The Downtown Grand Rapids Inc. (DGRI) Board of Advisors today named interim top executive Tim Kelly as the organization’s president and CEO.

Kelly took over as interim president/CEO in November, after Kristopher Larson resigned to take a similar position in his hometown of Raleigh, NC.

“Tim is the right leader for this organization at this time,” said outgoing Board Chair Kayem Dunn. “He has been with the organization since its 2013 startup. He led the cultivation of the GR Forward plan and has deep knowledge of the community’s vision for Downtown. He also possesses the skills, style and collaborative spirit necessary to continue the implementation of GR Forward and lead the organization in the service of our local city building movement.”

The DGRI Board also elected Nikos Monoyios as Chair and appointed five new people to serve as members of the Board.

Monoyios, the Long Range Planner at The Rapid transit agency, has served on the DGRI Board since 2014 and was appointed vice chair in 2015. In his professional work, Monoyios currently leads the development of The Rapid’s 13-mile Laker Line, a critical transportation project connecting Downtown Grand Rapids and Grand Valley State University’s main campus in Allendale.

The five new appointees to the DGRI Board of Advisors include:

  • Wayman Britt, newly appointed Kent County Administrator.
  • Shaun Biel of Spectrum Health and Chair of the Monroe North Tax Increment Finance Authority.
  • Eddie Tadlock of SMG and chair of DGRI’s GR Forward Goal 1 Citizen Alliance focused on river restoration and revitalization.
  • Monica-Steimle App of Rockford Construction and Chair of DGRI’s GR Forward Goal 2 Citizen Alliance focused on developing a true Downtown neighborhood home to a diverse population.
  • Jorge Gonzalez of Start Garden and Chair of DGRI’s GR Forward Goal 4 Citizen Alliance focused on ensuring continued vitality of the local economy.

Grand Rapids Public Schools Superintendent Teresa Weatherall Neal and Grand Rapids Whitewater President/CEO Richard Bishop also were appointed to the Board in November 2017.

“We’re working to position Grand Rapids at the forefront of America’s Downtown revitalization and city building movement,” Tim Kelly said. “These appointments reflect recent leadership transition in the community, deepen DGRI's leadership network and strengthen the role that citizens play guiding DGRI’s work. These appointments also ensure we’re bringing together the creative ideas, expertise, experience and collaboration required to pursue and achieve the community’s vision for Downtown Grand Rapids.”