Celebrating Local Black Heroes: Matt Lynn
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Meet Matt Lynn, a man whose life is a testament to the power of mentorship and giving back. As the CEO of Boys & Girls Clubs, he has dedicated himself to creating opportunities for young people, just as he himself was once inspired and guided by mentors who changed the course of his life.
THE POWER OF MENTORSHIP
One of the biggest influences in Lynn’s life was his father, who he shares was his “greatest mentor.” Growing up in a family of five, Lynn was fortunate to have a father who actively engaged with his children, despite the demands of owning his own construction company. From his father, Lynn learned valuable lessons in work ethic and family balance, shaping the man he is today.
GIVING BACK: A LIFE MISSION
Matt Lynn’s commitment to giving back is deeply rooted in his core values. As a volunteer in his community and church, he spends his free time engaging with others, finding fulfillment in taking care of his community. For Lynn, giving back isn’t just a selfless act; it is an integral part of his life mission. He believes in leaving a lasting impact on the lives of those around him. “I want to be known for pouring into people because that’s who I am and that’s what I believe in,” he shares.
Coaching his own children’s sports teams keeps him connected with them while maintaining a healthy work-life balance. In addition to coaching, Lynn serves on various boards, including Housing Incorporated of Battle Creek. He actively supports advocacy groups, focusing on BIPOC issues, women’s issues, and social matters. Lynn understands that the biggest impact often comes from affecting change at the legislative level, and he strives to make a difference where he is.
WISDOM FOR HIS YOUNGER SELF
Reflecting on his journey, Lynn would advise his younger self to discover his authentic identity and stay true to it. “We’re always navigating, trying to figure out who we are at our core. There are people who never find who they really are. When you figure it out and decide how to show up in life, hold true to it. Don’t deviate, and don’t question it,” Lynn muses.
The constant search for self and changing roles can be overwhelming. To find one’s core, Lynn draws inspiration from Shakespeare’s words, ” All the world is a stage; and the people its players. There are many entrances and many exits, and in one person’s life they will play many roles.” He believes that knowing who you are and deciding how to navigate life with integrity is crucial. Staying true to oneself and standing firm in that can lead to a life of purpose and fulfillment.
IMPACTING OTHERS THROUGH FAITH
Lynn’s life is guided by three core elements: faith, family, and the people surrounding him. His faith influences his decisions and leads him to positively impact the souls of individuals. As a Christian, he aspires to embody the teachings and principles of Jesus, understanding that his time on Earth is meant to serve a higher purpose. “Being a Christian is so much more than just a label. I want to do what Jesus said we should do,” he shares.
As a CEO and mentor, Matt Lynn understands the importance of self-care and work-life balance- though he admits it is a work in progress for him. His family plays a crucial role in reminding him to take care of himself and spend quality time together. Drawing from his athlete days, he emphasizes the significance of physical well-being and dedicates time to exercise.
LEAVING A LASTING LEGACY
For Lynn, the legacy he hopes to leave is tied to his hopes of impacting younger generations for good. “My aspiration is to stand in front of God one day and have Him say, ‘Well done, my good and faithful servant,’” he remarks. Lynn aims to be remembered as a man who lived for his family and left a positive mark on generations to come.
He acknowledges the gifts he has received from those who came before him and feels an obligation to build upon their legacy for the betterment of the future. “It’s not lost on me that I am standing on the backs of great people … I want to ensure that I take care of what was left for me and prepare the way for the ones who come after me,” he reflects.
COMMUNITY: THE HEART OF EVERYTHING
To Lynn, community holds a profound meaning. Whether it’s southwest Michigan, his family, or his work, the sense of togetherness and support is vital. Matt Lynn’s journey has been shaped by the mentorship and guidance he received from his community. He strives to pay it forward by being a positive influence in the lives of others.
Matt Lynn’s life is a testament to the power of mentorship and giving back. From his father to his sports coaches, he has experienced firsthand the impact mentors can have on shaping a person’s character and life trajectory. Through his commitment to giving back, Lynn is leaving a legacy that extends beyond his CEO title – a legacy of wisdom, guidance, and compassion for the betterment of the community and future generations.