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Grand Rapids Business Journal honor top newsmakers of 2016

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The Grand Rapids Business Journal held their annual Newsmakers of the Year award ceremony for 2016, as honors were given to leaders in the community who shaped the news last year. Editors and journalists from the Grand Rapids Business Journal reviewed hundreds of stories from the past year to compile a list of 53 finalists who made headlines in 2016. 16 different categories ranging from Economic Development to Beverages to Sports had three finalists each, with the award for newsmaker of the year going to just one. 

In the Arts & Entertainment category, Gilmore Collection CEO Greg Gilmore took home the award for his $16 million project 20 Monroe Live, a new music venue in downtown Grand Rapids that will host 120 concerts each year. Opening next week, Gilmore said what patrons can expect.

“We’ll have obviously the opening with the largest entertainment provider in the world, but also ten different genres of music and entertainment all in thirty days, so it’s going to be very, a very wide demographic that we will be appealing to,” Gilmore said.

Grand Rapids Public Schools Superintendent Teresa Weatherall Neal won the education prize as the new Grand Rapids Public Museum High School may redefine the school district once it opens. The new super school was chosen from a pool of 700 national applicants and given a $10 million grant. Superintendent Neal.

“I hope that it becomes the high school for the United States of America. This award means a lot, because it really is a re-imagining of high schools, when we went to school, kids don’t learn that way now, right, we need to involve them, design thinking, get their hands on, and really let them participate, and feel the learning, and I think that is the way to do, so I think this is just the tip of the iceberg," she said. 

A complete list of award winners can be found here.

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