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Admin Team

Claire Guisfredi, Executive Director

What is your role at NKCS?
I keep the train on the track and going 100 MPH.
 
What motivates you to work here?
I have so much support at NKCS from the board, staff, churches, and the community that I believe can move mountains!
 
What are your top 7 Jeopardy categories?
Michigan Hiking Trails. Settlers of Catan Strategies. Soup Nazi. Cards, Anyone? Girl Scout History. Raising Daughters Joyfully. Big Bang Theory Trivia.
 
If you could have one superpower, what would it be?
Teleportation. Don't wait for my phone call, I'll show up at your office! 
 

Dawn Ellis, Business Manager

What is your role at NKCS?
I'm the numbers person here. I do the bookkeeping and all the behind-the-scenes work to keep the organization running smoothly. 
 
Would you rather lose your purse or your phone?
My phone.
 
Who is your personal hero and why?
I don’t have a specific hero; however, I admire people who can go through trials of great grief and disappointment and yet continue to handle their situations with grace and faith.
 
If you could master one skill you don’t have right now, what would it be?
I would like to improve my memorization skills. (There’s another one, but I forgot.)

Katie Hop, Communications and Development Manager

What is your role at NKCS?
I manage internal and external communications, social media, the website, print and e-newletters, events, and other general nerdery.
 
What are your top five best Jeopardy categories?
SuperWhoLock. Complete the Movie Phrase. Winter is Coming. Items You Didn’t Mean to Buy at Target. Starbucks Drinks.
 
What was your dream job growing up?
I wanted to be a teacher, writer, producer, and veterinarian. At the same time.
 
In what ways are you the same as your childhood self?
I sing along to Disney music, play in dirt, try to rescue stray cats, dance in the rain and cover everything in glitter.
 

Warehouse Team

John Leale, Warehouse Manager

What is your role at NKCS?
I manage the food inventory, operations, community service program and supplemental government food distribution.
 
What five things are always in your refrigerator?
Milk. Butter. Lettuce. Eggs. Pickles.
 
If you could have one superpower, what would it be?
Can I super-sleep? I want to do that.
 
If you could master one skill you don’t have right now, what would it be?
I’d like to have equilibrium so I could ride on roller coasters.  

Tom Grostick, Warehouse Assistant

What is your role at NKCS?
I am the Chief Reclamation Engineer. I sort garage sale "treasures" for the marketplace. I also do food pickups, and all the "real" work that needs to be done in the warehouse. 
 
What’s the most interesting thing you own?
My trust in God.
 
What was your dream job growing up?
To play right field for the Tigers.
 
Who is your personal hero and why?
My dad. He taught me everything and was a true gentleman.

Candace Gunem, Pantry Coordinator

Coming Soon!

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Client Services Team

Chérie Elahl, Program Director

What is your role at NKCS?
I research, plan, develop, and implement NKCS educational programming. I also advocate that northern Kent County residents’ essential needs are not overlooked while creating partnerships among NKCS and other Kent County resource providers.
 
What are your top five best Jeopardy categories?
90’s Hip Hop. Best Michigan Camping Spots. Civil Rights Heroes. Skateboarding Legends. Netflixing.
 
What have you done that you’re most proud of?
My son will always be my pride and joy. Having him at a young age and raising him as a single parent was not easy, but I wouldn’t take back any of the struggles that we had.
 
If you could master one skill you don’t have right now, what would it be?
I want to be bilingual. Oh, and do a cartwheel!

Cassie LaMacchia, Volunteer Coordinator

What is your role at NKCS?
I schedule and train individuals and group volunteers, and connect with community members to arrange volunteer opportunities. I’m also responsible for our photography.
 
What’s the most interesting thing you own?
A spork. I still remember the day it arrived in the mail…
 
What was your dream job growing up?
Simply to help others. And here I am!
 
In what ways are you the same as your childhood self?
This list has the potential to be very long, but I’ll keep it short. I still purchase and draw with sidewalk chalk, am afraid of the dark, enjoy eating Gushers, draw a smiley face on every fogged window I see, and I work at the Children’s Museum.

Eva Smith, Intake Specialist

What is your role at NKCS?
As a Bilingual Intake Specialist my job is to check in clients, update their case file, make referrals, and find resources to help cover their immediate/urgent needs.

What motivates you to work here?
The fact we not only provide help to meet their immediate needs, but also encourage clients to be self-sufficient to provide a better life for themselves and their families.  

What five things are always in your refrigerator?
Chocolate. Ice cream. Avocados. Ketchup. Leftovers.

What have you done that you’re most proud of?
Becoming a US citizen; it was a long and hard process.

Quick Links:
How May We Help?



North Kent Community Services

10075 Northland Drive NE
Rockford, MI 49341 Map
Phone: 616-866-3478

Business Hours:
Monday thru Thursday 8:00 a.m to 6:00 p.m.