Above & Beyond - Recognitions and Achievements

Your city government is regularly recognized for excellence in service delivery, efficiency, safety, community service, collaboration, and technological innovations, all of which play a key role in making Midland a great place to be. City staff continually prove, on and off the job, that they're willing to go the extra mile for the community. We do this through continual learning, shared knowledge, new ideas, cost savings efforts, and more.

The City also partners with citizens and community groups to bring about more local, state, and national accolades for our outstanding city.

Here are just some of the ways Midland goes above and beyond.

Joan Grady - Library-MDN Screen Capture

Moms in Prayer... Grace A. Dow Memorial Library’s Joan Grady and friends were featured in a recent Midland Daily News article about their program, “Moms in Prayer,” for mothers with children in school. Moms meet twice each week to lift up area children and teachers in prayer. Joan leads a group that prays specifically for college students who face challenges and pressures in school.

Top Place to Live: Once again, Midland has been named one of America’s top places to set up house. So says Livability, an online resource that explores what makes small-to-medium sized cities great places to live. Livability praised us for some of our many high points: cultural opportunities such as theaters and museums; lots of healthcare options; a strong educational system; good housing choices; and more. (September 2015)

Riverside Recognition - 2015

Riverside Receives Accolades: Riverside Place was voted Number 1 in both the Independent and Supportive Living categories in the 2015 Reader’s Choice Awards, Midland Daily News. The community is an important part of the fabric of Midland, offering a place where neighbors help neighbors, friendships blossom, and residents can share stories and laughter. Riverside... a great place to live!

Making a Difference, One Home at a Time... in early August, 15 Midland Police staffers joined forces with other community groups during the Habitat for Humanity’s Neighborhood Revitalization Initiative. The City’s team dedicated this year's project work to Patrol Sergeant Rob Booth, who passed away in June after a courageous battle with cancer. Police personnel wore a t-shirt designed to honor Booth, who helped orchestrate the first police team to work on the project in 2012.


“Touch a Truck” Rides Again... The Grace A. Dow Memorial Library’s annual Touch a Truck event was once again a smashing success. Kids had a blast climbing aboard the City of Midland’s heavy-duty work trucks, high-speed police vehicles, and the big red fire truck during the July 23 event. The event continues to draw more and more people each year, with an all-time high of 1,500 people attending this year. (July 2015)

Way to Go, Public Services!  The Department of Public Services was unable to get a replacement part for a canoe launch near the Tridge before an upcoming event, so City staff built the aluminum rack on which the sign is mounted. Their handiwork helped keep the sign in place until a new piece could arrive from our supplier. Just one of the many fabrication projects our utility guys undertake to make and enhance existing equipment. (August 2015)

Canoe Launch Project-2015

Another Feather in Midland's Cap: Our community has been deemed one of the top small U.S. communities for a speedy move up the wage ladder. The praise came through Headlight Data, an online resource for community and economic research. (July 2015)

Midland Most Resembles the U.S.: Red, white, and blue… apple pie… and Midland?? According to finance resource WalletHub, Midland is in the top 10 of small communities that most closely match typical America. A study of various demographics determined that Midland is most similar to other American communities in terms of gender, household income, and educational attainment. (June 2015)

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Midland: a Great Hometown: ABC-TV12 featured Midland during their morning show segment, “Our Hometown,” on July 17. During six different segments, community leaders hyped many of the positives about our town. Of the eight people interviewed, half represented the City: Melissa Barnard, Diane Brown Wilhelm, Marcie Post, and Selina Tisdale. And, former city manager Cliff Miles was recognized as a TV12 “Hometown Hero” for his 40+ years of service to Midland. What a great opportunity to showcase our city and municipal government!

Building Strong Relationships: Bob Arnold (Fire) plus Ryan Chapman and Chris Inman (Building) received high praise from the Midland Area Real Estate Investors Assn. for their talk on code enforcement and the City’s efforts to share knowledge that can help keep buildings and people safe. Their info helps people in the same field understand each others’ concerns and challenges with the common goal of having safe housing. (July 2015)


Kudos to Police & Fire: Midland police officers and firefighters were noted in the Daily News for the many positive comments spreading throughout the Facebook community after their quick response to help a baby locked inside a car. Our public safety crews truly protect and serve our community! (June 2015)

Best For Business-NerdWallet-2015

Great for Business: Midland is a great place to hang out a shingle. So says online consumer finance resource NerdWallet, which conducted a study to find the best places in Michigan to start a business. (June 2015)

Another Positive Plug... Midland was ranked second on a list of the top 10 best places to live in Michigan. The “Only In Your State” website gave us praise for being family-friendly, with low crime and plenty of things to do. (June 2015)

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Carrying the Torch for Special Olympics: At the Opening ceremonies in Mt. Pleasant in May 2015, Deputy Police Chief Rod Roten was honored to light the flame at the start of the 2015 Summer Games. Rod was given this rare opportunity because of his significant involvement with the organization.

