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Our Event Staff

Deborah Droppers

Founder & Executive Director

"My mom, Shirley Van Hoeven, inspires me every day and it is in her spirit that I founded the Center.  She lived her life for college students when she was teaching at Western Michigan University.  Her impact still resonates through her Scholarship Fund in the Communications Department.

 

This center is my dream. I love working with non-profits and enjoy the chaos of working with interns. I am inspired to think of new ideas to make events more interactive, customer-focused, and multi-layered.  I teach at Western Michigan University and run the Event Management Minor.  It's insanely fun.  Every day I learn something new in preparation for the lectures that hopefully engage, inspire, transform.  Within this pledge, we celebrate the passion of the product and the people we serve.

 

 It's an amazing adventure".   

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Olivia Darmos

Event Coordinator & Program Director

"The crazy part of events is you never stop learning from them. My internship here has taught me so much, from the details of planning to the anticipation of event day. Working for KELC, and for nonprofits in general, you get that intimate experience with events, you really get to build them from the ground up in some cases, and that's the coolest part. 

Our team is so dedicated to the surrounding community and putting our best foot forward, not only at every event, but throughout the entire process and all that goes into them behind the scenes. I am blessed and so grateful to be doing what I love and surrounded by people as passionate as I am about others, our community, our vision, etc.  

I couldn't imagine doing anything else surrounded by anyone else at this point in my life. I love what I do and who I do it with, & I couldn't ask for more"

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Current Event Coordinators & interns

Bryce Munn

Major: Public Relations

Minor: Marketing

Favorite Event: Food Truck Rallies

KELC Project: PR and Marketing materials

What I enjoy most about working at KELC is seeing the outcome of the behind the scenes work we do here. Interacting with the community and watching them enjoy the events we put together is a rewarding experience. 

Meghan Clarke

Major: Recreation Management

Minor: Event Management 

Favorite Event: 

KELC Project: Skeletour

I love KELC because it's an environment where I can be hands on and have opportunities to work unique events alongside people that are working towards similar future career goals. 

Noa Green 

Major: Sports Management 

Minor: General Business

Favorite Event: Kalamazoo Holiday Parade

KELC Project: New Year's Fest

I enjoy KELC because of how hands-on everything is. There isn't a day I come into work and am not thrown into some element of the event planning process, which makes for a great learning experience. 

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Matt Abo Jaude

Major: Sports and Recreation Management
 
Minor: Event Management

Favorite Event: Turkey Trot

KELC Project: A little bit of everything!

It's just so awesome to see people light up and interact at events. From being behind the scenes to on stage, it's one of a kind to experience events this intimately.