Few people in the world of community development got their start as early in life as Lahela Williams, a 2019 Rubinger Fellow who serves as the deputy director for Hawaiian Community Assets. Williams was barely a teen when she joined the board of her homestead association, a group that promoted safety, education and other quality-of-life issues for the Native community where she grew up on the island of O’ahu. That first job helped lay the foundation of a career dedicated to nurturing Hawaiian community leadership, as well as financial and personal empowerment for her fellow islanders.
When natural disasters strike—as they increasingly have—there are profound differences between response and recovery in rural areas and urban ones. On the eve of the annual Rural LISC seminar (this year in Monticello, New York, June 4-7), vice president and Rural LISC director Suzanne Anarde published an article in Shelterforce about helping community-based organizations better respond when disaster hits, boost rural resilience, and support communities in preparing before disasters befall them.
Check out our top three reads of the week. They cover the challenges and opportunities facing American communities right now. This week, we’re reading an excerpt from Alexander Garvin's latest book, contemplating what constitutes a “good job” and learning about health equity in rural America.
From the unprecedented $1.5 billion we invested last year in people and communities across the country, to our burgeoning collaborations with sectors ranging from tech and healthcare to sports and local government, the LISC 2018 Annual Report is chock full of good news, good numbers, and good ideas. These resources and strategies propel us on our journey to shape a brighter future for all our nation's residents. And that, in a nutshell, is the heart of LISC's mission. Read on!Read Our Report
In an op-ed for the Daily Yonder, Suzanne Anarde, VP of Rural LISC, and Matt Dunne of the Center on Rural Innovation take aim at pervasive media portrayals of a rural America in hopeless decline (witness a recent New York Times column by Paul Krugman). The challenges are real, they acknowledge, but far from intractable. We must take cues from small towns building innovative local economies, and invest strategically to spark sustainable development and growth in the heartland—for the good of the entire country.