Stream cleanup underscores requirements for a sustainable society 

Philadelphia-based United by Blue (UBB) conducts commerce connected to the conservation of oceans and waterways. Today, as a participant with their “Cleanup Crew,” Philadelphia’s Tacony Creek provided a visceral example of the long-term consequences of an unsustainable society.  It’s been years since I volunteering for community service with manual labor and decades since Iast picked…

Philadelphia Water provides lessons for community, urban innovation 

The federal government regulates some U.S. cities based on their size and infrastructure to manage storm water. In the city of Philadelphia, these regulations inspired Green City, Clean Water, a 25-year initiative that applies sustainable practices to reduce water pollution and beautify urban communities.  While such projects deliver economic, social, and environmental benefits, associated costs…

It’s about race, because

Brandon Stanton, founder of Humans of New York, doesn’t consider himself a photographer. He prides himself on a more specific talent–drawing out deep and intentional meaning from random connections. Stanton, a 32-year-old white male, relies on these niche abilities to literally support himself.   As a person of color, I couldn’t help but envy Stanton’s…

Wells Fargo reveals the cost of privilege

“Cross selling is a way of deepening customer relationships.”  That was the go-to response by John Stumpf, chairman and CEO, Wells Fargo when cross-examined by United States Senator Elizabeth Warren about questionable sales practices and quotas within the world’s second largest bank.  Stumpf’s steadfast commitment to his remarks demonstrates how privilege undermines accountability at the…

Little Theatre marquee update gets two thumbs up

One of the hardest parts of change is figuring out the best way to let people know. Here in Rochester, community organizations can struggle when trying to keep the public informed. Today, however, The Little Theatre got it right. Scott Pukos, public relations coordinator for The Little Theatre, today published a blog post, “Facts About…

Why I turned off Twitter and its endless quest for trends 

On July 28, 2016 a highly-regarded digital marketer tweeted #balloonlivesmatter during the conclusion of a historic Democratic National Convention. This play on the grassroots movement, #BlackLivesMatter, ignited a series of actions that ultimately ended my time on Twitter. My daily habit of scrolling was quickly replaced with a one-time check of stories in The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal. Some would perceive this move as…

Crisis requires community to shift from reaction to preparation 

Like much of the country, the Rochester region grapples with the state of the nation following a series of lethal events between minorities and law enforcement. The fallout from these incidents continue to inspire numerous conversations across the community. Unfortunately, it’s an all too familiar pattern. If tragedy strikes a slate of forums and summits…

String of violence requires action rooted in reflection and compromise

In the aftermath of tragedy across the country, the United States mourns the deceased and searches for answers. Joe Scarborough, host of MSNBC’s Morning Joe, said “This is a nation on edge.” Three major issues emerge as both potential causes and consequences of these events: fractured race relations, gun violence as a public health epidemic,…

Britain chooses nostalgia, fear over global relevance

Boris Johnson, the former mayor of London and key champion of the Leave movement, conveyed great optimism following Britain’s decision to leave the European Union (EU). He said, “…we can find our voice in the world again, a voice commensurate with the fifth-biggest economy on earth.” And if left to Johnson, that voice will be English-speaking. While Johnson promoted Britain’s departure from the EU as a defense of…

Combating sexism requires conscious and constant change

An argument broke out on my flight home. Two young professionals, presumably working at a startup, fought about scaling staff and securing funding. A white male lobbed cliches, anecdotes as evidence, lofty numbers between $50 to $100 million; then there was this gem: “You’re the only person who doesn’t understand what I’m trying to say. This is about a big…

D&C marks new era with a public experiment in media

I once worked with a client whose primary message read, “Change inspires innovation.” The words captured the spirit of perseverance through constant — and many times disruptive — change. The message could serve as a mantra within the world of media. For publishers, complacency is no option as consumer behavior and media consumption continues to…