More than 1,300 community developers from 47 states converged on Des Moines, Iowa, this week to attend the 2011 National Main Streets Conference organized by the National Trust for Historic Preservation.
A key theme repeated during the conference illustrated how communities with healthy Main Street districts are two steps ahead in the race to create and retain jobs.
In small towns all across the country, downtown is typically two or three blocks of businesses run by familiar faces, a place where one knows who is at the local diner by the cars and trucks sitting outside. Ensuring these districts remain vibrant many times requires a significant investment in buildings, capital and infrastructure, often financed through USDA Rural Development. Read more »
Maggie Rhodes, pictured in Afghanistan, has been a USDA agricultural advisor there since December 2009.”
For the last 26 years, I have proudly worked for the U.S. Department of Agriculture. In 2009, I made a life- and career-altering decision to leave my job as the team leader in Program Allocations and Management Support with USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) in Washington D.C. and volunteered to help support USDA’s efforts in Afghanistan. Read more »
Cross posted from the Let’s Move! blog:
Every now and then we come across a great story of people making change in their communities and so it was on the next stop in the Recipes for Healthy Kids competition. Tribal communities are focusing a lot of attention on ending the epidemic of childhood obesity in Indian Country and attention and credit is due to Monument Valley High School in Kayenta, Arizona. Located on the Navajo Nation, they are the only school district in Indian Country to make it to the semi-finals of First Lady Michelle Obama’s Recipes for Healthy Kids competition.
The team at Monument Valley is making its contribution to a healthy community by designing a nutritious recipe that will be served to their classmates and with a bit of luck, students across the country. Our judges, score cards at the ready, could not wait to take that first bite. Read more »
Janie Hipp is passionate about her work.
Hipp, a Senior Advisor to Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, delivered the keynote address at the National American Indian Housing Council national conference going on in Phoenix, Arizona, this week. She noted that one of the first things that Secretary Vilsack did when he walked in the door was to create an Office of Tribal Relations—a move that impressed the straight-talking Hipp.
“Historically, we have had maybe one person trying to work across 17 agencies scattered in just about every county across the country…and around the globe,” she told the nearly 500 attendees. Read more »
USDA Rural Development State Director for Michigan James J. Turner speaks at the groundbreaking for Morton Township Library.
Recently Morton Township, Michigan held the groundbreaking ceremony for its library expansion. Located in the Village of Mecosta on the western side of the Lower Peninsula, the event was a wonderful example of how a rural community can come together to support a project. Read more »