s greatest centers of potential: its communities. The League advocates on behalf of its member communities in Lansing, Washington, D.C., and the courts; provides educational opportunities for elected and appointed municipal officials; and assists municipal leaders in administering services to their communities through League programs and services. Learn more at mml.org.