Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Emergency Bill Status Report for December 6 leg meeting

Emergency Bill Status Report December 6 2016 Leg Meeting by Susie Cambria on Scribd

Staff changes at CFSA

An email from Brenda Donald, Deputy Mayor, Health and Human Services, Interim Director, CFSA:
CFSA Team and Partners:

I want to let you know about two key hires and a promotion to fill important leadership positions in Program Operations. We're fortunate to be bringing back CFSA veterans who made significant contributions in their previous tenures and to have on-staff talent fully ready to step up. Principal Deputy Director Heather Stowe and I have every confidence in the following people and hope you will join us in welcoming them.

Deputy Director, Entry Services
On January 9, 2017, Jill Forbes will rejoin CFSA in the position left vacant by Michelle L. Farr's personal decision to move to the next chapter in her life. Michelle is a hard act to following, having served CFSA ably and with great dedication for 15 years. Jill is completely up to the challenge. Many of you will remember her as CFSA's hard-working and effective administrator of Placement Services from 2005 to 2012. Since then, she has continued to expand her impressive background.

Jill has more than three decades of experience in human services, beginning as a juvenile justice caseworker and quickly moving into management and leadership of direct services. In her home state of Massachusetts, she headed public and private programs that provided youth training and rehabilitation, child welfare, and mental health services. After leaving CFSA by choice in 2012, she was vice president of Connecticut and Rhode Island operations for Lutheran Social Services of New England for two years. Since 2014, she has been the director of the public child welfare agency in neighboring Fairfax County, VA. Jill has a B.A. degree in psychology and sociology from the University of Denver and M.A. degree in counseling psychology from Assumption College (Massachusetts).

As deputy director, Entry Services, she will oversee CFSA's intake function composed of Child Protective Services-Investigations and Child Protective Services-Family Assessments. She will report to Principal Deputy Director Heather Stowe.

Deputy Director, Community Partnerships
On December 12, Robert Matthews will rejoin CFSA in the position formerly held by Debra Porchia-Usher, who decided to leave CFSA last summer for career adventures in California. You may recall that from 2012 through 2014, Robert served as CFSA's administrator for Placement Services. He was instrumental in organizing and launching the KinFirst strategy that made a child's relatives CFSA's first placement option. He also developed a new support unit for kinship parents, worked with advocates to start Family Link "ice breaker" meetings between birth and resource parents, and supported implementation of the electronic debit card for Grandparent Caregiver subsidies—among other achievements.

In Tennessee, Robert led a successful initiative to increase kinship care and reunification. Later, he was appointed as assistant commissioner of Adult and Family Services for the Tennessee Department of Human Services. In that role, he managed a host of social services programs such as Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF), Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Medicaid eligibility, child care certification and licensing, emergency shelter, and adult protective services. Robert also served as chief of staff for the Maryland Department of Human Resources. For the past two years, he has been a senior associate with the Annie E. Casey Foundation, providing technical assistance to child welfare agencies in Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Rhode Island. Robert holds a B.S. degree in social science from Tennessee State and an M.S. degree in public administration from Cumberland University (Tennessee).

As deputy director, Community Partnerships, Robert will oversee social work units directly serving in-home cases as well as continuing implementation of Safe and Stable Families (our IV-waiver program). He will report to Principal Deputy Director Heather Stowe.

Program Administrator, Community Partnerships
On December 12, Lia Walker will step up in Community Partnerships to manage all the CFSA social work units directly serving in-home cases. This will provide a seamless transition from current Administrator Jeremiah Hawkins, who is moving with his family to Philadelphia.

Lia has been with CFSA for 12 years, steadily progressing from a social worker at Ferebee Hope to an in-home supervisor based at the Far Southeast Collaborative. Since 2011, she has been one of two program managers for In-Home Services. During her tenure at CFSA, Lia has worked on numerous strategies to improve practice and performance such as planning for DC CrossConnect, introduction of the Caregivers Strengths and Barriers Assessment, development of the chronic neglect units, and implementation of practices for quality home visits and safety documentation.

Before CFSA, Lia worked as a social worker, parent educator, and supervisor at Children's Hospital Guidance Center/Advocacy Center, Columbus, OH. She has a B.A. degree in sociology from Claflin College (South Carolina) and an M.S.W. from Ohio State University. As program administrator, she will report to Deputy Director Robert Matthews.

