In February, after a comprehensive search and screening over 30 candidates from around the country, the Big Brothers Big Sisters of Flint and Genesee County Board of Directors selected Lisa Humphrey to fill the position of retiring longtime President and CEO, Reta Stanley.
Humphrey’s former role with BBBS was as Vice President of Programs since 2009. She possesses a wealth of knowledge of innovative programming in the field of mentoring, along with invaluable insight and experience in promoting positive youth development.
Celebrating 78 years of serving Genesee County, the youth empowerment organization’s mission is to create and support one-to-one mentoring relationships. BBBS served 317 youth in 2021 and hopes to increase new mentoring matches by 25 percent in 2022.
My City wanted to know a little bit more about Lisa Humphrey … read on!
What was your very first job?
I wish I had a more exciting response to this question. When I was 16, I worked at Deb clothing store (near Target on Miller Road). I had to wait until I turned 17 to be hired at the 5-7-9 clothing store in Genesee Valley. That was where I shopped and could not wait to get the employee discount!
What are you most excited about in your life right now?
I am most excited about the break from my routine! I was on the “program side” of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Flint and Genesee County for nearly 17 years. My new role brings a whole new perspective of the organization – a view through a different lens. I am so excited about the challenges being presented and the growth that it will allow, for both me and for Big Brothers Big Sisters. On a personal note, the last year brought many exciting changes. My husband and I became grandparents to a beautiful baby girl in August, both of our sons moved out of the house so we are almost empty-nesters, we got a new dog and our youngest daughter entered junior high. (The latter is both exciting and scary.)
What’s something people would never guess about you?
I tell people all the time that I am an introvert and the response is always, “No you’re not.” But really, I am perfectly comfortable walking into a room and becoming a wallflower. I find value in listening over speaking; solitude is comforting and peaceful, and I enjoy personal conversations over small talk.
Who is your hero?
My heroes are people who stand up for those who cannot. I think that is why I am so passionate about the mission of our organization. I love that we provide mentors who empower youth to realize their own potential. Every young person deserves to have the same opportunities and to have someone advocate for them until they begin advocating for themselves.
What are your hobbies?
Fall is one of my favorite seasons because it means football Saturdays and Sundays! Watching games is one of my favorite pastimes – I love college and the NFL equally. I’m a diehard Michigan Wolverines fan and started out as a Denver Broncos fan. I later became a New England Patriots fan because of the GOAT (Brady) and can’t help but cheer for the Detroit Lions. Baking is another hobby I enjoy. It is so rewarding to put simple ingredients together and bring joy to others. One thing I wish I had more time for is reading. I love a good book; but unfortunately if it is a really good book, I can’t put it down… which is why I do not have the time for it.
Would you rather cook or order in?
I would typically prefer to cook, but these days it would appear that I prefer to order in. When I shared the news of being selected CEO to my children, my 11-year old responded, “How are we going to get food?!” This was because I usually went to the grocery store on Mondays. I laughed at the time and told her that was a silly worry. I’ve found that grocery shopping has been difficult to work into my new schedule, so I guess she was not so silly!
What is the biggest work-related thing you hope to accomplish in the next year?
I hope to expand the Big Brothers Big Sisters’ Village. We have been in the one-to-one relationship business for over 78 years, but there are still those in our community who only know our name and not our work. I hope to expose the urgent need for mentorship to that group of individuals. We have on average 190 youth waiting for someone to ignite their power and promise! By joining the Village, a mentor may change the trajectory of more than one life.