Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Must follow: Aaron Gregg

September 1: Webinar on voter registration drive how-to's

Nonprofit VOTE is holding a free webinar Thursday, September 1 at 2:00 pm.   The subject: Voter Registration on National Voter Registration Day.

Join the webinar to learn how to plan and implement a voter registration drive, including innovative tactics, proven effective practices, and messaging.

Register for the September 1 webinar.

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Update your media list: Doug Hill to WGTS

New transportation pilot to launch soon in Wards 4, 7, and 8

The Department of For-Hire Vehicles (DFHV) will launch the Neighborhood Ride Service By Taxis (NRS) ― to provide more transportation options in the traditionally underserved Wards 4, 7, and 8 ― by September 30.   Cabs (8-seat shuttles) will travel a fixed route in each ward.   Passengers can get on and off anywhere along the route; the cost is $5 and payment can be made with cash or credit card.

DFHV wants feedback from the public on the proposed routes (pptx).

While the agency did study the underserved areas to determine the route, they want input from residents.   To comment on the route, go to the DFVH feedback page Tell Us What You Think, click on the "What do you think of the Neighborhood Ride Service By Taxis?" option (the last on the list as is shown in the orange box below), and then select "open in a new window-->."

My recommendations to the Department of For-Hire Vehicles are to post the route document in PDF since not everyone has PowerPoint and to get rid of the blurry images and replace them with ones which are readable.

Monday, August 29, 2016

Highlights of the week of August 29 in Wards 7 and 8

View the entire Wards 7 and 8 Community Calendar.

Parents, take the annual OSSE survey

Neibauer promoted, building permit blog no more

And, of course, the news that precipitated the end of the blog: Michael Neibauer promoted at WBJ.   Congrats Michael!

TA: Tools to share quotes

Thursday, August 25, 2016

August 27 and 28 in Wards 7 and 8

Take a look at the entire Wards 7 and 8 Community Calendar; see what's up and learn how to submit events.

"The Internet and You": New resource for teachers, others to use with kids

The Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University recently released The Internet and You, a set of new educational resources for children in grades 1-3 (release and links).

This is a free resource for teachers and others who work with children, such as those in OST programs.

According to the release,

"Young learners today are surrounded by digital technologies, but often they haven't had the guidance in basic best practices that can help keep their online experiences positive," said Berkman Klein Fellow and "The Internet and You" author Leah Plunkett. "Our new materials aim to support educators with the right tools to empower students to better navigate the digital space."

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Update your media list: Koslof to join WUSA as reporter

From DCRTV August 22:
Evan Koslof Joins 9 - 8/22 - Evan Koslof has been hired as a reporter for Channel 9/WUSA. He comes from a like gig at Channel 16/WBOC in Salisbury. Koslof starts at WUSA in September.....

And from Koslof's Facebook page (Evan Koslof Reporting):

Many of you have probably heard already, but I figured I'd formally announce it to everyone! I'm incredibly honored and excited to announce that I've been hired as a reporter at WUSA 9, the CBS affiliate in DC. To my friends and viewers of Delmarva - this is of course bittersweet. I'm ecstatic to head "home" to my dream city and my dream job, but I'll always love my time on the peninsula and in the first state. And to WBOC TV 16 Delmarva's News Leader, I have nothing but positive things to say. This station is a model for ethical journalism, and I owe all my future success to what I learned there. I will finish up at WBOC on Sept. 2, and I'll be off to WUSA the following week! Can't wait to get started! #DCBound #tvnews #Journalism #WashingtonDC

Finally, follow Koslof on Twitter: @ekoslof.

Better, broader communications to engage residents in Ward 7 and Ward 8

A year or two ago, several Ward 7 residents came together to do something about the generally poor communications among residents and with those outside this part of DC.   The result was Ward 7 Communication Channels.   This online spreadsheet started out as and continues to be crowdsourced (hint: use it and add changes as needed).   It contains: Where neighborhoods are online; SMDs; ANC online discussion lists and websites; community electronic newsletters; physical distribution locations; houses of worship; and free and affordable space.

