Emerging Philanthropists Spotlight: Atif Lodhi

When did you first start supporting United Way? Why did you join EP?

This is my first official time supporting United Way, though I’ve known about the organization for years. One of my college roommates sat on the board for United Way for Southeastern Michigan before moving out of state, but I was spurred to action after a conversation with Joe Klecha regarding EP and the effort United Way was making in trying to connect with donors, like myself, who knew they wanted to support United Way, but were not sure how.

What was your first job?

My first job was as a law clerk for Kemp Klein in Troy.

What was your most memorable volunteering experience?

One of my more memorable volunteering experiences deals with doing food and Christmas gift deliveries for families through Focus:HOPE. It gave me my first sense of the poverty issue in metro Detroit.

What is your favorite pastime / hobby?

Reading anything and everything historical in nature (I have an affinity for going through the Detroit Free Press archives and looking up news articles on different topics), watching sports (especially Michigan athletics and the Detroit Tigers), exercising and spending time with my family.

Who inspires you?

Good question. I’m inspired by many different people — people who give their time and talents to better our community and are committed to Detroit and southeastern Michigan.

What book have you read more than once? Who is your favorite author?

Another tough question – I’ve read “Bo’s Lasting Lessons” by John U. Bacon several times (if you can’t tell by now, I am a Michigan grad!) as there are lessons to be learned about hard work, perseverance, teamwork and putting aside personal motivations for the greater good.

What is your favorite quote or mantra you live by?

I have several: “It’s chaos, be kind”, “The team, the team, the team”, and “It is what it is.”

What are you looking forward to most in the next few months?

I look forward to getting involved with EP, meeting and connecting with other EP members, and playing a small role in making someone else’s life better.