Meet Abigail, Community Engagement Coordinator

Abigail leads our efforts to build strong community networks around parks and green spaces, pulling from her experiences in Urban Forestry and local racial justice work. On the weekend, you can find her cheering “Go Green!”, facilitating a peer group for adult adoptees, and pet-sitting cutie animals through her business.

Let’s get a virtual coffee together and get to know each other, yeah?

Where are you from?

Grand Rapids!

How did you get connected to Friends?

When I was on the board for my neighborhood association, I got involved with some of the neighborhood tree plantings – and the rest is history!

so glad you’re here! tell us What you do day-to-day in your position

I connect with community stakeholders to envision ways to activate parks and plant trees together. I also drink a lot of coffee, although not technically a job requirement (Abigail and Kinsey have pipe dreams of opening a coffee shop one day – true story).

What is your favorite city of Grand Rapids park?

Martin Luther King Park is my most frequented because I can practically see it from my house! But my favorite park destination away from my home right now is Ken-O-Sha.

what is your Favorite tree?

The Gingko (you can check out Abigail’s video about the Gingko tree here!)

What is the last book you read?

I’m actually helping to facilitate Friends’ new book club so am reading The Overstory by Richard Powers for that. But personally, reading Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens.

When I’m not overdue on my bookclub reads, I really enjoy novels by Margaret Atwood.

go-to movie or TV show?

Arrested Development seasons 1-3 only, or any reality TV show.

Podcast you love?

I’m sorry, but I can’t possibly pick just one! I’m almost always listening to music or a podcast. Here are a few that I’ve binged over the years (prepare yourself – it’s quite the list!):

  • Reveal
  • Reply All
  • All Songs Considered
  • Call Your Girlfriend
  • Criminal
  • Snap Judgment
  • BA Foodcast
  • Ear Hustle
  • We’re Alive
  • Song Exploder
  • Radiolab
  • Same Same Different
  • 2 Dope Queens
  • Burnt Toast
  • Stuff You Should Know
  • Armchair Expert
  • This American Life
  • The Daily

wow. what a list! so What could we find you doing for fun these days?

Cooking when I have the time, walking a dog that isn’t mine (Abigail owns a pet-sitting business!), caring for my curly hair, lurking on an app called TikTok, or curating a perfect evening out on the town for my friends and family.

what’s an interesting fact about you that many people don’t know?

Well – I know more about professional NASCAR drivers than probably any other professional athletes. Also, I’ve never seen Star Wars.

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