Sparrow Caregiver wins Meijer Art Contest

Published: March 14, 2023

LANSING, MI – A Sparrow caregiver who wanted to show her daughters that “women can do cool things” is one of three Midwesterners to have their art featured on a special collection of products at Meijer in celebration of Women’s History Month.

Misty Gunter Russian, who works in Sparrow’s Finance Department, said she finds it “surreal” that her artwork is now depicted on everything from makeup bags to sticky notes and is available throughout Meijer supercenters across the Midwest. The products went on sale on March 1 and are available through April 1. Russian, of Eaton Rapids, said some store managers have told her they’ve had to restock her items.

Russian’s distinctive artwork depicts a silhouette of diverse female images against a nature backdrop.

Misty Gunter Russian Winning Painting

Russian’s work of art depicts a diverse set of women in a nature setting.

Misty Gunter Russian in Meijer Store

Sparrow caregiver Misty Gunter Russian stands amidst a display of items at Meijer depicting the work of art that won a contest throughout all Meijer stores.

“I was really trying to highlight that diversity is beautiful in everything,” Russian said.

It was selected from hundreds of entries after Meijer put out a call for culturally inspired art in late 2021 as part of its ongoing efforts to support underrepresented communities. The winning pieces were selected by Meijer merchants based on team member votes. Meijer is donating 5 percent of sales to the American Heart Association’s Life is Why campaign in the artists’ states.

Russian said she began painting years ago as a stress release and started again after her daughters (aged 4 and 8) were born. Her mother-in-law suggested she enter the Meijer contest, and now she says her family “is just as proud as can be.”

Encouraged by her Meijer recognition, Russian has started her own art company that includes creating outdoor murals, including one for the Hamlin Township Fire Department. She said she’s especially glad to serve as a creative example to her daughters.

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Sparrow is Mid-Michigan’s premier health care organization that includes hospitals in Lansing, Charlotte, St. Johns, Ionia and Carson City as well as Physicians Health Plan, Sparrow Care Network, Sparrow Medical Group, the Michigan Athletic Club, and AL!VE. Sparrow is affiliated with Michigan Medicine through the Sparrow Children’s Center and with Michigan State University’s three human health colleges. Through these partnerships and the dedication of our 10,000 Caregivers, Sparrow pursues a vision to be nationally recognized as a leader in quality and Patient experience. For more information, visit