When Ward 7 Communication Channels was being developed, the Ward 7 residents and East Bank DC got together to create an online calendar of events taking place in Wards 7 and 8.   The calendar, Wards 7 and 8 Community Calendar, contains on-going events (think Honfleur Gallery and Anacostia Museum), events taking place over several months (think Friday Night Fishing and farmer's markets), and one-time events (think #Readsistance: 2nd Annual Read and Feed and the East of the River Book Festival).

Every day, organizations and individuals contribute content to the calendar.   But more events are taking place than are on the calendar.   It's easy and free to contribute; how-to details are on the calendar page.

Publishing on the calendar is not enough.   @Ward7Outreach and @Ward8Outreach tweet the calendar events every day.   In addition, I post the weekly highlights and weekend events on Facebook on the The Greater Ward 7 and The Great Ward 8.

Last but not least: I have just launched Ward 8 Communication Channels; it has the same tabs as the Ward 7 version but all empty save for the houses of worship (needs much work).   Do you have information to share to make communicating with all residents of Ward 8 happen?   Please add!

Monday, August 22, 2016

TA: Effective event engagement

Does your organization have events?   Want to up your marketing game?

Check out Buffer's Event Marketing 101: How to Keep Attendees Engaged Before, During and After Your Event.   Buffer demonstrates that social media activity before the event is a must-do.   Some ways to engage in advance are promoting attendance, event reminders, schedule announcements, buzz from ticket buyers, and encouraging those who cannot attend to push those who are to share pics and info on platforms such as Twitter and Instagram.

There is a lot to learn from Buffer.   For example, I learned to share behind-the-scenes pics well before the event begins, treat followers to a sneak peek back stage during the event, and use questions and polls to engage and interact with the audience during and after.

Friday, August 19, 2016

RainPay: innovation protects the Anacostia River

Stormwater―rain the rain that runs off of pavement, roofs, and sidewalks—can do considerable damage to the Anacostia River and its tributaries.   Stormwater causes erosion and perhaps worse, washes all manner of pollutants into the river.

The Anacostia Waterfront Trust has developed a solution: RainPay.

According to the blog post RainPay: beautify your property, make money and protect the Anacostia River:
RainPay program helps to mitigate the problems caused by stormwater by working with property owners to install high quality green infrastructure projects (also known as rain gardens) in the areas of Anacostia watershed where they have the most impact.

The Anacostia Waterfront Trust is currently seeking property owners (nonprofits, houses of prayer, and small businesses) to participate. Qualifying property owners can receive a beautiful rain garden for their property at no cost. Additionally, participants receive payments for hosting the rain garden on their land and are able to benefit from a reduction in their monthly stormwater fees assessed by DC Water. Participants also get the satisfaction of knowing that RainPay maximizes social, environmental, and job benefits.

Read the entire blog post for more information about this innovative program.   In the meantime, take a look at the image below to learn how the Progressive National Baptist Convention is mitigating stormwater via RainPay.

September 13: Reducing Poverty and Increasing Opportunity: Envisioning the Next 20 Years

Urban Institute and National Association for Welfare Research and Statistics will host Reducing Poverty and Increasing Opportunity: Envisioning the Next 20 Years Tuesday, September 13, Noon - 1:30 pm at Urban Institute.   The event will feature panelists with various backgrounds and expertise who will share their views and the evidence on successful strategies for reducing poverty and increasing opportunity.

Learn more and register.

