Joe Rashid, MCD: Executive Director
Born and raised in Detroit, Joe has spent his career dedicated to achieving equitable community development via authentic networking, social entrepreneurship, and real estate development.
As one of the founding Detroit Action Strategists for ioby, Joe helped launch a unique model of crowdfunding that helps Detroit residents craft successful campaigns, fundraising plans, timelines, and budgets to realize specific community- or neighborhood-based projects.
As the former Outreach Director for Brightmoor Alliance, Joe worked with the Community Development Advocates of Detroit to lead the land use and quality of life planning process that resulted in the “Restore the ‘Moor” neighborhood-based framework. Joe also worked with Southwest Housing Solutions to coordinate a workforce development job training program with a special focus on deconstruction, weatherization, and landscaping.
Passionate about creating community-based solutions to address community-identified needs, Joe founded of E. Warren Development Corp, to facilitate the equitable development of the E. Warren Corridor and adjacent neighborhoods, focusing on community engagement, development facilitation, business incubation, and neighborhood based site control.
Joe holds a Masters Degree in Community Development from the University of Detroit Mercy and lives in the East English Village Neighborhood with his wife Dana and their 2 dogs, Rocket and Enzo.
BrieAnn Bell, Market Manager
BrieAnn Bell’s is our Market Manager with over 5 years of experience in the community engagement arena. She specializes is strategic planning and works regularly on community initiatives within the Detroit area. She is a strong believer that building community starts with civic engagement and boots on the ground initiatives. She also strives to support community in a collaborative effort that incorporates residents, local business owners, and city leadership.
BrieAnn developed her strong connection and values working as the Volunteer Coordinator on the 2018 and 2020 Rashida Talib Congressional Campaign. As BrieAnn operated in this space, it allowed her to implement civic engagement initiatives. This role also afforded her the foundation to offer quality and direct support for constituents within the Detroit area. Navigating residents through city and state funded programs gave her a sense of accomplishment.
After a successful campaign BrieAnn brought her talents to Grandmont Rosedale Development Corp (GRDC). As the Economic Development Specialist and Co- working space Manager she supported corridor business alongside local entrepreneurs. BrieAnn utilized the small business eco-system to support and uplift businesses for long-term success.
Transitioning her knowledge based to EWDC as Outreach Specialist and Market Manager was the ideal next step to develop her career. BrieAnn continuously works alongside E. Warren Business that gives her insight to lead startup – and operating businesses to appropriate development opportunities. Being a part of activating space and introducing business owners’ resources by means of a Farmer’s market has been a fulling experience for her. BrieAnn hopes to expand her reach and empower the E. Warren community to be sustainable, equitable, and community that reflects its residents.
Coming from an educational background, BrieAnn is thrilled to serve the community in a different capacity. Always aiming to educate, development and empower, aligns with her passion as a community advocate.
Sarah Feldman, Operations and Special Projects Manager
Sarah is our Operations & Special Projects Manager. With a BA in Comparative History of Ideas, a BA in Photography, and an M.Ed. in Educational Leadership and Administration, Sarah has been involved in education and community development for almost 20 years.
Born and raised on the West Coast, Sarah moved to Detroit in 2010 where she started her educational career as a teacher. Later, she had the privilege of being on a founding team to open a school in Detroit as well as a school in Los Angeles. She later worked as Director of Strategy for a local school network. She brings deep community ties, and experience in operations and startups to the team and is excited to support her neighborhood.
The community and Detroit have been an integral part of what drives Sarah and the work she does. She has sat on the board of directors for the Downtown Boxing Gym Youth Program and was a Citizen Philanthropist for Detroit4Detroit. Currently, Sarah sits on the board and is a producer for TEDxDetroit. She is also on the leadership team for the Black Male Educators Alliance of Michigan.
In her spare time, Sarah is an entrepreneur and has been running a jewelry business for almost 3 years. She also enjoys spending time outside with her dogs and biking.
Darnell Adams: Board President
Darnell was raised in Ravendale and later Cornerstone Village, he earned a Bachelor of Science in Urban & Regional Planning from Michigan State before eventually returning to the city. Since then, Darnell has worked in a variety of organizations, developing his skills and the community around him.
As the Community Development Coordinator for the Warren/Conner Development Coalition, now known as the Eastside Community Network, Darnell focused heavily on developing community relations and reducing blight on Detroit’s east side. He became a key figure in the development of the Lower Eastside Action Plan, an organization focused on the development of people, places and plans for sustainable neighborhood growth.
