UDM student receives service honor

Detroit Mercy student Jeremiah Steen is one of 42 recipients of the 2023 Governor’s Service Awards. The honorees will be celebrated on Nov. 28 during a reception at the Fox Theatre in Detroit.

Specifically, Steen was one of five recipients of the Spirit of Hope Award. Receiving this honor was a thrill to Steen.

“The Spirit of Hope Award is a significant honor that reaffirms that the impact that I’m hoping to make for Detroit’s young people is making progress,” Steen said.

These awards have been presented since 1994 and will be hosted by the Michigan Community Service Commission. This group supports Michigan volunteers, organizations and businesses that are committed to service and play a critical role in improving the lives of our people and communities.

The awards were announced by Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, who will be a part of the ceremony.

“Michiganders roll up their sleeves to help their communities and always have each other’s backs,” Whitmer said. “That spirit of service and selflessness defines us and demonstrates the power of getting things done for the people and places you love most. Every year, we come together to honor those extraordinary Michiganders who go above and beyond to serve their community and this year is no different. I look forward to meeting and celebrating all the awardees from across Michigan and hearing their stories.”

Steen has been committed service. Although he’s still an undergraduate at Detroit Mercy, he’s made a major impact already.

“I received the Spirt of Hope Award because of the impact I’ve had as the Executive Director of the Steen Foundation— youth-lead foundation that invest in the aspirations of young people using the Critical Youth Theory mode,” Steen said. “Also, I am a Board Member at Friends of the Rouge and Detroit Bird Alliance. Additionally, I am a Trustee at the Skillman Foundation, Steering Committee Member for Emerging Practitioners in Philanthropy (EPIP), Vice-Chairman for the Association of Fundraising Professionals —Detroit (AFP), Advisory Board for the Michigan Non-profit Association and The Soul of Philanthropy —Michigan (TSOP).”

The Commission describes Steen as a “catalyst for ethical leadership, mission-driven fundraising, and sustainable philanthropy.” Steen is also a writer for The Varsity News.