New leadership on Lakeshore Advantage board brings expertise in key focus industries

Two new members to the Lakeshore Advantage board of directors bring new expertise in key focus industries.

Phil LaMothe, plant manager of fairlife in Coopersville, and Nick Nykerk, president of Lakewood Construction in Holland, will serve three-year terms.

“We look forward to learning from Nick and Phil’s expertise,” says Board Chair Neil Boehm. “Nick will serve as a resource as the team works to add industrial sites and understand the ever-changing construction industry to support our growing employers. Phil will bring the agriculture and food processing voice to our board — a key and thriving industry sector for our region.”

Bringing expertise

LaMothe has worked in food processing for 11 years. He is the plant director at fairlife. He has extensive food processing experience, having worked at Gerber, Nestle, and Leprino Foods before joining fairlife. 

Nykerk is president of Lakewood Construction, a commercial construction firm that serves clients throughout West Michigan, bringing with him nearly 20 years of experience in the industry. He is also currently the chair of the Associated Builders and Contractors Association.

“Our board is representative of the geographic region and industries our organization serves,” says President Jennifer Owens. “Their expertise helps ensure our organization continues to be responsive to the changing needs of the region’s primary employers. We are looking forward to learning from them.”

Setting policy and goals

The Lakeshore Advantage board of directors sets the overall policy of the organization, long- and short-term goals, and assures adequate funds are in place to fulfill the work plan. A full list of the organization’s board members can be found here. 

Lakeshore Advantage is a nonprofit economic development organization started in 2003 by forward-focused business and community leaders to ensure current and future generations want to live and work in a vibrant Lakeshore economy. Lakeshore Advantage assists primary employers — from startups to established global corporations — in West Michigan’s Allegan and Ottawa counties.

In 2022, Lakeshore Advantage supported 33 business growth projects consisting of $2.38 billion invested by local companies and $436.3 million in support funds leveraged in the two counties. Business growth projects resulted in 3,352 new and retained jobs in the area. In addition, Lakeshore Advantage provided economic support to 302 primary employers and 63 startup companies in the two counties. More at:

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Read more articles by Shandra Martinez.