In Praise of MANDI, and Our Nominee Darryl Johnson

LISC Milwaukee is hard at work in preparation for this year’s MANDI Awards – a celebration of the good work being done by non-profit organizations around our city. Like all awards programs the MANDI’s present a competition, but somehow the show goes on without the feeling of competitiveness.

Literally: Everyone is a winner and great organizations and people, (nominated or not), find reason to consider our community’s collective achievements and to pause for a moment to appreciate the doses of goodness that flow everyday in our city’s most needful environments. This year the Riverworks community can take particular pride in knowing that our Executive Director Darryl Johnson has been nominated for The Northern Trust Navigator Award for outstanding leadership.

Darryl’s 14 years leading the RDC has brought steady, significant improvements to our neighborhoods and business district. But, even more than the tangible, he has brought the agency and its mission closer to the people it is chartered to serve.

This nomination is a great honor for Darryl, the RDC, and all of the staff that have worked to gain the success achieved, which is not lost on Darryl. In his typical selfless manner he will quickly deflect this brief period of focused attention on him by spreading the credit to the many “teammates” that comprise his staff.

He is right to do so, but at this moment, I want to congratulate LISC Milwaukee for shedding some much-needed light on the excellent work being done by our leader. For years Darryl has quietly pursued his brand of excellence without fanfare and it is time that we all take notice.

The other nominees for this award include Diane De La Santos of City on a Hill, and Gretchen Mead of Victory Gardens Initiative. Both are also great contributors to our city’s quality of life and we should use their nomination as a reason to learn more about their organization’s mission.

On behalf of our Board of Directors I’d like to declare our unified support, praise, and gratitude to Darryl for all that he has contributed to our Harambee, Riverwest, and Business District communities.

The MANDI 2017 Award Program will be held on April 6.
To you Darryl: No Matter The Outcome – You’re A Winner to Us!

Carl Nilssen
Board Chair
Riverworks BID