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Update your media list: Alicia Montgomery joins WAMU

From DCRTV August 18:
Alicia Montgomery Joins WAMU - 8/18 - American University public radio news talker WAMU, 88.5, selects Alicia Montgomery as its new editorial director. She joins WAMU from her role as supervising senior producer of "Code Switch," NPR's cross-platform reporting initiative focused on race, ethnicity, and culture. Montgomery led the development of the team’s successful podcast, which launched in June of this year. Previously, she was one of the production leaders of 'Tell Me More," where she edited Michel Martin's Murrow essay series, "Can I Just Tell You." Prior to joining NPR, Montgomery spent two years reporting for A University Of Maryland University grad, she grew up in Columbia, Maryland.....

Sunday, August 14, 2016

DMPED adds portfolio manager

From Washington Business Journal:
Patrick Smith
Project Manager, Real Estate Division at District of Columbia, Office of the Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development

EDUCATION: University of Maryland (College Park, MD)
Smith will be responsible for managing a portfolio of real estate development, financing, and related projects which will grow the District's economy and create opportunities for residents. Smith was formerly director of real estate development for the Dupont Underground.

Friday, August 12, 2016

"I Still Have A Keycard," a WTTG podcast

From DCRTV August 9:
Sarah Fraser Starts Fox 5 Podcast - 8/9 - Channel 5/WTTG news features contributor Sarah Fraser launches the first-ever Fox 5 podcast - "I Still Have A Keycard." According to the station's website, it'll show "a side of your favorite Fox 5 personalities you've never heard before." First up - reporter and anchor Maureen Umeh. More at

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Sign Up for National Voter Registration Day 2016

National Voter Registration Day 2016 is Tuesday, September 27.   If you are concerned about the number of residents in your community who are not registered to vote, consider participating in this effort.   Join others in supporting National Voter Registration Day 2016.   When you join, you will receive a packet of posters, stickers, and a toolkit explaining how you can participate.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Older residents encouraged to take needs assessment survey, deadline Aug. 30

The GW Center for Aging, Health & Humanities, with the DC Office on Aging (DCOA), is conducting a Needs Assessment for older adults (60 and older) in DC.   The purpose of the survey is to identify the unmet needs of seniors in the city so GW can:
  • make recommendations to DCOA and service providers to better meet your needs
  • identify evidence-based, cost-effective practices in other communities
  • develop creative strategies within the wards

The deadline for the survey is Wednesday, August 30.

Survey materials:

Highlights of the week of August 8 in Wards 7 and 8

Monday, August 8, 2016

August 22: 20th anniversary of welfare reform event

The 20th Anniversary of Welfare Reform: Learning from the Past to Guide the Future event takes place Monday, August 22 from 3:00 - 5:30 pm at the US Capitol.

Sponsors Secretaries' Innovation Group, AEI, University of Maryland, and Progressive Policy Institute have packed a lot into a short amount of time.   Panels are Reflections from welfare reform pioneers, Welfare reform in the Clinton White House: 'The end of welfare as we know it,' Welfare reform in Congress: Fulfilling a 'contract with America,' and Welfare reform in the states: Can state experimentation lead to progress in the future?

Registration is required by August 19 at 4:00 pm.

New inventory of interventions to improve school success

If you are searching for an evidence- or research-based intervention for school-age children, look no further than WSIPP's Updated Inventory of Evidence- and Research-Based Practices: Washington's Learning Assistance Program.   The inventory covers interventions such as tutoring, parent support, extended learning, and behavior support and indicates whether the intervention is evidence- or research-based or is a promising practice or "Produces null or poor outcome."

While this was produced for the Washington State legislature, the information is valuable to all, especially since WSIPP defines the terms used.

Friday, August 5, 2016

Events in Wards 7 & 8 August 6-7

Get the details of all the events on the Wards 7 & 8 Community Calendar.

Free webinars in August 2016, curated by @WildApricot

Thanks to Wild Apricot, we've got the latest list of free webinars.   20 Free Nonprofit Webinars for August 2016 includes:
  • Web Accessibility 101, August 9
  • How to Captivate and Engage Constituents with Your Website, several dates
  • Telling the Story of Volunteer Impact, August 18
  • Building Your Nonprofit Internship Program: First Steps, August 25

And lest you think that the only thing I love about Wild Apricot is their monthly curation of trainings, I love this even more: They are super responsive as you can see below.

