Past Event

Ending Concentrated Poverty

New Directions After Katrina

12:00 AM - 11:59 PM EDT

Ending Concentrated Poverty
New Directions After Katrina

Katrina vividly exposed the persistence of concentrated poverty in America, and social science evidence suggests that such concentration is both socially and economically debilitating. Katrina has also provided an opportunity to address that poverty,s not only in the Gulf, but nationwide. It has led to renewed interest in breaking up poverty concentrations and providing low-income families with much-needed opportunities for housing mobility, home ownership, and ultimately, access to the American Dream. The models range from housing mobility programs like Moving to Opportunity and Gautreaux, to the creation of mixed-income communities through public-private partnerships, to inclusionary zoning.

Does Katrina provide a new opportunity for reformulating the government’s approach to housing policy? Is there a progressive vision for breaking up poverty-concentrated communities and for creating housing opportunities for low- and moderate-income families in the Gulf Region and beyond? What are the right program models? A distinguished and diverse group of speakers will address these questions and offer specific proposals for moving forward.

•Video:  Panel
•Video:  Q and A

Transcript (PDF)

Note: All videos provided in QuickTime (MPEG-4) format.

Angela Glover Blackwell, Founder and Chief Executive Officer, PolicyLink
Renée Lewis Glover, Chief Executive Officer, Atlanta Housing Authority
Alexander Polikoff, Director, Public Housing Transformation Initiative, Business and Professional People for the Public Interest
Bart Harvey, Chairman of the Board of Trustees and Chief Executive Officer of The Enterprise Foundation

Moderated by:
Derek Douglas, Associate Director for Economic Policy, Center for American Progress

Center for American Progress Report
• Rebuilding Homes and Lives: Progressive Options for Housing Policy Post Katrina by Joel Horwitch, Jason Lakin, Lydia Bean, Andrew Jakaobovics, Jal Mehta, and Derek R.B. Douglas
• New Start New Orleans: Good Jobs for a Better Gulf by Hilary Pennington

Panelist Reports
• A Proposal to End the Black Ghetto As We Know It by Alexander Polikoff
• Ending Concentrated Poverty: New Directions After Hurricane Katrina by F. Barton Harvey
• Equitable Gulf Coast Renewal: Creating Housing Opportunity Through Inclusionary Zoning by Angela Glover Blackwell
Making a Case for Mixed-Use, Mixed-Income Communities to Address America’s Affordable Housing Needs by Renée Lewis Glover


Angela Glover Blackwell is Founder and Chief Executive Officer of PolicyLink, a national nonprofit research, communications, capacity-building, and advocacy organization. PolicyLink is committed to Lifting Up What Works®, with a mission of advancing a new generation of policies to achieve economic and social equity, based on the wisdom, voice, and experience of local leaders who are shaping successful solutions to national problems. PolicyLink partners with a cross-section of stakeholders to ensure that questions of equity receive the highest priority in addressing major policy issues, including: urban sprawl and smart growth, reinvestment in low-income communities, bridging the digital divide, eliminating racial health disparities, and developing leaders for policy change. PolicyLink is a leading advocate of equitable development, a comprehensive approach which includes the fair distribution of affordable housing throughout regions and equitable public investment. Blackwell is a co-author, with Stewart Kwoh and Manuel Pastor, of Searching for the Uncommon Common Ground: New Dimensions on Race in America (W.W. Norton, 2002). She is a frequent guest in the media and her appearances include ABC’s Nightline, NOW with Bill Moyers, and National Public Radio. She has been published in the opinion pages of The New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, and the San Francisco Chronicle . Prior to founding PolicyLink in 1999, Blackwell served as Senior Vice President for The Rockefeller Foundation, where she directed the Foundation’s domestic and cultural divisions and developed the Next Generation Leadership and Building Democracy programs, centered on issues of inclusion, race, and policy. In 1987 she founded the Urban Strategies Council in Oakland, California, and received national recognition for pioneering a community building approach to social change through in-depth understanding of local conditions, community-driven systems reform, and an insistence on accountability. For a decade, beginning in 1977, Blackwell served as a partner with Public Advocates, a nationally known public interest law firm representing the underrepresented. Blackwell earned a Bachelor’s Degree from Howard University, and a law degree from the University of California at Berkeley.

