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Letter from the Director
Our success is made possible through our collaborations with community leaders, cities, residents, foundations, corporations, and other key partners who share our vision and commitment. Together, we should be proud of Bay Area LISC's 25 years of accomplishments, and look forward to our collective ability to create a positive future in the decades to come.
Gala Marks 25 Years of Building Healthy Communities for All
Don Gilmore, Executive Director of CHDC North Richmond, and Mona Masri, Western Division Initiatives Director of Community Relations at Citibank.
Over 300 guests attended the October 25th gala to celebrate Bay Area LISC's 25th anniversary. The event was held at the beautiful Asian Art Museum in San Francisco, and guests enjoyed live music, drinks, hors d'oeuvres, and the chance to socialize with leaders in the community development field.
Speakers at the event included Michael Rubinger, President & CEO of LISC; San Francisco Supervisor Sophie Maxwell; Jesse Blout, Mayor's Office of Workforce and Economic Development; and Kevin Johnson, President and CEO of St. HOPE, a member of LISC's national board, and a former NBA star. Mr. Johnson spoke of the courage and commitment needed to take the risks necessary to make a true difference in local communities. He praised LISC for its successes, and challenged the audience to hold a positive vision for local communities and to have the commitment and resolve to achieve that vision.
Bay Area LISC wishes to thank the companies, organizations, and individuals who helped to make our 25th Anniversary Gala a success. We especially want to acknowledge all of the community development organizations with whom we have partnered and who have worked so hard to make neighborhoods' dreams a reality.
See a complete list of our 25th Anniversary sponsors below.
AmeriCorps Members Build Homes for Hurricane Katrina Victims
Members of Bay Area LISC's Americorps program recently joined their peers from around the country and partnered with Habitat for Humanity to help rebuild homes damaged by Hurricane Katrina. More than 60 volunteers spent a week on the hurricane-ravaged Gulf Coast in Biloxi, Mississippi, splitting time between intensive training sessions and building houses.
According to Zoe Schmitz, an AmeriCorps member with Community Housing Partnership in San Francisco, "Working in community development can lead to so many abstract successes. It was a nice change to see the benefit of my work with my eyes, and not just with my mind."
Bay Area LISC hosts 18 AmeriCorps members every year as part of a nationwide program. The one-year and summer-long internships provide the members with hands-on experience working with local nonprofits and develop the skills they need to become effective agents for positive community change.
Burton High Playing Field Gets a Makeover
Burton High School students recently celebrated the opening of a brand new synthetic athletic field. The field was funded in part with a $200,000 grant provided by Bay Area LISC in partnership with the National Football League (NFL) and the NFL Players Association. The field at Burton High is the only public football field in southeast San Francisco and is a crucial recreation facility for Burton High students and the community at large.
Burton High student Tyre Ellison helps dedicate his school's new field.
A number of San Francisco dignitaries attended the opening ceremony, including Mayor Gavin Newsom, Supervisors Fiona Ma and Sophie Maxwell, and former NFL player and Burton High alumnus Michael Kirtman. The new field is only the beginning of a citywide effort to rehabilitate high school athletics, according to Mayor Newsom. Bay Area LISC will be part of this effort to restore more playing fields in San Francisco and in other cities throughout the region.
Citibank Takes the Lead in Building Communities
Cheryl Evans of Citibank accepts a Visionary Circle Award from LISC CEO Michael Rubinger and Bay Area LISC Local Advisory Committee Chair Dan Lopez.
Citibank is one of the nation's strongest supporters of community development and one of Bay Area LISC's most committed partners. Since 1982, Citibank has provided over $626 million in grants and loans to LISC and its partner, the National Equity Fund. The bank recently provided a $50,000 Visionary Circle sponsorship for Bay Area LISC's 25th Anniversary, and was a lead sponsor of LISC's 2005 Urban Forum, held in San Francisco last year.
Many of Bay Area LISC's hallmark programs are made possible by Citibank's commitment to local communities. Citibank supports such programs as the Neighborhood Marketplace Initiative, Bay Area LISC's partnership with the City of San Francisco to stabilize and revitalize commercial corridors in neighborhoods like Bayview and Excelsior. For the past three years, Citibank has also been the lead sponsor of the Housing Development Training Institute (HDTI), an intensive year-long training institute for affordable housing developers. The institute is a central component of Bay Area LISC's efforts to build and sustain the nonprofit affordable housing field.
"As supporters and partners," says Western Division Director of Community Relations Cheryl Evans, "we couldn't be more proud and appreciative of the efforts that Bay Area LISC makes to keep so many Bay Area neighborhoods vibrant, diverse and accessible to people at all income levels. We look forward to continuing our long and fruitful partnership."