Promoting change in tough times is no small feat, but for Blake Lynch ’11, it’s a way of life. As Liaison and bridge builder for the Harrisburg (PA) Police Department since 2018, Lynch has the opportunity to do good, effect change, and help people every day. His efforts have garnered several accolades. In fact, Central Penn Business Journal named Lynch 2019 “40 under 40” list for his leadership and community service. He also earned the Harrisburg Regional Chamber & CREDC’s Emerging Business Leader Catalyst Award, which honors leaders who promote change in the Harrisburg region. Recently, the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank bestowed Lynch with its 2020 Hunger Hero Award for his efforts in organizing hundreds of community volunteers, bus drivers and police officers who lifted and distributed more than 13,000 boxes and almost 650,000 pounds of good to service local families and children during the pandemic.
Accolades aside, Lynch most enjoys the satisfaction of serving the community through the variety of his job, which entails advising the Bureau command staff of citizen and community concerns. He also acts as a Police Bureau representative in the field to organize citizens against crime and present a positive message around police work to encourage citizen-police partnership. Beyond the workplace, Lynch also serves on the Board of Directors for WITF, Harrisburg’s local public television and radio station.
Looking back on his Messiah years, Lynch notes that classes relating to public speaking, public relations, crisis communication and economics all help him in his current position. “In the real world, most employers require experience, so in order to have experience most times you have to build up to a place where you can provide enough insight and value to reach that level,” Lynch says. He credits President Kim Phipps, Dr. Nance McCown, Track & Field and Cross-country coach Dale Fogelsanger, and former Associate Dean of Diversity Affairs Dr. Lawrence Burnley with helping him the most through his college career.
Lynch advises current Messiah students, “I would say to come to Messiah with an open mind, and heart to learn as well as apply what you learn to doing good and helping others. Take the things you learn and work to apply them towards a purpose greater than yourself.”
-Audrey Kuhns ‘21