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Community Advocacy Organization

Use your Platform and your Voice will Come

By Matt Thornton

All-Star Mechanical Team Courtesy All-Star Mechanical Website

“Don’t take it personally, it's just business.”

“Keep your personal ideas and business separate.”

As employees, entrepreneurs, and businesspeople, we disillusion ourselves with this idea. If you have ever started a business, you know that it’s one of the most personal things you ever will do in your entire life. It’s like your child. Like your children, they are constantly on your mind. Wondering if you’re missing a follow-up, a meeting, or a tax write-off.

Taking ownership of a job can hit you in the feels too. My wife and I were both recently laid off from jobs at a mortgage company because of the changes in the financial market. Neither of us can control what the Fed does with the interest rates. We can’t manipulate real estate to make houses more affordable. Still doesn’t change the feeling of a fresh kick in the crotch while dealing with the rest of life.

Larry Kirchhoff has been taking his business personally since he found the HVAC industry. and started 'All-Star Mechanical' in 2007. Over time, he has used his business platform to voice his outrage at our country’s law enforcement and the continued mistreatment of BIPOC people and communities.

“If I kept leaving gas leaks at people’s houses, people would start complaining. If then I turned around and said 'you’re just saying that to make me look bad', that would be completely tone-deaf. The police fail to acknowledge their part in the perception.”

This wasn’t an overnight decision for Kirchhoff and his family. There was worry that using All-Star Mechanical’s growing business platform to voice his frustration in the system would be detrimental.

Larry’s City Pulse Editorial released 6–15–22 Courtesy of Larry Kirchhoff

Larry's anger built over time, starting with Rodney King and the video of the LAPD mercilessly beating him. Then, the hero worship of George Zimmerman following the murder of Travon Martin. “

"It wasn't right, "he says. "The people and media’s reaction, defending Zimmerman and stereotyping Martin. I kept putting my son in that position. I can’t imagine feeling 'less than' ” The repetition of sentiment and justifications with the Mike Brown case was it for Larry. Taking to the internet to debate, he could see that it wasn’t enough. This was also around the time Colin Kaepernick took a knee.

“Colin (Kaepernick) is one of my heroes. He knew that he would lose money and be blackballed for speaking his mind and using his platform to do it.” During the depths of the pandemic, Larry and All-Star doubled down on its support and didn’t take payments from clients on service calls. He asked for people to donate to organizations like One Love Global and Black Lives Matter.

Then one day, Larry had to set up an ad for Lansing’s City Pulse for his monthly ad. “The ad is how I felt in the 30 seconds when I wrote it. I have that feeling every day, just didn’t feel just like business that day.” Someone from MSNBC reached out to him for more information on his ad to later cancel the conversation. “It got to be a busy news day. I think they had just released Steve Bannon’s testimony for January 6th.”

Even without national news outlets, we continue to see Larry doing right in the community and speaking up when needed while keeping the Greater Lansing area temperature just right.

All-Star Mechanical ad released July 2022 Courtesy of All-Star Mechanical

To learn more about Larry’s causes and business All-Star Mechanical, please visit or


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