"City leaders have seen divisions sprout up, [causing separations] by national and ethnic identities. [This program is about] changing attitudes so that a majority of residents feel they have a stake in their community as a whole."
“We are not just building projects but we need to include people in the development of ideas.” ~ Jesse Clark
“Some key elements of this conference struck me in the gut,” said Clark, executive director of the Historic District Development Corporation. “We are not just building projects but we need to include people in the development of ideas.”
The Empowerment Congress Leadership Institute was established to help communities around the country create effective ways of engaging and including residents in civic activities.
Throughout the week, the participants joined in panel discussions and presentations as well as a grand tour of Los Angeles, to gin up ideas for improving their own communities.
Clark was joined by Dagmar Epsten, Harold Barnette and several others from Atlanta.
“We have learned that having a powerful political advocate is very helpful indeed,” said Barnette. “We also learned that communities need to get out in front of changes and make their neighborhood look like how they want it.”