Noreen Duffy

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Andrew Young: Public projects (like stadiums) should invest where most needed

 

 

By Vickie Evans-Nash

Contributing Writer

 

Former U.S. Ambassador Andrew Young, as featured keynote speaker at last Thursday’s 2012 Minneapolis Urban League Gala “Picking up the Torch,” offered an example of how a public project in Atlanta — not unlike Minneapolis’ new Vikings stadium — invested heavily in an economically depressed community and served as a catalyst to turn it around. The implication was clear: What was done in Atlanta could be replicated here. Scott Gray, MUL’s president and CEO, pointed out during the May 31 event at the Minneapolis Convention Center that 2011 was not an easy year for the organization, now in its 87th year of serving the community. It dealt not only with the Northside tornado, but also a state shutdown and a lingering recession that affected funding and gave the organization reason to scale back on services, which they were fortunately able to avoid. Yet, “Last year [we placed] 200 job seekers in living-wage jobs… We served over 1,000 people impacted by the tornado, we helped 67 families avoid foreclosure and saved their homes, and we nearly served 3,000 folks that came through the Urban League to get free tax help with our partnership with Accountability Minnesota,” Gray reported during the event. Continue Reading →

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