Board of Directors

Serving 15 Michigan Counties

Michael Adkins
Michael Adkins

Board Chair

Retired
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Michael’s career extends 40 years in the financial services industry and specifically in the Risk Management space. During his career he worked for multiple Fortune 500 global insurers, the most recent being Chubb Group of Insurance Companies. His professional career includes several senior leadership and strategic development roles in claims, commercial underwriting, Human Resources, marketing and most recently Vice President- Executive in charge of branch operations for the State of Michigan. He led one of the largest staff in the Midwest region, was responsible for the P&L for a portfolio more than 350 million and serviced nearly 10,000 policyholders. Additionally, he was responsible for Talent Management, Territory growth, marketing strategy and Branch services. He led and served on several corporate Talent Management and Diversity specific strategic committees. His relationship with Orchards is approximately 13 yrs. where he has been a board member, officer and currently the board chair.
Drew Besonson
Drew Besonson

Vice Chair

Poise Wealth Birmingham, MI  
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Drew Besonson is the President of Poise Wealth, a Partner of Bleakly Financial Group, based in Michigan.  For over 20 years, Drew has supported affluent families to manage the complexities of their financial lives. As a testament to Drew’s high level of service, he has been featured in Fortune Magazine as well as numerous Metro-Detroit publications.  He lectures regularly to advisors and law firms sharing his areas of expertise to help grow their practice.

Drew’s goal is to leave clients financially better off than when he found them as he brings value to their financial war-room team.  He is passionate about the success of his clients and collaborates with them to create a comprehensive plan that aligns their actions with their intentions. He has developed thoughtful strategies and through these has transferred over $11 Billion into specialized Trusts.

Rochelle Hurt M.D.
Rochelle Hurt M.D.

Board Secretary

Chief Medical Officer Health Bridge Financial Grand Rapids Michigan
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Dr. Hurt is a transplant to metropolitan Detroit. Originally from St. Louis, Missouri, she most recently lived and practiced in a suburb of Dayton, Ohio. It is our good fortune that Dr. Hurt met her wonderful husband and relocated to Michigan. A dedicated health care professional, Dr. Hurt is radiologist who specializes in women’s imaging. Her passion for helping is clear when she talks of the needs of children and moms. One of her goals is to educate and empower families so they can make good health care decisions. Like many supporters of Orchards Children’s Services, Dr. Hurt was introduced to the organization by a friend. The good doctor confesses she was thrilled discovering dedicated people sharing the same passion for the agency. Dr. Hurt wants to help ensure that children’s needs are met regardless of their socio-economic condition.
Jennifer LoPatin
Jennifer LoPatin

NCJW Appointee / Director

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I became involved with Orchards through my membership in National Council of Jewish Women, Michigan. I have a Masters in Social Service Administration from Case Western Reserve University and worked as a pediatric medical social worker. I’ve been married to Mark for 44 years. We have 3 children and 2 grandaughters. I’m proud to serve on the Orchards Board as the NCJW | MI representative.
Dianna Ronan
Dianna Ronan

Chair, Audit & Finance Committee

Vice President Finance Health Alliance Plan of Michigan Detroit Michigan

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As Vice President of Finance, Dianna Ronan leads the corporate accounting function for Health Alliance Plan of Michigan and its subsidiaries. This includes responsibility for monitoring financial performance that impacts HAP’s many stakeholders. Dianna has more than 35 years of financial leadership with non-profit healthcare organizations, including hospitals and health plans. Over the span of her career, she has been responsible for internal audit functions, assisting in the development of a hospital corporate compliance program, IRS compliance and overall financial accounting functions. Dianna has been involved with Orchards Children’s Services for many years, having held leadership positions that include chair of the board, chair of the audit and finance committee and chair of the strategic planning committee. She has also served as treasurer of the Kensington Valley Hockey Association and served on the finance committee of the United Way of Kalamazoo. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration – Accounting from Western Michigan University and is a certified public accountant.
Cheryl Parks Ajamu
Cheryl Parks Ajamu

