Boston is widely known across the country for having one of the strongest CDC networks in the United States. One reason for our success has been the close partnership between the CDCs and City Hall during the tenure of Mayor Thomas Menino and his predecessor, Mayor Ray Flynn. Both Mayors have worked with CDCs as partners and the results speak for themselves.
A few weeks ago, I wrote a review of a new book by the Brookings Institute called Confronting Suburban Poverty that highlights the growing number of poor people living in suburbs and small cities across America.
What do Lynn, Brockton, Lincoln, Westwood, Watertown and Revere have in common? According to a new report by the Brookings Institute “Confronting Suburban Poverty in America,” they are all suburbs of Boston, despite their vast differences. Does this seem strange to you? It does to me.
What does an organization supporting fisherman have in common with one that’s cleaning up a brownfields site along the Housatonic River in Great Barrington? What does a foreclosure prevention counseling program in Roxbury have in common with a small business microloan fund in the Quaboag Valley? The answer is these are all programs run by CDCs. If CDCs are this different and this varied in the services they provide and the communities they serve, is there a common theme or thread that binds them all together? Are all the CDCs operating from a same “theory
My teenage sons enjoy making fun of me for spending three years in law school and then getting a job that does not involve being a lawyer. I try to explain that you learn a lot in law school that is useful for other professions (how to write, think, and argue, for example), but they remain skeptical.
Community developers, like others fighting to improve the lives of low and moderate income people, are rightly frustrated at the persistently high rates of poverty in our country. A new book called “Investing in What Works for America’s Communities,” frames the issue in the following manner: “It may seem obvious, but the most important reason why community development needs to evolve is that it is not solving the problem it was set up to fix-namely, reducing the number of people living in poverty.
A few weeks ago, Boston Globe columnist, Joan Venochi, wrote an op-ed entitled “The Props for Patrick’s Wish List” in which she urged the Governor to “respect the public’s intelligence and stop using fellow citizens as props in a tired political play.”
Perhaps the hardest part of directing MACDC is balancing the valid, yet competing, interests of our diverse membership. This challenge came to the forefront at a recent MACDC Member Policy Summit in Framingham.
Our former board chair, Charles Rucks, has a wonderful expression that the “biggest room in the house is the room for improvement.” In that spirit, I have been thinking about some of things that I want to improve on in 2013. While I’m sure my family could think of many things I could do better at home (cook more, nag less), I’m focusing this post on some areas for professional improvement. So here are some key challenges that I will be working on this year: