Our Stories

10.31.2019 -

From Recidivism to Rebuilding Lives: Q&A With Kelly Orians

Kelly Orians is an attorney, a 2019 Rubinger Fellow and the co-director of the First 72+, a ground-breaking New Orleans re-entry program for people returning from incarceration. Orians spoke with LISC about the state of criminal justice in Louisiana, the challenges and successes her clients experience, and how her organization is helping lift the burden of entrenched bureaucracy and predatory debt that keeps so many people from gaining real freedom after release.

Serving Richmond Students Where the Rubber Meets the Road: Q&A with Damon Jiggetts

In Richmond, Virginia, 86 percent of students don't take part in after-school activities—in many cases because they have no way of getting there. Damon Jiggetts, executive director of the Peter Paul Development Center and a 2019 Rubinger Fellow, has devised a new kind of bus company that could change all that, connecting youth to the kind of enrichment every child deserves.

New Ideas from a New Generation: LISC’s Emerging Leaders Council

There’s a new kind of board at LISC, composed of a diverse crew of younger professionals who are leaders in their fields. Their mission? To bring fresh perspectives, networks and attention to LISC’s work and help us achieve even greater impact in the communities we care about.

The Anatomy of an Inclusive—and Successful—Community Partnership: Q&A with Thomas Wyatt

Thomas Wyatt, a researcher, urban planner and 2019 Rubinger Fellow from Flint, Michigan, discusses what it takes to forge cross-sector partnerships that can achieve authentic community change. A prime example: Flint’s University Avenue Corridor Coalition brought residents and institutions together to reduce a neighborhood’s entrenched blight and crime when nothing else could.

7.22.2019 -

Making a City Yours: The Story of Milwaukee’s ACRE Program

In 2004, Mark Eppli noticed a problem. The Marquette University professor became acutely aware of the critically low rates of people of color working in commercial real estate development in Milwaukee. Not one to walk away from a problem, he set off to find a solution with the help of Milwaukee’s community leaders, politicians and local organizations. What he built became the Associates in Commercial Real Estate, or ACRE, a program that has become a mainstay in the city. LISC’s Tope Folarin shares the story of how ACRE got started, the impact it has had in the city, and the inspiring graduates who help keep it moving forward.