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

A gentle nudge: Submit your events to Wards 7 and 8 Community Calendar

Wards 7 and 8 Community Calendar Promotion Flyer by Susie Cambria on Scribd

Does your organization or community group have events in Wards 7 and 8?   Add them to the Wards 7 and 8 Community Calendar.   The calendar lists all kinds of events by all kinds of organizations.   The purpose is to make finding out what is happening #eotr easier.

Update your media list: @willsommer leaves WCP for national work

Congrats to Will!   He'll kill it like he has the local beat.   And a special thank you for his fab coverage of my wage theft!

Wild Apricot's curated list of nonprofit webinars in December 2016

Thanks to Wild Apricot, we've got the latest list of free webinars.   The offerings are not the same-old, which is a very good thing.

19 Free Nonprofit Webinars for December 2016 includes:

  • This Is How Our Most Successful Clients Fill Their Events, December 1
  • Professional Pathways: Intentional Career and Leadership Development, Starting from Wherever You Are Now, December 7
  • Winding Down/Gearing Up: 10 Legal Tips To Get 2017 Ready, December 8
  • Engaging the Volunteer of the Future, December 13
  • Understanding Soft Risk in Volunteer Engagement, December 15

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Monday, November 28, 2016

Lemon Ricotta Pound Cake

Looking for a non-cinnamon-nutmeg-allspice dessert for the holidays?   Try the Lemon Ricotta Pound Cake (found in Recipes).   It's a breeze to make and good for breakfast, a mid-day snack, or dessert.

Image: Lemons 1, Alen Stojanac

Wards 7 and 8: Airbnbing your home for the inauguration?

Good Council, Nov. 27

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Highlights of Wards 7 and 8 events, week of Nov. 28

Take a look at the entire Wards 7 and 8 Community Calendar.

November 25 DCR tweeted

Update your media list: Laura Evans to leave WTTG Dec. 2

Laura Evans Leaving 5 - 11/21 - DCRTV hears that Channel 5/WTTG evening news anchor Laura Evans (right) is leaving. "After 18 years at Fox 5 DC, and 26 years as a journalist, I am starting a new chapter in my professional life," she says. "As fulfilling as my work here at WTTG has been, I am very excited to begin this new journey that involves my passions and will make a difference in our community. I am proud to have been part of such an awesome team of creative and motivated journalists." Her last day at the Fox-owned station will be December 2. She says she'll soon make an announcement about her plans.....

Image: @lauraevansfox5.

Saturday, November 26, 2016

Yahoo and Google groups in DC

Do you want to communicate with folks in your community or with members of a special interest group?   Surely there's a Yahoo or Google group.

I recently added my list of such groups to Google Drive as Yahoo/Google Community (Discussion) Lists and asked a few fellow users to take a look and make changes.   @PetworthDCNews and @apaurbach delivered.   Now I'm asking you!

Don't have changes or are new to these groups?   Feel free to simply use the list.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Update your media list: Larry O'Connor gets new WMAL show

WMAL Replaces Savage With O'Connor - 11/22 - Cumulus news talker WMAL, 105.9/630, is giving Larry O'Connor (right) his own three-hour afternoon drive show, starting January 2. Currently, WMAL carries syndicated talker Michael Savage from 3 PM to 5 PM, with O'Connor hosting an hour-long locally-produced show, "The Drive At 5," until 6 PM. The new "Larry O'Connor Show" will air from 3 PM to 6 PM. O'Connor will leaving his AM co-hosting duties on "Mornings On The Mall" with Brian Wilson. A new partner for Wilson is being sought. In addition to his WMAL work, O'Connor serves as an editor-at-large with "During this time of unprecedented change and interest in Washington DC, it's an exciting and humbling opportunity to help facilitate an entertaining and provocative conversation on a station as important and influential as WMAL," says O'Connor. "During the four years I've been here in the Nation's Capital, I've been so impressed with this community's engagement in not only our government, but with issues that hit our kitchen tables every day - like pop culture, faith, and parenting." Adds WMAL Program Director and Vice President Bill Hess, "Larry's success, both on our morning and 5 PM shows, has positioned him perfectly to re-open the local afternoon daypart on WMAL. He's smart, entertaining, and an engaging storyteller who will anchor a program built on the stories of the day, with expanded service elements for our busy DC commuters".....

