Community Development Society

News and Information

Community Development Data Viz - March 2015

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081012 collaborative public health research kudryashka fotolia1

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Gender infograph 2ndED EN WEB

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105 income on food

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President's Update - Plow through for community development

By Dave Lamie

It's hard to believe that the middle of February has already passed us by. A recent notice of a dear friend learning that she has cancer and a colleague who suddenly lost her mother gives me pause. Many of you have experienced similar events either directly yourselves or in relation to family, friends, or colleagues. The more mature we come, the more often these reminders of life's fleetingness and human frailty occur. It as at these times that we may also encounter the power of community to help buoy us up to face the adversities of life.

One of my most memorable college teachers used to deliver a lecture entitled "the plow" to help us reflect on how we would respond to life's challenges. As the mule pulls the plow, it slices through the soil with forward momentum, leaving a clean, weed-free furrow behind. This represents our life when we feel we are making progress and all is going well. But, fields often have rocks laying hidden beneath the surface, and sometimes they are big and firmly planted. Some plows are built on a rigid frame, and when they hit such a rock, they often break, requiring substantial repair. Sometimes they are so broken they simply must be returned to the smelter. Technological advances produced a plow that would spring backward when it encountered the rock. The plow operator would need to stop and reset the heavy spring-loaded mechanism before proceeding. Some later tractor-driven models were similar, but they only needed the operator to stop and reverse the tractor in order to reset the blade. Later versions included an auto-reset feature that would trip the blade back when it hit the rock, but it would automatically reset; no stopping or reversing required.

The question left with us at the end of this talk was "what kind of plow are you"?  How will you respond to the challenges that life brings you. We know that it is part of the human condition that we will face many challenges in our lives. We surely have some choice over how we will respond to these challenges and that we can likely build resiliency and capacity as individuals to help. But, what roles can the community play to help strengthen and build the networks of support necessary for individuals to be more resilient? What can we do collectively that individuals cannot do for themselves? Who are those in our communities that are not benefitting from what the community can provide them? Can a robust community that truly cares for and provides for all individuals expect reciprocity from those individuals who benefit? Can we, as community developers, truly help to create these kinds of communities or is this just too daunting a task?

As we all make preparations to gather at our annual conference in July in Lexington, Kentucky, I challenge you to consider how important it is that we, as community development practitioners, find our own community of interest to help support us in the daunting challenge of, each in our own way, helping to create communities that make a strong and lasting impact on the lives of individuals. Never has it been more important for all of us to have a strong network of friends and colleagues who are bound by a common interest in making this world a better place through making stronger, more resilient communities. We hope to see you there!

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Member Benefits - Job Forum

By Cindy Banyai

Did you know there is a Jobs Forum on the new Community Development Society website? It's one of the great new members-only features we've added. The forum is a way for hard working CD job seekers to better connect with opportunities that are aligned with their skill set. Here's how to access it:

  1. Login to the CDS website
  2. Scroll and and click "Forum" in the bulleted list under the login box
  3. Click the right index tag (although many of the most recently posted jobs will be right there in front of you on the landing page!!).
  4. Check out all the great jobs in Community Development

Hope that helps! Good luck!

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Community Development Data Viz - January 2015

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website version ABCs of ABCD 

 

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Editor's Pick 2014: Best of Charts of Note - USDA

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President's Update - Evolution of CDS

By Dave Lamie

I hope that the New Year finds you healthy, energized, and excited about what life is bringing you. As we witness with horror the brutality that our species is capable of inflicting upon one another, it is easy to become confused and bewildered.  Our old ways of thinking about things may not work as well as they did in our youth.  We turn to the sages of our history for insight and understanding, yet they do not seem to speak to us as they did before. Yet, we fear that if we abandon wholesale our beliefs we might jettison something essential, even sacred. So, we spend time sorting through it all, carefully putting those things that we still value in their place, discarding that which does not seem to work for us.  
As community development professionals we should consider a similar sorting process. We should use our evaluation results to help us craft better programs and interventions.  We should take stock of the way we currently do things and consider if there are not better, more effective, or more efficient ways of doing things.  And, we should probably go about examining our underlying value statements to deliberate on just how important they are to us and whether or not they should be modified to better reflect current realities.  This process might even lead us to new paradigms and patterns of thinking about things that simply work better.  
It is in this spirit that I propose that we undertake a process of revisiting, reviewing, and possibly revising our most sacred statements: The CDS Principles of Good Practice.  Over the next few months I hope to engage a selection of CDS members to help us in this review process. I want to be sure we include some of our newest members as well as some long-standing ones.  We need to have confidence that these statements speak as clearly to CD professionals today as they did when they were first adopted.  
At the end of the day, we might wind up with exactly the same thing we started with…and that is perfectly acceptable. Or, some completely new, completely relevant statements might be developed. Don't worry, we won't officially change anything without properly involving the CDS membership. Your involvement in the evolution of the Society is of vital importance.
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Community Development Data Viz- November 2014

