As we wrap up the year 2017, we want to acknowledge a very special anniversary and an extremely important part of our onthetown family – the one and only Michael G. Thodoroff, known affectionately to us as Mike. For 30 years, Mike has been an instrumental part of our team, outlasting all others and wearing many different hats along the way. To honor his service, which has been an integral part of why we’ve been the flagship publication for the Flint area for decades – we are presenting him with an award, as well as our kudos and gratitude in print.
onthetown had already been an established publication for 13 years when Mike came on board. Founded by longtime Flint resident Harry C. McVey, the magazine’s mission was to provide the people of Flint with positive, vibrant and local news and information. At the beginning of the auto industry’s decline, the publication was just what we needed. And it has remained strong and true to its original mission all these years. A large part of the reason why is that Mike has been the consistent backbone of the magazine for so long.
Mike met Harry when they both worked for General Motors. Once Mike had retired, he wanted to do something focused on helping the community thrive. His love of and flair for wordsmithery served him well for this goal, and he began writing for onthetown in 1987. He has always been dedicated to preserving Harry’s legacy of presenting the most upbeat and positive goings-on in the Flint area.
onthetown has gone through many changes since Mike came on board, and so has his role. He has served not only as a dedicated, passionate writer but also as senior editor and managing editor at various times, including currently. He’s also thrown himself into endeavors like writing and editing special publications dedicated to local institutions, such as Camp Copneconic and Powers Catholic High School.
Combining editing and writing roles requires equal abilities to focus on details and to envision a piece – skills that are rare to find in tandem. Mike is one of those unique people who can delve into the solitary process that is writing and switch quickly into editing mode when necessary. But it’s the third item in this juggling act that is most difficult, and that is the management aspect of making decisions regarding content and communicating with the multitude of people involved in the creation of a magazine. It’s a delicate balancing act!
A dynamically changing group has always been at the helm of the publication in the editorial, design and sales departments. There have been, throughout the years, many talented local writers and photographers who have contributed excellent content. There are public relations folks with whom Mike has forged fruitful alliances and business owners he has supported. Community organizations, too, have graced our pages many times. We have been fortunate to have Mike on board since he is a person with the gift of gab and is able to connect with a diverse group of people.
It is with all this in mind that we present him this year with our award for outstanding commitment, integrity and quality. onthetown has been blessed to have Mike, and we would not be what we are today without him!