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

November 18 DC Register tweeted

#NoBarriers November 21: Man in wheelchair risks his life to cross the street

WUSA*9's Andrea McCarren was in Ward 7 November 21 for the station's #NoBarrier's project.   She found a mess along Minnesota Ave NE between East Capitol St NE and Benning Rd NE.   She also identified an non-ADA compliant walkway across 295.   Check out her story Man in wheelchair risks his life to cross the street for details.

If you are aware of impassable sidewalks or curb cuts in DC, let McCarren know on Twitter, @AndreaMcCarren, or email the #NoBarriers team ( a photo or short vid.

Add to your event distro list: Wards 7 and 8 Community Calendar

A few years ago, several Ward 7 and 8 residents took action in reaction to poorly-advertised and thus attended community events.   We created the Wards 7 and 8 Community Calendar and two Twitter accounts — @Ward7Outreach and @Ward8Outreach.   The calendar does not replace organizational event lists; rather, it is a way to amplify all that the community has going on.

Calendar coordinators (of which I am one) urge organizations of all kinds ― nonprofits, DC government, federal government, civic associations, loose groups of neighbors ― to submit public event information so that the event can be added to the calendar and promoted on Twitter.   There is absolutely no charge for this.   The calendar is maintained as a public service, from one neighbor to another.

Organizations do not need to have an office in Wards 7 or 8 for their event to be included.   Only the event has to take place #eotr.

Wards 7 and 8 Community Calendar Promotion Final by Susie Cambria on Scribd

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Recap of MMB call re: Trump Administration

Ward 7 resident Justin Lini (, @NE_DC_11), prepared this recap of the call Mayor Bowser had with the community Saturday, November 19.

Good evening, I hope this note finds you well. Mayor Bowser is just wrapping up a conference call taking questions from DC residents on how the District Government is going to respond to the Trump Administrations.

Although the conference is complete the mayor's office is still accepting questions via email at:

Q: What are the steps we plan to take as Washingtonians to move forward?
A: This is what's on everyone's mind. The shock. We've had to regroup. I'm assigning a team to review the policies of Trump. We're analyzing public comments, 100 day plan, etc. The biggest issue we're worried about is. What does it mean for vulnerable communities in DC? He's said he's going to round up people and try to send them out of the country. Said he was going to ban Muslims from entering, or force them to register.

We are a sanctuary city. What does this mean? It means that MPD is not an agent of the Federal Government, they're focused on protecting and serving DC residents regardless of immigration status. Our officers are not allowed to ask about immigration status. We provide service no matter who you are.

We have to figure out the other proposals he's made.

We reject any notion of people being forced to register because of their faith.

Q: How should be talking to our kids about this election?
A: Parents know their children the best. I've heard many parents have this problem. I suggest taking it on even if they're not asking about it. I would tell them to be hopeful. We've had transitions many times before. While we are going to prepare for the worst case scenario, but we can be hopeful for things to work out better.

We have to do the things that cities do, the things that families do. People still have to carry on with their lives, but stay focused on how to protect our values.

Q: We're uniquely vulnerable to cuts in federal funding to sanctuary cities threatened by Trump.
A: This underscores why we need to be a state. DC's budget has to go through congress. Many politicians threaten us, typically over social issues- women's' choice, needle exchange, budget autonomy. We have to continue to be concerned, fight budget riders. We will need you citizens of DC to stand up. Have to stand up to Congress to keep them out of DC's affairs. We need to tell them, don't focus on us, focus on your job.

Q: We want to hear strategies to oppose racial profiling we've seen since the election. How do I keep myself and people around me safe.
A: We want to remind everyone how far we've come with policing in DC. Recent study showed that MPD has made tremendous progress in community policing since 2000. We have an excellent and professional police force. Our police leadership is committed to constitutional enforcement of laws. We oppose racial profiling, asking for citizenship status. We have an independent police complaint board.

We must be mindful of what federal law enforcement areas are doing, be ready to have conversations.

Q: People are being personally threatened/intimidated by...
A: Pastor Byrd: The tone and tenor in this election cycle has been poor. Whether words or not, a threat has impact. We talk about police deescalating situations. We as citizens must learn how to deescalate. There's people out here who are crazy, they feed off fear. We as a community must take responsibility for our own actions and words. We must then help others. We can't be afraid. We must have faith. We must stick together, gather around our common principles to oppose insightful and indecent behavior.