ALR Infographic Communities June2012

 

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INFOGRAPHIC-Chicago-Community-Trust-Birkdesign

 

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What-Makes-a-Great-Community-Leader-Infographic-550x575

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Community Development Data Viz- October 2014

family farms dominate

Family farms dominate U.S. agriculture

 

Investing In What Works Infographic

Infographic: Investing in People AND Places

Sage Nonprofit Social Enterprise Infographic

Nonprofits for Social Enterprise 

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Millenium Development Goal Infographic

snap nutrition

SNAP participants more likely to use nutrition information in fast-food places

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Infographics to Promote Your SNAP-Ed Program

 

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Community Development Data Viz- September 2014

Median farm household income forecast to decline slightly in 2014

median farm income down

Children participate in community development

 

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Community of Practice Development Model

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Asset Based Community Development

 

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One in five U.S. households with children were food-insecure at some time in 2013

 

1 in 5 child food insecurity

School foods are the richest source of dairy products in children’s diets

 

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Consumers with dark green vegetables at home more likely to use nutrition information when eating out

green veggies

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President's Update - CDS working for you now and for the future

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By Dave Lamie
 
It's been nearly two months now since many of us had the chance to rendezvous in Dubuque for our annual conference.  Thanks to all the hard work of excellent local hosts, program committees, presenters, speakers, reviewers, and the support of our sponsors, we were able to put on a great conference. Giselle Hamm, our current Vice President of Programs, is now deep into working with another great local host committee to help set the stage for the 2015 conference in Lexington, Kentucky. Chris Marko, the current Vice President of Operations, is also beginning to work with local hosts from Minnesota, who will organize the 2016 conference. And, there are multiple other conference location proposals being developed for consideration at the CDS Fall Board meeting to be held in early November.  Measured in financial terms, no one is getting rich from all of the time and energy put forward to create these wonderful opportunities for CDS members to share their knowledge and enthusiasm for what CDS represents in the world --- but, we are all enriched through participation in this effort, no matter our role.
 
Though our annual conference is, perhaps, the most visible feature of our organization, there are multiple other ways that our organization helps to foster enlightened community development around the world.  The Journal serves as a means for our members to engage in community development scholarship and for this scholarship to inform our practice.  John Green, who serves as our current editor, will be turning over the reigns to a new editor later this year.  We are in the process of finding just the right person(s) to serve in this important capacity.  Our CD Practice publication is a great companion to the Journal, allowing practitioners to share their experiences and to hone their skills as they help to make the world a better place.  The Vanguard, that you are now reading, helps to keep us all informed of what the organization and our members are doing.  And, our website serves as a portal where all of this information can be easily accessed, a place where dialogue on community development issues can be fostered, and a vehicle to deliver this content globally --- into virtually every nook and cranny the Internet occupies.   All of these tools and more are at our disposal and we invite our members to consider not only being consumers of what they provide, but to take a more active role by becoming co-creators.  
 
And, there are multiple committees and task forces working on many different issues, all with the focus of making CDS an even better organization for future generations.  As we go into the Autumn months there will be plenty of opportunities for you to consider how you want to be involved in making CDS be the very best professional organization dedicated to the mission of community development.   Many hands make light work and when a good team of folks is working well together, it doesn't really seem like work.  It seems like the right thing to do.  
 
