Only by reckoning with the past are we able to create a society that honors the dignity and wellbeing of all Americans. In recognition of Women’s History Month, we shine a spotlight on three LISC sites where our work is led by women and supports women in the communities we serve—and aims to build a future where everyone can thrive and prosper.
Candice Streett, executive director of LISC Virginia, has dedicated most of her working life to community development in Virginia. As she prepares to “downshift” from the position, she is being honored as a 2019 Richmond History Maker by the historic Valentine Museum, for her efforts on behalf of the city’s communities and her innovative economic development initiatives. In an interview with The Community Foundation, she reflects on the lessons from her journey. The most important one? “I’ve learned that we need to always listen first to those who have the most at stake—neighborhood residents.”
In recognition of Black History Month, LISC Phoenix program officer Dominic Braham reflects on the African-American history of his city, and how the influence of a historic “dividing line” between downtown and the redlined neighborhoods of South Phoenix still shapes its communities. Developing local leadership of color, connecting people with the region’s prosperity, and committing to racial equity as the city develops, he explains, are keys to authentic civic engagement and a more inclusive Phoenix. Photo courtesy of InSite Consultants.
The winners of this year’s Michael Rubinger Community Fellowship award have long been focused on ways to expand economic opportunity and build safer, stronger communities. Through the fellowship program, they now have the chance to focus on transformative efforts they might not otherwise have the time or resources to pursue. “All of us in community development stand on the shoulders of local leaders,” said Michael Rubinger, the former LISC CEO for whom the program is named. “When we nurture them, we expand the nation’s capacity to create jobs, build housing, improve health and fuel cohesive communities.”
Our ten inaugural Rubinger Fellows have come to the end of their fellowship year, and our hats are off to them! In addition to the manuscripts, playbooks, poems, sermons and other creations the fellows produced to cap the year, they shared some reflections on their highlights and lessons learned as Rubinger Fellows. Watch the videos to hear what they had to say.