Kristen’s record demonstrates her ability to drive opportunities and positive outcomes for working families & children. She has helped millions across our state thrive.
As Chief Strategy Officer for MiHIA, Kristen leads results-focused strategy, management, and accountability for this non-profit organized to improve health and the health delivery system in central Michigan. It is the backbone and supporting organization to THRIVE, a collective impact initiative aimed at transforming public and private sectors for health excellence and sustained economic growth.
Elected in November 2019, Kristen currently serves as City Commissioner, 2nd Ward. In Bay City’s form of government, all corporate authority, policy-making and legislative functions are vested in the City Commission. In addition to regular board and budget responsibilities, Kristen provides insight and oversight of municipal strategy and policy including economic development, neighborhood revitalization, public services and infrastructure.
Kristen also serves as Vice President of Michigan Future, Inc., a non-partisan organization dedicated to long-term economic prosperity in our state. Through research, collaboration, and policy design, Kristen helps advance new ideas on how all Michigan families can thrive as part of a knowledge-driven economy. She works with bipartisan legislators and administrators on policy to increase upward mobility for Michigan’s struggling families, reduce child poverty, increase college attainment, and attract high-wage employers to Michigan.
As President/ CEO from mid 2016 – early 2021, Kristen championed the “every kid, our kid; every neighbor, our neighbor” tenet of this network of community centers. Through her strategic leadership, Kristen ensured long-term sustainability for Greater Midland’s 500 staff members to serve 10,000 community members and 1,000+ rural families annually with basic needs including food and clothing distributions. During her tenure as President/ CEO, Kristen helped develop Greater Midland’s $65 million capital campaign and oversaw a general operations budget of approximately $4 million annually. In 2020, Kristen ran an evacuation site out of the Northern Midland Family Center, the closest site to Edenville’s and Sanford’s breached dams.
Kristen participated in the prestigious Annie E. Casey Foundation’s Children & Families Fellowship Class of 2016-2017, and remains in the Fellowship network. The Fellowship is an intensive executive leadership program designed to give more child- and family-serving professionals the confidence and competence to lead major system reforms and community change initiatives. 12-15 individuals are selected for each class. The Annie E. Casey Foundation focuses on strengthening families, building stronger communities and ensuring access to opportunity.
A voice for children since 1960, The Skillman Foundation works to connect Detroit kids with opportunity. Kristen directed Skillman’s education strategies and funding from 2007-2013. As Vice President from 2013 – 2017, Kristen led and managed all Foundation program strategy including the direction of over $175 million in grants to city schools over 8 years.
In key roles from 2004 to 2007, Kristen directed policy initiatives for the State of Michigan focused on increased student achievement, family stability and financial independence for poor families. She was a lead architect of Michigan’s birth to five system of care (Great Start) and its parent organization, the Early Childhood Investment Corporation (ECIC). These initiatives have improved the lives of millions of Michiganders.
Chief of Staff, Michigan Department of Education. 2006 – 2007 // Senior Policy Advisor, Governor’s Children’s Cabinet, 2004 – 2006 // Federal Legislative Liaison, Department of Human Services, 2004 – 2006
As Executive Director from 1999-2004, Kristen led the transformation and elevation of the Association to a statewide presence and leading voice for young children in Michigan. She got support for a state-wide system, consistent with Head Start values, by building coalitions and arriving at sound strategies for community-level success.
This page represents Kristen McDonald Rivet’s work history. It does not indicate any candidate endorsement. To view organizations and individuals who have endorsed Kristen, please visit our Endorsements page.
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