Here's to a great beginning to a new season!
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Community Development Headlines - CDS UpFront June 2014

Compiled by Timothy Collins, Assistant Director, Illinois Institute for Rural Affairs at Western Illinois University

5 Innovative Tech Solutions for Civic Disengagement

You Can't Just Throw Money at Community Development

Beginning Farmers and Ranchers and the Agricultural Act of 2014

Consumers Devote a Higher Share of Food Spending to Fruits and Vegetables in Supermarkets Than In Supercenters

Speak Your Piece: At the End of the Line

Speak Your Piece: Dry Your Eyes, Revitalize

Do Old Buildings Contribute to Economic Vitality?

"These Empty Buildings – It’s Opportunity"

How Green is My Neighborhood? Let Me Count the Ways

New Urbanism's Impact on Mid-Sized and Smaller Cities

Community Gardens as Harbingers of Gentrification

How the Family Farm Stole My Sense of Self—For the Better

Farmers and Foodies: A Conversation

Let’s Get Creative: Creative-Class Counties

Protesters' Delay Tactics Can Stall Extraction Projects

Will the World’s Emerging Megacities Turn the Corner? For Most of Them, Probably Not

From Jurisdictional to Functional Analysis of Urban Cores & Suburbs

Suburban Poverty Case Study: Cobb County, Georgia

"Black Women’s Blueprint" Helps Low-Income Women Get By—Through Bartering

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Charts of Note - April

Rural Population Decline Continues in 2013

Median Farm Household Income Has Exceeded Median U.S. Household Income in Recent Years

Conservation Funding Shifts toward Working Land Conservation under the Agricultural Act of 2014

Agricultural Act of 2014 Maintains SNAP’s Basic Eligibility Guidelines

2014 Farm Act Increases Spending to Support Organic Agriculture

Composition of Top U.S. Food Retailers Changed between 2008 and 2012

Rural Child Poverty at Highest Level Since Mid-1980s

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Community Development Headlines - CDS UpFront April 2014

Compiled by Timothy Collins, Assistant Director, Illinois Institute for Rural Affairs at Western Illinois University

Get Intersectional! (Or, Why Your Movement Can't Go It Alone)

Poverty and Deep Poverty Increasing in Rural America

Where Inequality Is Worst In The United States

USDA: Recent Population Change

Housing is the Key to Family-Friendly Cities

Speak Your Piece: A Dwelling Place

'Living Innovation Zones' Transform Public Space in San Francisco

These Little Hacks Make Cities More Sustainable And Fun

Focusing on People, Not Sprawl

The Part-Time, Freelance, Collaborative Economy

Direct-Farm Sales May Boost Local Growth

America's New Brainpower Cities

After Death of Radical Mayor, Mississippi's Capital Wrestles With His Economic Vision

Finding Big Success in a Small Town

'Sometimes a Great Notion': Sink or Swim

Video: Can Co-Ops Curb Poverty In New York City?

5 Habits of Companies that Rock at Giving Back

Concentrated Wealth or Democracy, but Not Both

 

  Occasional Paper: Toward an Epistemological Foundation for Social and Solidarity Economy

 

  Occasional Paper: Social and Solidarity Economy: Between Emancipation and Reproduction

 

  Occasional Paper: Understanding Social and Solidarity Economy in Emergent Communities: Lessons from Post–Fast Track Land Reform Farms in Mazowe, Zimbabwe

 

  Social and Solidarity Economy: A New Path to Sustainable Development (Beyond 2015 Brief No. 5)

 

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Emerging Leadership Theories for Community Leadership

 

 

 

 

By: Whitney McIntyre Miller

As a leadership studies scholar, I often get to explore the many ways that people utilize and think about leadership.  My passion for community development often influences that way I think about leadership.  While giving a recent lecture on emerging leadership theories, I began thinking about how they would translate to communities and leaders of community organizations.  Below I share my thoughts on these emerging leadership theories and how they may impact communities and community leaders.

Increasingly, emerging leadership theories focus on collectivism, connectedness, and seeing our world as a living system.  Gone are the days of the solo “hero” leader that sweeps into our communities and community organizations and creates great change and growth.  We realize that our world is complex and interconnected, and our communities are becoming equally as diverse and multifaceted.  Therefore these new emerging leadership theories will help community leaders think about the future of their communities and help to move their whole communities toward this future.

In order for us to really utilize some of this new thinking it is important for us to let go of past ideas of community leadership and instead embrace new ways of thinking and leading as they emerge (Scharmer, 2009).  Scharmer (2009) told us in his work Theory U that we are at the precipice of an age of individual and collective transformational change.  What we need to do is tap into our highest potential and actually learn from for the future- a process he calls emergent learning.  This requires “presencing,” or having presence in a situation and sensing what is coming.  For communities, we must turn our senses to the future of our communities by not just looking at current detriments, but thinking about how to make our communities safe and inclusive for everyone.  What will our communities look like in five, ten years?  How do we solve those problems today?  By paying attention to what is happening and leading for the future, not the past, or even the community of today.

Wheatley (2006) worked to connect organizations to the quantum physics notion of chaos theory in order to understand how we are really connected to, with, and operate like the living systems that surround us.  The truth is that despite wanting to be in control, we live in a time of chaos.  While many of us fear chaos, we should really learn to embrace chaos, because not only is it inevitable, it is also valuable to our communities and organizations.  This value comes from the scientific evidence that there is actually order in chaos.  It is this order that, when allowed to foster, shows us patterns and emerging ideas that would not only be beneficial in reducing our levels of self-imposed stress, but could also allow for our communities and organizations to flow in a free and organic manner. 

Chaos theory in organizations provides several lessons for community leaders.  First, we must learn to be flexible and lead within chaos- we must see the big picture while also keeping our feet on the ground.   Heifetz (1994) referred to this as being both on the balcony and the dance floor.  Another lesson from Heifetz (1994) is also valuable for community leaders looking to lead through chaos.  This is the lesson of the safe holding environment.  Leaders need to provide a space that keeps things calm enough for people to maintain composure, while simultaneously allows for enough chaos to stimulate creativity and emerging thought.  If we can provide this space for our communities, then we can provide place for people to self-organize and thrive.

Western (2008) is another emerging leadership theorist that takes lessons from nature.  Western’s (2008) model of Eco-Leadership is one of distributed leadership.  He saw our collective entry into the post-heroic leadership era and understood that we must think about our environment, as well as our interdependent parts and systems in order to be successful.  Building off of Senge’s (2006) now famous systems thinking work, Western (2008) challenged us to see that any leadership task, including community leadership, should be seen through the lens of holism- we are all made up of the sum of our parts and therefore leadership can emerge from anywhere inside an organization or community.  As our communities are becoming more diverse, global, and complex, it is important for us as community leaders to understand that we need to embrace our whole community, see the interactions of the various pieces of our communities, and understand how we interact with other communities and systems in order to build a strong culture that encourages leadership from throughout the community to meet our growing future needs.

Finally, we look at the impact of Wilber’s (2001) integral model on community leadership.  Wilber (2001) designed a four quadrant model (shaped as a square with two boxes on top and two on the bottom), which includes the notions of thinking on multiple levels and contexts simultaneously.  The purpose of his model is to demonstrate that there are many facets of leadership occurring at the same time, of which we need to be conscious.  The top left quadrant is that of internal reflections of our leadership practices.  The top right quadrant focuses on our leadership interactions with others.  The bottom left quadrant is where we tend to find our communities- the space where we operate leadership within groups.  Finally, the bottom left quadrant is seen as the global environment within which our leadership occurs. 

Wilber (2001) challenged us to develop each quadrant of our leadership in order to be the best leaders possible.  For community leaders, this means that we must develop our own leadership skills through reflection and self-understanding, practice those skills with each individual with whom we interact, build communities that have strong leadership capacities and reflect the best image of community-self, and nestle that leadership work within the broader context of other communities, cities, regions, states, etc.  This, of course, is no easy task, but perhaps a noble challenge for us to consider as community leaders.  What might our communities looked like if we took the time to reflect on our leadership and embrace of leadership work in terms of self, other, community, and environment?

While each of these leadership theories may seem like a long way from the comfort of how we have been leading communities for years, if not generations, if we step back we can see that, at least in the United States, there has been a growing movement away from the hero leader and toward a need for connectivity.  Perhaps we have decided that we do not enjoy bowling alone (Putnam, 2000) after all.  It is in these cases, where we crave a sense of connectedness and collectivism that we may visit some of these emerging leadership theories and think about how they may help us, as leaders, to be more responsive to community needs and vision now and in the future.

References:

Heifetz, R. (1994). Leadership without easy answers. Cambridge: Harvard University Press.

 

Putnam, R. (2000). Bowling alone. New York, NY: Simon and Schuster.

 

Scharmer, O. (2009).  Theory U: Leading from the future as it emerges.  San Francisco, CA: Berrett-Koehler.

 

Senge, P. (2006). The fifth discipline: The art and practice of the learning organization (Revised edition). New York, NY: Double-Day.

 

Western, S. (2008). Leadership: A Critical Text. Los Angeles, CA: Sage.

 

Wilber, K. (2000). A theory of everything: An integral vision for business, politics, science, and spirituality. San Francisco, CA: Shambhala Publishing.

Wheatley, M. (2006). Leadership and the New Science, 2nd ed. San Francisco, CA: Berrett-Koehler.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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President's Update: Looking forward in community development

By Bo Beaulieu

I just want to devote my column this month to share with you some brief highlights. First, the extended deadline date for submission of abstracts for the 2014 CDS annual meeting in Dubuque is quickly approaching. Please take a few minutes to submit your innovative ideas for presentations, posters sessions, panel discussions or workshops here.

Second, our contract with AOM, the association handling the business affairs of the CDS, has been expired for nearly two years and as such, we were operating on the basis of “good will” between the CDS and AOM.  I am pleased to inform you with the full consent of the CDS board, a one-year contract for 2014 with AOM has now been signed and is in place.  This provides both entities a legal contract in which we can carry out the business-related activities of the Society.

Third, a team of board members conducted a site visit to Lexington, KY last week for the purpose of exploring possible hotel venues for our 2015 annual meeting.  I was honestly blown away by the exciting things going on in Lexington and the mix of activities that await our conference participants.  The local host committee, constituted of colleagues from the University of Kentucky and other partner organizations and institutions located in or near the state of KY , are already doing some superb work in anticipation of the 2015 meeting.  I promise you that the Lexington, KY meeting is going to be a “must attend” conference for our CDS members and guests.

Finally, I have been hearing through the grapevine about the expanded investments being made by our higher education institutions in the community, economic, and regional development arena.  The number of new positions that have been announced or that are slated to be announced in the near future is exhilarating.  Simply put, the value and importance of what we do as a profession and discipline is gaining traction in several universities and colleges.  If you happen to be at a university, college, government agency, nonprofit organization, or other association that has hired new people engaged in community/economic development-related work, please urge them to become a member of the CDS.  It’s a great way to get them connected to a team of colleagues across the world that is doing innovative research, application, and technical assistance work that’s  resulting in positive improvements in the lives of people, communities and regions.

I wish all of you a Happy Valentine’s Day and look forward to sharing more exciting news with you in my March column.  Take care!!

 

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February Charts of Note

Compiled by Timothy Collins, Assistant Director, Illinois Institute for Rural Affairs

 

Many Federal Food Assistance Programs Rooted in the War on Poverty

Direct Government Payments to Producers as a Share of Gross Cash Farm Income (GCFI) Have Fallen in Recent Years

Fruit and Vegetable Prices Respond Differently to Oil Price Increases Based on Shipping Route and Carrier

Agriculture and Its Related Industries Provide 9.2 Percent of U.S. Employment

Incomes fell For U.S. Families in All Income Groups between 2007 and 2012

The Conservation Reserve Program Is Regionally Concentrated

Food Insecurity among Children Linked to Educational Attainment of Adult Household Members

Working-Age Adults Ate Fewer Meals, Snacks, and Calories Away From Home Following the 2007-09 Recession

Rural Veterans More Likely to Graduate from High School and Obtain College Degrees

Crop Acreage Has Shifted to Larger Farms

WIC Program Benefits from Large Rebates on Infant Formula 

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Community Development Headlines - CDS UpFront February 2014

By Timothy Collins, Assistant Director, Illinois Institute for Rural Affairs

Why State Economic Development Strategies Should Be Metro-Centric

How the Daily Commute Hurts Civic Engagement

Rich, Poor, and Unequal Zip Codes

USDA’s Food Assistance Programs: Legacies of the War on Poverty

Food Insecurity in Households With Children: Prevalence, Severity, and Household Characteristics, 2010-11

Food Hubs: Sustainable Agriculture’s Missing Link

Why the Food Movement Must Focus on Raising Food Workers' Wages

Drought in the West Is Bringing Hard Times to Minority Farmers

America's Future Cities: Where The Youth Population Is Booming

America's Glass Half-Empty, or Half-Full?

Dynamic Redevelopment for Everyone

Where the Oil Boom Sounds the Loudest

Fracking Jobs Come with Costs, Paper Says

A "Pay-It-Forward" Approach to Funding Solar Power

Accommodating Floods Instead of Destroying Waterways

FCC to Launch Rural Broadband Trials

Blue-Collar Hot Spots

Rural Veterans At A Glance

Speak Your Piece: The Vanishing Postmaster

A Good-Bye to Norma Jean

Still 'Black and White and Read All Over'

Zapatista Communities Celebrate 20 Years of Self-Government

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President's Update: Honoring and Engaging Our Past Presidents

By Bo Beaulieu

It is hard to believe that our annual meeting is only six months away.  If you’ve not done so yet, please take time to submit a proposal to be an active part of the 2014 meeting since the deadline date is quickly approaching.   I can tell you that the program planning committee has confirmed some exciting speakers to be part of our meeting, so I hope you will opt to attend and be a formal part of our 2014 conference.

I am pleased to inform you that we have established a CDS Past Presidents Committee and several previous presidents of our Society have agreed to be part of this new committee.  In a recent letter to the committee members, I outlined some of the important input and guidance that I am hoping the group will provide to both the Board and me.  This includes taking part in one or more panel sessions at the 2014 meeting, thus allowing some of our younger members to interact with some of the pillars of Society.  Moreover, past presidents will be asked to share their insights on how we can continue to grow our endowment and how they may wish to contribute to a special issue of the Community Development journal.  Other areas in which they would like to assist will be discussed as well.

Furthermore, in partnership with the 2014 program planning committee, we will be inviting our living past presidents to take part in this year’s meeting. We will honor these individuals as part of the opening reception.   It should be a special event and I can’t wait to say “thank you” to these individuals on behalf of the CDS. 

Let me take this opportunity to wish you a Happy New Year and look forward to hearing from you.  Please feel free to email be at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..  Take care!

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Shifting from Resolutions

Here we are and it's January again. It's a time of renewal, or simply catch-up after the holiday season. I decided not to make any resolutions this year, but rather to focus on a few goals and areas for improvement. Many of these relate to my career as a community development practitioner, such as being more timely and to take on less responsibility. I want to focus on this things that are most important to me in 2014, namely my family and my career, which is why I started out with these simpler points. Likewise, I want Vanguard to continue to improve and be an important resource for me fellow CDS members and colleagues. Do you have any CD resolutions you want to share? Do you have any ideas on how Vanguard can improve to be more useful to you? Share your thoughts here!

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Community Development Headlines - CDS UpFront January 2014

Compiled by Timothy Collins, Assistant Director at the Illinois Institute for Rural Affairs

 

Obama Names 2 Rural “Promise Zones”

The Wicked Problem of Urban Biodiversity

Should Planners Encourage Diverse Neighborhoods?

Urbanization Has Been Destroying the Environment since the Very First Cities

The Abuse of Art in Economic Development

An Uneasy Truce: The War on Poverty

JFK’s Rural Development Legacy

“Picked Off Like a Single Quail”

Farm Policy Made the Republic: Now What?

Philly’s New Land Bank: Will It Give Blighted Communities a Boost?

Veggies at the Liquor Store—and 5 Other Ways to Bring Food to Your Community

Political, Economic Power Grow More Concentrated

Rural Character in America’s Metropolitan Areas

To Rebuild, the Midwest Must Face Its Real and Severe Problems

Fighting the Vacant Property Plague

Where Are the Boomers Headed? Not Back to the City

This Land Is Ours: African Americans and the Great Outdoors

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January Charts of Note

Farm Estate Taxes Vary by Type of Family Farm

Which American Households Struggle to Put Food on the Table?

How long do food-insecure households remain food insecure?

Emerging Energy Industries Have Had Varied Impacts on Local Employment in Rural Areas

Small Family Farms Account for Most U.S. Farms and a Majority of Farm Assets

Minorities Represent a Lower Share of Rural Veterans than of the Rural Population

Rural High-Poverty Counties Are Concentrated in the South and Southwest

Poorest SNAP Households Least Likely to Get Additional Support from Unemployment Insurance

What Is “Very Low Food Security?”

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