Michael and Deborah Harrison

In 2010, the Harrisons established the Jean D. Harrison Charitable Fund in memory of Michael’s mother. Jean was a great supporter of all things that made the Earth beautiful, Debby Harrison said. The Harrisons use the fund to support causes that were important to Michael’s mother.

Michael and Deborah Harrison“We are able to continue to give to what she so enjoyed,” Debby said. “The Community Foundation enables us to give to organizations such as Fenner, WKAR and the Nature Conservancy in her honor.”

Former Ingham County Circuit Judge Michael Harrison and his wife, Deborah Harrison, a longtime community volunteer, are enthusiastic about the importance of giving back — whether it’s time, talent or treasure.

The Community Foundation is secure, it’s safe. It has built a track record of that in its 24 years of granting. Generous people will know their money is safe and well-invested for the benefit of our community, forever."

— Deborah Harrison

“I would like to be Bill Gates, but not for the money,” Michael said. “I watch what he and his wife do with their money, and they’re so extraordinarily generous. They’re giving for such significant purposes.”

The Harrisons’ generosity also is significant. Whether it was helping in the beginning stages of the creation of Impression 5 Science Center and the Wharton Center Inner Circle, establishing educational scholarships or funding endowments for free mammograms and macular degeneration research, Michael and Debby take their charge to “do good” to heart.

“There are a variety of needs in Lansing. There are so many opportunities for people to make a big difference,” Debby said. “The time is right for the Community Foundation to be able to do more, and hopefully people will realize CRCF is a wonderful vehicle for doing so.”

The Harrisons were the recipients of the 2014 Lansing Chamber of Commerce Community Service Award. In a video honoring their work, Michael said, “Debby and I appreciate how fortunate we are. ... This is truly a labor of love without the labor. We have received back more than what we have given. We sincerely hope others may join us.” 

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