Afterward, Darnell became involved with the Detroit Land Bank Authority (DLBA), first as a volunteer and eventually as the Director of Inventory Management. His leadership skills and passion for community development made Darnell an asset to the DLBA. He helped created new land disposition strategies focused on neighborhood stabilization. He intentionally partnered with community groups as well as the City of Detroit and was invaluable in matters regarding public space, managing and triaging nearly 95,000 publicly owned properties.
Darnell Adams joined Invest Detroit as the Vice President of Implementation of the Strategic Neighborhood Fund (SNF) in January 2019. In this role, Darnell will help implement projects supported by SNF that intends to make Detroit full of livable, walkable and vibrant neighborhoods.
Dr. Alaina Jackson: Board Vice President
A graduate of Cass Technical High School, she received a Bachelor of Science degree in communications and urban studies from Northwestern University as well as a Master of Planning degree and a Doctorate of Policy, Planning and Development from the University of Southern California. She currently serves as the Program Director of Workforce and Talent Initiatives for the United Way of Southeast Michigan. Alaina considers herself a champion for economic development projects that are place- and asset-based, and which grant her the opportunity to unravel complicated urban problems. She took these passions with her as she worked abroad exploring urban centers and historically marginalized communities while living and working in Mexico, Germany, Costa Rica and Brazil. These experiences challenged her to be more inclusive and creative in her problem solving. Her weekends are spent reading books or spending quality time with her husband.
Miah Davis: Board Treasurer
Miah Davis has over 10 years experience in the nonprofit industry and pivoted to a career in fundraising in 2015. She is dedicated to not only increasing donor awareness of the true needs of nonprofits and how to best serve communities in a holistic and transparent way, but also in creating truly equitable spaces for nonprofit employees to grow, thrive, and sustain their careers. Her professional practice focuses on addressing the lack of diversity within the fundraising profession and donor pipelines of cultural institutions, and she strives to make sure that people of color see themselves reflected in the leadership of the organizations they support.
Miah holds a bachelor’s degree in Painting from Wayne State University and has previously held positions at the College for Creative Studies, Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit, Kresge Arts in Detroit, and Wayne State University’s Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies Department. She is interested in joining the board of the East Warren Development Corp to support the continued growth of the commercial corridor and provide a pathway for sustained impact to the communities EWDC serves. By providing guidance and leadership on strategic fundraising initiatives, she can support leveraging the wisdom of residents and business owners to know and lead communication on their needs, and connect EWDC with donors who can make a truly transformational impact on the neighborhood.
Outside of work , her hobbies include ornamental horticulture, obsessive research on new developments and best practices within the fundraising profession, discussing American politics, and sharing her love of North America’s only marsupial, the Virginia Opossum, with anyone who will listen.
Larissa Richardson, MCD: Board Secretary
Larissa Richardson is the Chief of Staff for Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib. Previously she has held the position of Director of Collaborative Workspace at TechTown Detroit supporting and managing TechTown’s coworking and event space. As Director, Larissa is charged with supporting the member-based entrepreneurial community within its facility and creating a memorable experience for clients and customers. Larissa leads a team of several individuals that help to connect and support entrepreneurs and small businesses find space that helps them work and grow.
Before this position Larissa served as the Economic Development Program Manager for Grandmont Rosedale Development Corporation, supporting small businesses and entrepreneurs in and around Grandmont Rosedale. She served as a connector for small businesses to resources and programs to help local entrepreneurs launch and grow their businesses. Larissa also helped to facilitate entrepreneurial training workshops and programs to provide access for businesses with the necessary tools and information they need for growth. In addition she helped to support and develop programming within the Grandmont Rosedale commercial corridors for promotional activities and events to help drive and increase consumer traffic for local businesses.
For over 5 years, Larissa has worked as a community developer and advocate for various mediums across the city of Detroit. In 2017 and 2018 she was recognized by NEIdeas as a community ambassador for local businesses and by Comcast Business for her commitment and dedication to servicing small businesses. She has also been recognized in several local publications in Crain’s, The Detroit Hub, and Comcast Newsmaker for her engagement and work to support commercial revitalization in Grandmont Rosedale.
Larissa is also a board member for the Grandmont Community Association, board member of the Mary Turner Center for Advocacy and board member for the Urban Neighborhood Initiatives (UNI). Larissa graduated with a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor in Political Science and Urban Studies in 2012 and earned a Master’s degree in Community Development from the University of Detroit Mercy in 2014.Larissa currently lives within Grandmont Rosedale with her husband, Dante Richardson.
Sean Riddell, Esq.
Sean Riddell earned his Bachelor of Arts from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor in 2009. In order to support himself, he opened his first business when he was nineteen years old. After graduation, he worked in retail for four years before attending law school.
