More than 700 community development leaders from every corner of the state converged on the Hynes Convention Center in Boston on Saturday, October 20 for MACDC’s 2018 Convention. It was a day of celebration, learning, networking, action and inspiration. This was the largest MACDC Convention so far, with hundreds of community residents, CDC board members, staff members, funders, partners, and allies in attendance. Thanks to Bank of America and our generous sponsors, the event was free to our members and to the public.
The day was filled with many highlights, including:
- Gubernatorial Forum: Both Republican Gubernatorial candidate, Charlie Baker, and Democratic Gubernatorial candidate, Jay Gonzalez, participated in our Candidate Forum, fielding questions about affordable housing, the racial homeownership gap, small business development, social determinants of health, the Community Investment Tax Credit and more. Jay Gonzalez promised to double the state’s housing capital budget, with $50 million earmarked for affordable homeownership and said he would fight to increase the state match for the Community Preservation Act. Charlie Baker affirmed his strong support for the Community Investment Tax Credit and said he would sign legislation to increase the state CPA match. Watch the Forum in its entirety on our website.
- Book Presentation: We gave both candidates a copy of the book, The Color of Law, as an appreciation for their participation and to help them learn more about the history of housing discrimination in our country, and its legacy today. If you have not read the book, you should. You can also start with this book review written by Joe Kriesberg. To see how the candidates reacted, watch the video.
- Awards: Spencer Buchholtz from Lawrence Community Works received the Ricanne Hadrian Award for his outstanding organizing work in Lawrence, and three CDCs were honored with the first CITC Community Impact award – NewVue Communities, Revitalize CDC, and Asian CDC. Those CDCs produced wonderful videos that were shown at the convention and can now be viewed on our website.
- Workshops: The convention include eight workshops on key topics, including:
- How to Tell Your Story of Change
- Assessing YOUR Community's Housing Need and Strategies
- Cracking the Code: Building Support for Affordable Housing in Suburban and Rural Areas
- Leveraging Art for Community & Economic Growth
- Healthy Food Focused Economic Development
- From Awake to Woke - Starting Race Talk
- Addressing Fundraising Anxiety: How Board Members and Residents Can Raise Funds
- We Are the Now and the Future. Youth Empowerment!
We also were inspired by four wonderful community leaders who shared their stories about why they have become active with their CDC and by the “CDC Roll Call,” where every CDC in attendance shared an example of the great work they are planning for 2019.
Of course, perhaps, the best part of the day was the opportunity to be together, to network and talk with colleagues, and to feel the energy of this dynamic movement. We are truly more powerful when we are united and the 2018 MACDC Convention proved that yet again.