December 11, 2018

AF Community

AF Around the Country – Central and Midwest Chapters

By: Leah Nalepa

Last week, America’s Future Foundation featured the west coast and southwest chapters, highlighting the work they accomplished throughout the year. This week, AF celebrates the central and midwest chapters and the partners they teamed up with to bring free-market issues to the forefront of community conversations and to cultivate young leaders. Check out just some of the fantastic events these regions hosted!

Past Events

AF Around the Country - Central and Midwest ChaptersPolicy Brief: K-12 Education Innovation – Columbus
At the beginning of the year, AF-Columbus partnered with Americans for Prosperity, Citizens for Community Values, and the Heartland Institute to discuss education reform in Ohio. Columbus young professionals heard various perspectives from panelists Lennie Jarratt, from The Heartland Institute, and Ezra Escudero, from Americans for Prosperity. The night concluded with a lively discussion over drinks about reforms affecting Ohio’s parents and students rand how AF members can get more involved.

Jackson Marijuana Ordinances – Jackson
AFF-Jackson hosted a conversation on this year’s amended ordinance to decriminalize marijuana by the Jackson, MS, City Council. The amendment limits the maximum penalty for possession of small amounts, though marijuana possession is still against city, state, and federal laws. With this amendment, Jackson joins 13 other cities, including Atlanta, Memphis, New Orleans, Pittsburgh and Washington, DC, which have lessened penalties for personal possession.

How I Built My Business – Milwaukee
In the spring, AF-Milwaukee hosted another event in their series of “How I Built My Business.” This event featured Scott and Gretchen Ecker of Ecker Envelope, sharing their successes and challenges in running a small business. The couple also shared advice for others who are interested in starting a business.

Is it Time to Kill Capital Punishment? – Pittsburgh
AFF-Pittsburgh partnered with Pennsylvanians for Alternatives to the Death Penalty to host an event to discuss criminal justice reform, specifically through the lens of capital punishment. The AF members heard a personal story from two guests, exoneree Joe D’Ambrosio and Rev. Neil Kookoothe. Joe spent 22 years on death row until he was exonerated in 2012, with the help of Rev. Kookoothe. The speakers provided unique personal insight into this sensitive issue and what it means for the future of our country. To learn more about their story, check out this article.

AF Around the Country - Central and Midwest Chapters 1Career Pathing in the Gig Economy – Detroit
Trying to keep up with the pace of today’s constantly changing marketplace in the midst of thinking about career moves can be difficult. This is why AF-Detroit featured career coach, entrepreneur, and speaker, Lisa Lewis of So Much More Coaching, to discuss the latest trends in the workplace, how to set yourself up for future success, and ways to create negotiation leverage for your next job. Learn more about Lisa’s story and work at!


Upcoming Events

Holiday Happy Hour – Grand Rapids, December 12
If you reside in northern Michigan, come celebrate the holiday season with AF-Grand Rapids at the Grand River Cigar Lounge for their Whiskey and Cigar Holiday Happy Hour! This 2018 capstone event ends a jam-packed year of events and is an opportunity to relax with a complimentary cigar and drink.

AF Around the Country - Central and Midwest Chapters 2Young Professionals Networking Night and Food Drive – Nashville, December 12
Once again, America’s Future and the Beacon Center of Tennessee’s Young Professionals Society collaborated to host their last event of the year. The evening will feature special guest, Ron Shultis, policy coordinator at the Beacon Center of Tennessee, who will discuss the 2019 legislative session and the policy implications of the recent elections. Come celebrate free markets with free drinks, and bring two nonperishable food items to donate to the Nashville Rescue Mission.


Happy Holidays Happy Hour – Jackson, December 14
Join AF-Jackson for a cup of holiday cheer as they toast to a great AF year. This is their final event of 2018. They will kick off the holiday season and celebrate an amazing year of camaraderie and policy discussions. Don’t forget to wear an ugly Christmas sweater!

Aquaman VIP Screening – Midland, December 22
AFF-Midland took a unique direction for their end of year celebration with a private VIP showing of Aquaman. Join the fun and enjoy free popcorn at the theater next Saturday to close out a great year for AF-Midland!

We would love for you join AF’s holiday events this season! If you, or are someone you know, may be interested in attending these or other upcoming events, check out AFF’s Facebook page! For questions, or to learn more about starting an AF chapter in your city, reach out to Leah Whetstone at [email protected].