The Michael A. Finney Memorial Fund supports the development of future leaders and entrepreneurs. Grants will be awarded to Miami-Dade County’s Academic Leaders Council Organizations and educational institutions close to Michael’s heart, students and professionals studying economic development, social impact, or related fields. Additionally, the Fund plans to support youth programs that inspire and affirm disadvantaged youth. Michael’s greatest passion was mentoring business professionals and youth, and your support continues his vision and legacy of economically strengthening communities in our country. Read Michael’s story.
Some organizations that may receive support, include the following, as well as other local organizations meeting a similar purpose:
Academic Leaders Council – Council is composed of the presidents of Barry University, Florida International University, Florida Memorial University, Miami Dade College, St. Thomas University, the University of Miami and the Superintendent of MDCPS. The Council discusses challenges and opportunities within Miami-Dade’s educational environment and works together to develop programs to address them. Finney was a dedicated past member.
Saginaw Valley State University – Supports Business students attending Michael A. Finney’s Alma mater.
Orchard Children’s Services – Orchards Children’s Services is one of the largest child welfare agencies in the state of Michigan. Over 8,000 Michigan children are serviced by this organization. They support disenfranchised high school graduates that pursue education beyond high school. Michael was a dedicated past board member.
Michael was the President and Chief Executive Officer of the Miami Dade Beacon Council in Miami, Florida. The not‐for-profit public‐private partnership focused on job creation and economic growth by engaging local, national, and international audiences. He helped secure business expansions in the tech, finance, cryptocurrency, health care innovation, aviation, trade and logistics areas. Under Michael’s leadership, development efforts generated over 1 billion dollars of annual economic impact. Finney served on the Miami Branch of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
In 2015, Finney founded Community Ventures Resources, Incorporated, a social impact consulting business to assist communities in developing and executing pathways out of poverty for those who were disconnected from employment resources. As an Intermittent Lecturer at the University of Michigan, he inspired the Stephen Ross School of Business students to tackle these and future disparities.
Michael served as Senior Adviser for Economic Growth for the State of Michigan’s Governor Rick Snyder and as President and CEO of the Michigan Economic Development Corporation. His team changed the economic development landscape by adding 300,000 jobs, raising $13.5 billion in new investments, revitalizing exportation programs, assisting urban communities with home mortgages and insurance affordability, and creating the famous Pure Michigan Campaign. These accomplished milestones awarded him and his team numerous national awards and accolades.
Michael established two start up organizations and served as their President/CEO. At Ann Arbor Spark, he turned this region into Michigan’s Silicon Valley-esk hub. At the Greater Rochester Enterprise, Finney built a successful organization that attracted numerous businesses to the upstate New York region. Prior roles that developed his business knowledge included: Vice President of Emerging Business Sectors for the State of Michigan, Senior Vice President/General Manager Thompson Aerospace, Assistant City Manager for the City of Saginaw, Admission Representative at Saginaw Valley State University, Sales Manager at the JC Penny Corporation, and as an Accountant for Deloitte and Touche.
His journey of excellence found initial footing when he was awarded a football scholarship to Saginaw Valley State College. Other accomplishments included being a member of the college’s first football team, Charter Member/President of Iota Epsilon Chapter of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc., President of the Student Association (1978-1979), awarded the 2009 Distinguished Alumni Award, Commencement Speaker for the Class of 2010 and served on several boards. He credits the University for providing support and mentorship that assisted in launching his career. Michael received his bachelor degree in business administration from Saginaw Valley State College and an MA degree in human resources from Central Michigan University.