Renée Lewis Glover joined the Atlanta Housing Authority (AHA) as CEO in September 1994. Since that time, she has been widely acknowledged for her business leadership and strategic approach to community redevelopment. At AHA, Glover pioneered master-planned, mixed-finance, mixed-income residential development where families of all socioeconomic profiles live next to each other in the same amenity-rich community. Glover has been nationally recognized for her role in transforming U.S. urban policy. By introducing mixed-income communities into our cities, she has improved not only housing, but also public schools, transit access and employment opportunities. In fact, the model Glover created at AHA is now used as the redevelopment blueprint by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. In July 2003, Renée Glover was chosen by the Atlanta History Center as one of Atlanta’s Defining Women. She was named Public Official of the Year 2002 by Governing Magazine. In June 2002, a collaboration among the Center for American Women and Politics, the Ford Foundation and the Council for Excellence in Government recognized Glover as one of the top ten American women in government. Glover has also been featured in Atlanta Women Speak, an anthology of speeches from Atlanta’s political and corporate leadership. Prior to joining the Atlanta Housing Authority, Glover was a corporate finance attorney in Atlanta and New York City. She received her Juris Doctorate from Boston University, her Master’s degree from Yale University and her Bachelor of Arts from Fisk University.

Bart Harvey is Chairman of the Board of Trustees and Chief Executive Officer of The Enterprise Foundation. He took over leadership in 1993 from co-founder James W. Rouse after close to 10 years of working together to further the organization’s mission of providing decent, affordable housing and a path out of poverty for low-income families. During Harvey’s tenure, Enterprise has grown into one of the largest providers of financing and technical expertise to community development organizations.  Working with more than 2,500 national and local partners, Enterprise has raised and invested more than $6 billion in our nation’s struggling communities since 1982, including helping provide over 175,00 decent, affordable homes. Rouse and Harvey are credited with working with Congress to create the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit, which, after 20 years of bi-partisan support, provides the financing for the vast majority of affordable rental homes in this country.  Harvey continues to shape ways to ensure better outcomes for low-income families, most recently by bringing leaders from the environmental and green building fields to create Green Communities™. This $555 million initiative will help build more than 8,500 affordable homes that promote health, conserve energy and natural resources, and promote easy access to jobs, schools, and services. He received his MBA and BA degrees from Harvard University in 1974 and 1971, respectively.

Alexander Polikoff stepped down as Executive Director of BPI in September 1999 (Business and Professional People for the Public Interest), a Chicago-based public interest law and policy center, having held that position for 29 years. He continues to serve on the BPI legal staff, and retains responsibility for BPI’s ongoing Gautreaux public housing litigation as lead counsel for the plaintiff class. Before coming to BPI in April 1970, Polikoff was a member of the Chicago law firm of Schiff Hardin & Waite. He received his Bachelors and Masters degrees from the University of Chicago (the latter in English language and literature), and a J.D. from the University of Chicago Law School, where he was Editor-in-Chief of the Law Review. Polikoff has served as a Director and General Counsel of the Illinois Division of the American Civil Liberties Union, and is a former national ACLU Board Member. For both BPI and ACLU he has carried on litigation in the housing, civil rights and environmental fields, including a successful argument before the United States Supreme Court in the Gautreaux litigation. Polikoff is the author of a number of articles on civil liberties and urban affairs and of Housing the Poor: The Case for Heroism (Ballinger, 1977). Waiting for Gautreaux: A Story of Segregation, Housing, and the Black Ghetto, is scheduled for January 2006 publication by Northwestern University Press.

Derek Douglas is the Associate Director for Economic Policy at the Center for American Progress. At the Center, Derek directs the Economic Opportunity Program, which focuses on issues that bear directly on the economic condition and mobility of low- and middle-income families, such as jobs, debt and housing. Prior to joining the Center, Derek was a Counsel in the Strategic Counseling Practice Group at O’Melveny & Myers LLP, where he advised clients on matters with a close nexus to politics, legislation or regulation. In this capacity, Derek worked with members of Congress, administration officials, and their respective staffs in advising clients on matters involving congressional hearings and investigations, federal and state legislative developments, and international and federal regulatory enforcement issues. Before joining O’Melveny, Derek was an Assistant Counsel at the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF), where he specialized in the area of education. At LDF, Derek litigated an array of educational issues, including: educational equity, public school choice, affirmative action, high stakes testing, and the reduction of racial, ethnic and socioeconomic isolation in public schools. Derek also developed and directed legislative and community outreach efforts in support of his litigation. Derek joined LDF by way of a Skadden Fellowship, which is a public interest fellowship given each year to 25 law school graduates throughout the country. Derek graduated from the University of Michigan with Highest Honors in Economics, and from the Yale Law School. After graduating from Yale, Derek clerked for The Honorable Timothy K. Lewis on the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. Derek also worked in the Economic Studies Program at The Brookings Institution as a Research Assistant to Dr. Charles Schultze.