The mission of Next Gen Community Connection is to cultivate and strengthen connections supporting a vibrant group of ambassadors engaged in making a positive, lasting impact on the Macon County community.

It’s easy to mind your own business – it takes a little more effort to mind the community. Find out what you have in common with others. Find your connection to our community. Next Gen – where we all come together.

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Member Spotlight: Kiersten
Member Spotlight Valerie

The Next Gen Community Connection group is a volunteer-led ambassador group heavily emphasizing networking and the opportunity to be in good company, connect and inspire young professionals. This is a group for young professionals who want to elevate their professional image, connect with peers and give back to their community.

Some components the Next Gen Community Connection group is focused on are:


To combat a perception there is “nothing to do in Macon County,” a monthly social group activity will be offered. These gatherings provide a medium for young professionals to connect. They will also highlight gathering places within Macon County.


A quarterly intimate, unscripted event will be held allowing access to influential community leaders. This is a question and answer time, and an opportunity to make professional connections. Free event with food provided.


These workshops will be offered by Next Gen Community Connection young professionals who want to host the group at their place of work as a means to expose more professionals to what is great in Macon County and go behind the scenes at locations.

Coming Soon: OUT & ABOUT

This area focuses on volunteering in Macon County – finding the cause a Next Gen member is passionate about. Area volunteer opportunities will continually be highlighted and shared with the group. This is not about a sense of obligation, it’s just a sense of it’s natural and “we should.”

Along with sharing volunteer opportunities, such as those housed on the Get Connected portal, opportunities will also be coordinated for the group to show up in masses to volunteer. The steering committee will select those opportunities.


For Next Gen Community Connection members looking to pool their donations and collectively award impactful grants, the Giving Circle is a perfect fit. All Next Gen members are invited to contribute to the Giving Circle. A minimum annual gift of $125 is required to be a voting member ($200/couple). Monthly billing is available and matching corporate gifts may be utilized. A quarterly community wish list will be shared at all Next Gen events to foster a greater sense of awareness.  The young professional giving circle has been awarding a $5,000 annual grant. The 2018 recipient was Macon County CASA. The grant process includes site visits, grant reviews and a “Shark Tank” style funding pitch party.


Karalee Misner of the Decatur Park District, Jey Owens of DPS61 and  Natalie Beck from the Community Foundation joined Byers & Co to about about a new initiative called NextGen.

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Next Gen is backed by: