|2011 Coro Neighborhood Leadership Participants at |
As the Program Director, I am proud to have had a strong hand in shaping the inaugural curriculum and in leading a truly accomplished cohort of 20 seasoned professionals through the five-month program. What these BID and CDC practitioners discovered was that professional and personal networks can be improved at any stage of professional development, and that key leadership skills (even the best of us need this!) are bred, not born. Becuase this is a field that attracts professionals from a variety of backgrounds - the process of bringing them together to share in dialogue and best practices is valuable not only for what they learned from the program, but perhaps even more so for what they learned from one another. The program also recieved a 2011 Downtown Merit Award by the International Downtown Association (IDA) for excellence in downtown leadership and management.
In announcing year two of the program as part of a comprehensive set of neighborhood retail initiatives, Mayor Bloomberg stated “small businesses are the backbone of our City’s economy and our neighborhood retail corridors are the driving force behind job creation and economic growth". The City's efforts will "provide local neighborhood retail districts with the tools they need to jump-start local economic activity, attract new retailers and reach a whole new range of consumers.” [See Oct. 27, 2011 Press Release]
And for those of you who like video...NY1 did a nice news piece, click here to take a peek: "Officials Work to Revitalize Lower East Side Businesses"
For all these wonderful accolades, the most significant feedback comes from participants. Blaise Backer, Executive Director of the Myrtle Avenue Brooklyn Partnership, and no stranger to accolades for his work turning Myrtle Avenue around ("Pratt Institute Takes an Interest in Making a Neighborhood Nicer", NYTimes, 2/11/11) offers this testimonial:
"Neighborhood Leadership was a huge benefit to my professional development and has helped me both on and off the job. As the director of a small non-profit, my busy workday rarely provides me the time to reflect on my leadership skills and work habits. This program provided me with a much needed opportunity to pause from work in order to develop my skills, assess my current challenges and develop strategies to overcome them, and to learn from my peers and Coro's excellent facilitators. I highly recommend the program for those working in the field of neighborhood and commercial revitalization."
The Coro Neighborhood Leadership Program is made possible by generous funding from the NYC Department of Small Business Services. Eligible participants include staff at nonprofit organizations that serve commercial districts in New York City and whose work focuses on commercial revitalization activities. A majority of participants selected will serve low to moderate income neighborhoods with a limited number of slots open for participants who do not fall within this category.
Click here for more information on eligibility and to download an application.