Earning his Juris Doctorate from Wayne State University Law School in Detroit in 2016. During law school, he competed in the National Appellate Advocacy Competition as a member of the school’s Moot Court team. He also drafted a note on the impact of the introduction of Form 1023-EZ on charitable organizations and their client populations as well as acted as the Symposium Director for the Journal of Law in Society. Lastly, he was a competitor in both the Student Trial Advocacy Program and the Transactional Law Competition.
Sean received a number of awards during law school. He was awarded the Ira J. Spoon Endowed Award of 2016, which was conferred for a paper submitted outlining ways in which supporting black-owned businesses would foster productive urban development. Sean was also awarded the Lincoln Brigade Veterans Scholarship, which is awarded to those with an active commitment to social justice. Lastly, he was awarded the the National Lawyers Guild’s Outstanding Law Student Award in 2016.
During law school, Sean worked for a civil rights firm where he supported the partners in a major personal injury case against a defense contractor, as well as in constitutional claims, Americans with Disabilities Act claims, and habeas corpus petitions. After law school, he worked for an attorney that represented employees in discrimination, whistleblower, and harassment claims.
Prior to opening his private practice, Sean worked for a legal aid organization. While there, he specialized in prosecuting affirmative claims against landlords, defending against land contract forfeitures, defending against debt collection lawsuits, and assisting people with utility shut-offs. In addition, Sean handled a significant number of divorce, custody, and personal protection cases as well as eviction defense cases. The fast-paced environment of legal aid provided him with the tools to run an efficient and effective practice without sacrificing my compassion for people going through some of the most stressful times in their lives.
Scott Field grew up here in Michigan outside of Detroit. After high school, he joined the Army where he served 5 years in Human Intelligence with 1 deployment to Afghanistan. After getting out as a Sergeant, Scott moved to the Bay Area in California to go to school for business at San Francisco State University. Upon finishing school Scott moved back to Michigan, and Detroit in particular. Growing up, his father worked in the city at the old Packard building and would take him with to work. Scott always had a love for Detroit, and knew one day he would own a home here. Scott moved to the East English Village neighborhood nearly 4 years ago now and loves it! Since then Scott has been getting more and more involved in the community and believes being able to serve on the board would allow him to have a more direct effect on the community in which he lives and loves. From being a part of the East Warren Farmers’ Market, playing on the neighborhood softball team, to starting a fitness class here in the area; serving on the board is just another way for Scott to engage and build his community into a better place for everyone.
Marcia Spivey, Esq.
Marcia is a Detroit native and current resident. She attended high school at 17200 Southampton, Finney High School. She still has family and friends who live in all three communities in which the East Warren Development Corporation. Marcia has a vested interest in supporting the development of the East Warren corridors. She is a mother of 2 small children who are educated in the Detroit Public School Community District. Additionally, Marcia is actively involved in community advocacy in her neighborhood. She serves as Secretary for the Regent Park Community Association and most of their work involves bringing access and opportunity to the residents. Marcia is motivated by the economic and community development that is taking place on East Warren — it is her home and she is honored that the opportunity to serve has presented itself.
Isaac Hunter, Jr.
Isaac Hunter Jr. is a planner with DTE Energy, a father, a community driven entrepreneur, and ten-year resident of the Cornerstone neighborhood of Detroit. As a planner with DTE, Isaac has been able to see the growth and development taking place throughout Metro Detroit, and is committed to working with individuals and organizations that are working to support the equitable growth of the eastside of Detroit. Isaac was born, raised, and educated in Detroit, and has worked over the years in various capacities to establish spaces and services that support and engage Detroiters, whether in opening a salon with his wife, an educator in DPSCD, serving as a deacon-in-training at the Mount Pleasant Missionary Baptist Church, or offering mentorship and guidance to young people, most recently those in the DTE SYIP program. Isaac is pursuing a board position with the East Warren Development Corporation for the opportunity to support the continued progression of the Cornerstone neighborhood and the broader East Warren community, and to share his background and experiences as a Detroiter and planner.
Graduate of Oakland University where she received her Bachelor’s of Integrated Studies in Business, Human Resources and Communication. Candice then received her Masters of Science Administration in Human Resources from Central Michigan University. She has worked in the mental health field for over seven years, helping clients who joined the mental health court program find jobs, housing, applying for benefits, ECT. Candice currently owns The Craft Cafe Detroit, located on East Warren, that is a paint and sip facility. She has been in business since 2016. Candice lives and works in the EEV and Morningside area and has been over here so my life. Candice wants to be a part of the changes happening on East Warren and want to encourage more entrepreneurs to open up on East Warren.