Midland Police also got involved in Special Olympics through a fundraiser in May. Officers raised $1,650 while serving customers at Bennigan's. Thanks, guys!

74,028... the number of people who’ve watched one of our most popular videos (about traffic signals, from 2010) on the City’s YouTube channel as of July 15, 2015. Our YouTube channel features 350+ videos from our award-winning “City in 15” show, with a few of them drawing tens of thousands of views. Be sure to bookmark our channel and return each month for new news you can use. "City in 15" is produced for MGTV-188.


Fiscally Responsible: For the 26th year in a row, the Government Finance Officers Association awarded the City a Certificate of Achievement for excellence in financial reporting for our comprehensive annual report for 2014. The Certificate is the highest form of recognition in governmental accounting and financial reporting, and a source of pride for the City, which publishes an easily readable and efficiently organized report. Kudos to the Finance Department for their outstanding work on the report! (June 2015)

Beekeeper to the Rescue-2015

City Staffer a Bee-whisperer! Department of Public Services’ Paul Matzke sprang into action after DPS got wind of a swarm of honey bees located 20’ up in a tree. Private beekeepers contacted to help didn’t have the means to reach the swarm, so Paul – a beekeeper in his spare time – came to the rescue. Using his personal gear and a DPS truck, Paul removed the swarm and got them to a safe place, resolving the issue by acting quickly and at no additional cost to DPS. Way to go, Paul, for using your talents to help the little critters! (May 2015)

Running for the Health of It: May 17 was a great day for Rodney Roten (Police), who won second place in his age division during the Great Lakes Bay Half Marathon. Rod has completed eight full marathons, but has lost count on the number of half marathons and 10k and 5k races he’s run. Rod is gearing up for marathon number nine this fall. Way to go, Rod, for hitting the open road with health in mind. (May 2015)

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Firefighters Helping Firefighters: Midland Fire is ramping up a new program that teaches firefighters how to save other firefighters during emergency calls. The Rapid Intervention Team program is led by specially-trained Midland firefighters, and will be shared with neighboring departments as it’s further developed. Just one of the ways Midland shares info and services to help keep local communities safe.

Fire Dept Cancer Fundraiser - April 2015-4

"Heading" Towards Health... that's been the focus of a fundraising event for children afflicted with cancer. For two years, City of Midland firefighter Max Kopplin (far left) has organized a local event where participants have their hair shaved in support of children who are fighting the disease. The April 2015 event raised over $2,200 for cancer research, with the support of citizens and Midland Police and Fire departments. (April 2015)


Go Green: Cars lined up on April 21, 2015, when the City Landfill accepted household hazardous waste for free, in recognition of Earth Day. Citizens dropped off their household chemicals, fertilizers, automotive liquid wastes, and other items to be recycled or destroyed. Free drop-off events help keep hazardous products from being dumped down the drain or thrown into the Landfill. Four collection events are held each year, with an amazing 3-4 tons of waste collected at each!


Out and About: MPD Community Relations Officer Dan Keeler, seen in this Midland Daily News photo, demonstrates the significant amount of time he spends working with the schools and various youth-focused groups on what to do in case of an emergency, stranger danger, good decision-making, risks of drug abuse, and much more. (April 6, 2015)

United Way Honors City Employee: Joe Sova (Water Dept.) won the United Way Torch Bearer Award for his service to Midland's United Way. Joe, who's coordinated the City's program for eight years, was recognized for demonstrating a true passion for sharing the LIVE UNITED message.

The City has also received the 2015 Companies That Care Award, which recognizes organizations committed to strengthening our community by giving, advocating, and volunteering. This is the fourth year the City has been honored. (April 2015)

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The State of our City: Midland Mayor Maureen Donker shared her annual State of the City address with the Midland Area Chamber of Commerce on March 11, 2015. The mayor touched on what the Midland Difference is. Watch a video and read her speech to find out what the mayor had to say. (March 2015)

2014 Arbor Day Central Park (2) Histed

Impacting the Environment: City Forestry was awarded for planting 75 saplings to help re-establish trees in an area hard hit by the Emerald Ash Borer. Michigan's Arboriculture Society applauded the City for 2014 Arbor Day activities in Central Park. Dow Gardens and Eastlawn Elementary students joined in the effort. (February 2015) The City and Dow Gardens were again applauded for their efforts for Arbor Day 2015 work.

Officer Adds to Special Olympics Program: Officer Dan Keeler received the State of Michigan Special Olympics Law Enforcement Torch Run award for organizing the Midland Police Honor Guard’s involvement in events, and for coordinating with honor guards from around Michigan and Canada to play a part in the events. He was also helpful in raising funds for the program. (January 2015)

Torch Bearer Award-Dan Keeler-2