The good, bad, and ugly: Another ODCA report

This is not a surprise to anyone who interacts with or follows DC government: "Results of the Auditor's Examination―Overall, District agencies did not adequately monitor the various requirements contained in the agreements that each developer signed with the District government."   So writes the author of the Office of the District of Columbia Auditor report District Agencies Did Not Provide Sufficient Oversight of Private Development Projects and Have Not Collected Potentially Significant Fines (PDF).

The author also writes:

It is important to note that just because District agencies often failed to adequately monitor the developers' performance, that does not mean that the developers did not comply with the requirements. In both cases, the developers complied with some or most of the requirements in their agreements, even when there was little to no documented District government oversight. (p. 6)

There was a lot at stake in these two developments.   The DC government needed to deliver on the promise of affordable housing.   For the developers, the stakes were loan bounty.

The SeVerna on K apartment developer, for example, agreed to deliver seven community benefits for the more than $24 million loaned to SeVerna Phase II, LLC on December 21, 2012 by DMPED and DHCD.   The benefits:

  • Provide 80 units of affordable rental housing for households with a total income not exceeding 60 percent of the Area Median Income (AMI).
  • Provide 21 units of affordable rental housing for households with a total income not exceeding 50 percent of the AMI.
  • Set aside 48 rental units for former residents of the Golden Rule Center and Temple Courts Apartment Complex.
  • Contract and procure goods and services from Certified Business Enterprises in an amount equivalent to no less than $9,905,055.
  • Use the Department of Employment Services as the first source to fill all new jobs created as a result of the project.
  • Fill at least 51 percent of the newly created jobs with D.C. residents.
  • Use District residents registered in programs approved by the District of Columbia Apprenticeship Council for 35 percent of all apprenticeship hours worked in connection with the project.

A similar agreement was struck with Station Holdings, LLC for the Station House apartments (701 2nd St NE).

For those interested in good government, affordable housing, or accountability, this is a must-read and -save for the agency oversight hearings that will take place in February 2017.

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Post-Rehm program at WAMU will be "deep, civil conversation"

From DCRTV July 28:
WAMU Plans For Post-Rehm Show - 7/28 - American University public radio news talker WAMU, 88.5, has hired Rupert Allman as executive producer for the program that will replace Diane Rehm, who is retiring later this year. Allman comes from NYC's WNYC, where he has been executive producer of "The Takeaway." Rehm announced last year that she will end her nationally syndicated late morning talk show after the 2016 presidential election. The direction of the new program will be shaped by Allman and a new host who has not been announced, WAMU General Manager JJ Yore tells He expects the new show, which WAMU is calling "Project X" for now, to be built from the "best of the DNA of The Diane Rehm Show." However, WAMU is looking to "create a show that is more diverse, that is multi-platform from inception and has a more flexible format," Yore says. For example, the successor to Rehm will move away from its current format of one topic per hour. "Some days it may be two subjects, some days we may go longer on one," Yore adds. But "the new format will continue to have a deep, civil conversation, that will be one of the characteristics of the show." Yore says WAMU has a list of about 70 hosts as potential successors to Rehm. The station contracted Madhulika Sikka, who formerly worked as executive editor at NPR News, to assist in the host search, Current adds.....

Monday, August 1, 2016

Activities and events in Wards 7 & 8, week of August 1

Here are some events and activities taking place in Wards 7 and 8 during the week of August 1.   Find more events on the calendar.

TA: Making your press release rise above the rest

Want to brush-up on press-release writing and distribution skills?   Head on over to Free Tip Sheet! Make Your Press Releases Stand Out where Cision's Maria Materise lists and describes ways to make your release stand out.   Materise also links to "9 Ways to Make Your Press Releases Stand Out".