Richmond, Virginia

The 32nd in our continuing series of Community Wealth Cities is Richmond, Virginia. Richmond has a complex history; once the capital of the Confederacy, it was also the first city to host a bank chartered by African- Americans. Its unique legacy as a site of both racial tension and progress creates interesting challenges and opportunities for community wealth building. Last fall, Richmond gained national attention for Mayor Dwight Jones’ anti-poverty plan, which calls for broad expansion of community wealth building and social enterprise activity.
*NEW* HCDNNJ, Stronger Together: The $12 Billion Impact of Community Development Corporations in New Jersey, The Housing and Community Development Network of New Jersey, December 2014, 1-8.
*NEW* Jennifer Brooks, Kasey Wiedrich, Lebaron Sims, Jr. and Solana Rice, Excluded from the Financial Mainstream: How the Economic Recovery is Bypassing Millions of Americans, Findings from the 2015 Assets & Opportunity Scorecard, Washington, D.C: CFED, January 2015, 1-16.
*NEW* Skylar Olsen et al., "A House Divided: How Race Colors the Path to Homeownership," Seattle, WA: Zillow, Inc., January 15, 2015, 1-37.
*NEW* Ira Harkavy, Nancy Cantor and Myra Burnett, "Realizing STEM Equity and Diversity through Higher Education-Community Engagement," University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA: Netter Center for Community Partnerships Supported White Paper, January 2015, 1-52.

Pogues Run Grocer

Opened in 2010, Pogues Run Grocer is full-service, natural products, member-owned store featuring affordable, fresh, healthy foods and locally produced goods.  The co-op strives to be environmentally and socially conscious by providing access to affordable healthy foods, operating under cooperative principles, supporting the local economy and food network, and minimizing its ecological footprint.  The 800-member organization is committed to education, and offers a range of discounted and free classes focused on topics such as cooking, gardening, and nutrition. Read more about Pogues Run Grocer...

Indiana Electric Cooperatives

Established in 1935, the Indianapolis-based Indiana Electric Cooperatives (IEC) was the first electric cooperative service organization created in the U.S.  Today, the enterprise supports 39 member electric cooperatives located across Indiana.  Its services aim to provide electric cooperatives the tools and resources they need to operate safely, efficiently and legally, and include job and safety training, advocacy and government relations, regulatory compliance support, and professional development training.  IEC also runs numerous programs for students to learn more about energy and the Read more about Indiana Electric Cooperatives...

Indiana Cooperative Development Center

Based in Indianapolis, the Indiana Cooperative Development Center (ICDC) works to promote cooperatives as a vibrant model to address the economic and social needs of Indiana’s communities.  To do so, ICDC educates the public about the co-op model, identifies and shares information about best practices for cooperative organizations, and brings cooperatives together to network, collaborate, and participate in educational and training opportunities.  ICDC also provides free services, including strategic planning; market analysis; business plan development; board, management and staff training Read more about Indiana Cooperative Development Center...

MacFarland Foods

Founded in Indianapolis in 1948 selling just chicken, eggs and butter, MacFarland Foods has expanded into a full-line distributor selling over 5,000 products.  In 2009, the company became 100 percent employee-owned, making it Indiana's largest 100 percent employee-owned food distributor.  Its Indianapolis facility has over 195 employee-owners who serve cities across Indiana, Ohio, and Kentucky. Read more about MacFarland Foods...

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Featured publication

  • A New Anchor Mission for a New Century: Community foundations deploying all resources to build community wealth

    October 30th, 2014 -- john
    Marjorie Kelly and Violeta Duncan

    It was in 2005 that the highly regarded Monitor Institute report declared that the field of community foundations was “On the Brink of New Promise,” and in the decade since, there have been countless working groups and initiatives to introduce innovative approaches to the field. At the same time, largely beneath the radar, a small but growing group has begun pursuing the innovative path we explore here. Mostly in small steps—but sometimes in larger ways—they are adopting elements of what could emerge as a new anchor mission to deploy all resources to build community wealth.

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What is Community Wealth?

How do you build community wealth? Here's some of the basic principles of a successful approach:

Community Wealth Cities

Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Located on the southwestern shore of Lake Michigan, Milwaukee was incorporated in 1846. German immigrants, who came to Wisconsin in search of inexpensive farmland, fueled the city’s early growth. Over the following decades, Milwaukee attracted large groups of other immigrants, including Poles, Lithuanians, Italian, Irish, French, Russian, Bohemian, and Swedish. By 1910, Milwaukee ranked first in the nation, alongside New York City, for having the largest percentage of foreign-born residents. Read more about Milwaukee, Wisconsin...

Community Wealth Interviews

Ed Whitfield

Originally from Little Rock, Arkansas, Ed’s political activism started with attending Little Rock Central High School and beginning to do anti-war work as a teenager. Ed has lived in Greensboro, North Carolina since 1970. In 2007, with Marnie Thompson, he helped co-found the Fund for Democratic Communities (F4DC), a private foundation that aims to promote economic democracy and cooperative economics in the U.S. South. F4DC has pledged to spend down its endowment by 2020. Among its leading efforts are launching the Southern Grassroots Economies Project and supporting the development of the Renaissance Community Co-op in a food desert neighborhood in Greensboro. Ed also participates on numerous boards, including the New Economy Coalition and the Highlander Research and Education Center.

Spotlight

Featured from the toolbox

  • Community Capital

    In this new guide to community investment, the Business Alliance for Local Living Economies (BALLE) identifies finance options and other investment tools to reinvigorate regional economies, create high-quality jobs, and restore the environment. BALLE offers this guide as a resource to help re-shape financial capital flows to support local self-sufficiency and ingenuity.

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