Board Member

Founder and CEO The Ajamu Group LLC Detroit Michigan
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Cheryl Parks Ajamu is the Founder and CEO of The Ajamu Group, LLC, the firm secures advertising and sponsorships for national media companies, celebrity driven events, provides Event Management and social media strategies.   Cheryl Parks Ajamu began her advertising and brand marketing career 21 years ago as the Detroit Advertising Sales Manager for Black Entertainment Television.  The Ajamu Group, LLC has partnered with Google, Comerica Bank, Fifth Third Bank, Uptown magazine, VIBE magazine, Nissan, Toyota, Meade Lexus, Hyundai, KIA, Ford Motor Company and Delta Air Lines. Cheryl is the first African American female to own, create and produce a sanctioned event during the North American International Auto Show Press Week in Detroit, entitled the Multicultural Media Luncheon, honoring communities of color for their achievements in the automotive industry, featuring a celebrity keynote speaker.  Cheryl is also the first African American woman to own and produce a HBCU Football Classic, the Detroit Football Classic Weekend.  Cheryl Parks Ajamu is a University of Memphis graduate and the recipient of the 2019 Top Tigers Outstanding Alumni award at the University of Memphis and the 2020 General Motors Entrepreneurial Spirit Award.
Alexis Alan
Alexis Alan

Board Member

Co Founder and Chief of Innovation for the Xelnala Collective
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As a servant leader for the organization, Mr. Alan brings 20 years of executive experience in finance, mortgage lending and people development. He is currently the Founder and Chief Innovation Officer for The Xelnala Collective, a privately held company focusing on the success of its workforce while quickly building a portfolio of Real Estate Holdings, Investments and Philanthropic initiatives. Previously as the Chief of Lending and Vice President for Quicken Loans, he made a name for himself amongst industry leaders as a respected venture capital investor, banking innovator and influential leader facilitating expansion, acquisition, and product development. Mr. Alan or “Lex” as he’s known around the office, believes that a people-focused approach is the key to any successful venture, and his passion for children and families first led him to Orchards many years ago. He began his career at Orchards Children’s Services in community relations leading programs such as Arts Beat and Eats, Revvin’ with Ford, the Annual Holiday Party and a Visteon partnership that launched the Visteon – Orchards’ Computer Lab. His passion for learning and growth as well as his enthusiasm for taking care of clients motivates his ongoing commitment to the development and support of young people.
Dr. Tana Bridge
Dr. Tana Bridge

Board Member

Professor of Social Work Eastern Michigan University  
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Dr. Tana Bridge is a professor of Social Work at Eastern Michigan University. Her advanced studies include a Master of Social Work from the University of Michigan and a Doctorate in Philosophy in Evaluation and Research from Wayne State University. Dr Bridge is recognized for her passion, expertise, and skills in engagement. She has a 25-year track record of excellence in teaching, mentorship and service. Dr. Bridge’s expertise in trauma, ethical practice and collaboration are common threads in all areas of engagement. Her excellence in teaching has served to empower students in the classroom and agency practitioners locally and nationally. Believing that process with integrity is hallmark, her service leads to collaborative, successful outcomes. Dr. Bridge currently serves on many department and university committees was a previous member of the Department of Health and Human Services Secondary Traumatic Stress Steering Committee, the NASW Ethics Committee. Further, she served two terms as the Governor’s appointed member to the State of Michigan Governor’s Task Force on Child Abuse and Neglect, and was the appointed chair during a portion of those terms. She currently serves on an Emotional PPE Leadership Team for Trinity Health, St Mary Mercy Livonia. [Dr. Bridge is a recently selected member to the Board of Directors for Orchards Children’s Services. ] Dr. Bridge has several awards and certifications. She is the recipient of a Trauma and Loss Consultant of the Year Award from the National Institute for Trauma and Loss in Children and the Marshall Service Award, Excellent Teachers Engaging Alumni Award and the distinguished Ronald W. Collins Award from EMU. She is licensed in both clinical and macro practice. She holds several advanced certifications including Advanced Certified Trauma Practitioner, Certified Clinical Trauma Professional, and Certified Compassion Fatigue Professional.
LaKeisha Florence
LaKeisha Florence

