Announcing our New Board Chair, Charles N. Ash, Jr.

The Grand Rapids Student Advancement Foundation (GRSAF) announces the appointment of Charles N. Ash Jr. as board president. Charles has served on our board for 5 years before stepping into this new role. He will serve a two-year term as president of the board.

“It is an honor and a privilege to serve as board president of GRSAF, an organization that has done tremendous work for many years to support the students in GRPS,” said Ash, who graduated from Creston High School. “I look back on my years in GRPS with gratitude and pride.  I thank the many great teachers who helped me, as well as the staff and administrators.

I cannot emphasize enough the power of education to shape not only the futures of the students, but also the future of the City of Grand Rapids. I look forward to working closely with the GRSAF board and executive director to expand community-wide support for our mission.”

Ash replaces Deb Bailey as board president, who will continue to serve as an integral board member.

A graduate of Grand Rapids Public Schools, Ash is a partner at the law firm Warner Norcross & Judd LLP. He concentrates his practice in litigation and has extensive experience representing businesses in complex contract and tort litigation in state and federal courts throughout the country. He works with clients in manufacturing, transportation, energy, mining, oil and gas, financial services and other industries.

“I am excited to work with Charles as he steps into the role as board president.  As an alumnus himself, Charles’ commitment to the current students, his future fellow alumni, of the Grand Rapids Public Schools is unparalleled. As an attorney and community leader, Charles brings his expertise, vision and passion to support the Foundation’s vision to ensure the best educational opportunities and experiences for all of our students,” said Michele Suchovsky, executive director of the GRSAF.  “Through Charles’ leadership, the Grand Rapids Student Advancement Foundation is perfectly positioned to support the Grand Rapids Public Schools’ Transformation Plan and growth into the best mid-sized urban public school district in the country.”

A native of Grand Rapids, Ash holds an undergraduate degree from Calvin College and his doctor of juris prudence from Stanford University. He has been recognized by Best Lawyers in America and Michigan Super Lawyers for his litigation work. Ash is a graduate of Leadership Grand Rapids and Leadership West Michigan. He has served on the Alumni Association Board of Calvin College.

As the Grand Rapids Student Advancement Foundation looks ahead, we are excited to be led, once again, by an individual who is dedicated to the educational well-being of every student in the GRPS district!

Please join us in welcoming Charles Ash!

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