Board Member

Senior Manager Deloitte & Touche LLP Detroit Michigan
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Jonathan LoPatin
Jonathan LoPatin

Board Member

Manager within the Engineering and Construction department at The Taubman Company
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Jonathan LoPatin is a Manager within the Engineering and Construction department at The Taubman Company. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communications as well as a Master of Science degree in Construction Management from Michigan State University. Jonathan’s volunteer work with the Detroit chapter of the NCJW introduced him to Orchard’s. He was immediately amazed by their mission and the people behind it, and is thrilled at the opportunity to be a part of it. Jonathan lives in Plymouth, MI with his fiancée Samantha Joustra. When not hanging around the house with their 7-year-old lab/mix Miley, they love checking out all of the food, arts, and culture in the metro Detroit area.
Lea Narens
Lea Narens

Board Member

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Narens Associates, Inc. is a family business that has thrived in the southeast Michigan community. Lea has been a volunteer for Orchards for over 20 years. In 2020, Narens Associates, Inc. was awarded the Gerald Levin Champions for Children Corporate Award.
George Pitchford
George Pitchford

Board Member

Attorney Allen Law Group, PC Detroit Michigan
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George Pitchford was both born and educated in metro Detroit. Before becoming an attorney, he completed his degree at Michigan State University where he majored in Political Science and minored in philosophy. While at Michigan State he participated in several student groups, including the Informed Student Alliance. Since becoming an attorney, he has focused his practice on counseling public and private entities on a variety of labor, employment, education, governance, construction, and municipal law matters. He has worked with private and public sector clients in a number of industries including education, municipal, health care, construction, hospitality and gaming. George is also an active member of the community. He is currently volunteering with various non-profits and community organization. This includes serving on the Board of Orchards Children’s Services and the National Association of African Americans in Human Resources. He also served on a school board that focused on ensuring that pregnant teens had the opportunity to obtain a high school diploma. Additionally, he is a member of the NAACP and volunteered as a free legal advisor at the Women’s Survival Shelter. George is a graduate of the University of Detroit School of Law, where he was the recipient of several academic awards, including induction into the Jesuit honor society Alpha Sigma Nu. He was a Title Editor of Law Review and served on the Executive Board of Moot Court and was a recipient of the Babcock Academic Scholarship. He has published several legal articles on a variety of topics including workplace bullying, discharge of employees and copyright law.
Emily Snow
Emily Snow

Board Member

Regional Vice President Enterprise Holdings
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Emily Snow is the Regional Vice President at Enterprise Holdings overseeing the Southeast Michigan market since 2020. After graduating from the University of Maryland, majoring in Spanish and International Business, she joined Enterprise as a Management Trainee in the New York market in 2005. Prior to her current role, she also served in leadership roles in Northeast Florida as well as the Corporate office in St. Louis, MO. Committed to strengthening communities one neighborhood at a time, Emily was introduced to Orchards in 2021. She understands the importance of work-life integration and served on Enterprise’s North American Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Team from 2013 to 2016. As a mom of a young adult in college, Emily enjoys spending her free time with her daughter, McKayla.
Sharon Spilkin
Sharon Spilkin

Board Member

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Sharon Spilkin is currently self-employed as an accountant.  She holds a Bachelor of Business Administration and Master’s of Accounting degrees from the University of Michigan.  She started her career in public accounting and spent many years as the Finance Director of a not-for-profit organization.  She loves to travel and is an avid baker.  Sharon is married to Andy, has twin daughters, Bridget and Julia, and one very fat cat named Cody.  Go Blue!
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