Q: Will you appoint a liaison to work with the Trump Administration
A: We had our first meeting with the inaugural committee. We have been conducting this business as we have for the last 28 years. HSEMA is working with Federal agencies to secure parade, special event routes. We will have conversations outside of this process as well. In the Obama administration we worked with the President's Office of Intergovernmental Affairs.

Q: Has anyone from the Trump administration reached out to you. What would you like to impart to them.
A: He's appointed the inaugural committee and we've been working with them. I'm seeking a meeting to talk about them. There are many misconceptions about our city, we want to clear them up. The idea that we exist at largess of federal funding is wrong. Most of the federal funds we receive also go to states. We want to separate federal Washington from local Washington in his mind. We want him to be clear that we aren't involved with the federal squabbles. We want him to know and understand that we're a city with neighborhoods and residents. We want them to understand that we have a city government and that it works well. We want him to understand why we week statehood. Pence has been in favor of us getting representation in the past. Trump has been eager to put more tasks in the states.

We also want to talk about WMATA. We think the Federal government has a unique role to play in restoring WMATA. He could play a role in improving things.

I'm concerned about where he might go with Criminal Justice reform, we saw some progress in the Obama administration. We need to remain focused on criminal justice.

Q: What are our next steps for Statehood in light of the new administration?
A: We've used our New Columbia Statehood Commission to approve the new constitution. To establish the boundaries of the state, and define the form of government. We will work with Chairman Mendelson soon to plan transmission of request to congress. We will attach this plan to an Admissions Act that Congresswoman Norton will move. We need to continue our work in the states. The overwhelming vote we just had makes it easy for us to launch a public education campaign for the rest of the country. People don't know that we lack the rights. When they find out its a no brainer that we should have them.

Q: I feel there's too much danger for Washingtonians to go to the inauguration. I think its sad we have to put our city in jeopardy due to all the anger.
A: I feel privileged that we're the city where the president lives. Any president. In this case its trump. In four years it could be someone else.

This is what it means to be a democracy. So what's our job as a government and citizens. We have to put the best foot forward- we make sure the parade route is okay, ensure safety of visitors. Work closely with federal partners. Our officers will be in the neighborhoods, as well as in inauguration. We have 3000 officers coming from around the country to participate in inauguration security-this is what we always have asked. It is a holiday in DC, so people may come or not.

We have to focus on the government's job. We have to look deep into ourselves to find how we can move forward.

Q: What about entitlement cuts discussed in congress?
A: This is a big concern that we have, in particular Obamacare. We are concerned that many people could lose insurance, especially if they have preexisting conditions, or are currently sick. If we wanted to pick this up as DC. It would be expensive 300-500 million. Trump has started peddling back from some of these claims around Obamacare. We are concerned about things like the Department of Education.

I hope to have a clear analysis of Trump's proposals in the coming weeks. I'm having these conversations with the DC Council about how we move forward.

Q: How do we combat rumors and fear? DC Government could do a real service by setting up a service that conveys accurate information about decisions made about our DC and what we can do.
A: We will continue to collect questions, we have a FAQ on our DC websites.

Q: How can we help you?
A: I appreciate this. You can help by pointing people in the right direction. I'll be reaching out to my various offices (Latino affairs, religious affairs) about specific impacts/threats.

There may be a time when I need you to show up and speak up. I'll want to see a whole lot of like minded Washingtonians who will stand with me to fight for our values.

Keep asking questions, keep identifying problems. If someone is acting inappropriately- especially a government employee this needs to be reported. I'm sending a clear message to government employees that we serve everyone. If you see a business showing prejudice then report us.

Keep talking to each other. We'll get through this together.

Formatting added.

December 7: Street Sense event When Your Income Isn’t Enough

When Your Income Isn’t Enough: Bridging the Divide Between Homelessness & Affordable Housing takes place Wednesday, December 7 from 6:30 – 8:30 pm at Church of the Epiphany Sanctuary (1317 G St NW).

The background:

73% of DC residents earning around $15,000 or less experience severe housing cost burden, which is defined as paying more than 50% of your income on housing. DC’s housing isn’t affordable because the definition of affordable housing is paying 30% of your income for housing.

Attend and learn about affordable housing in the city and the ways that the community can address the gap in affordable housing that keeps so many experiencing homelessness homeless.

Registration is requested for this free event.

Saturday, November 19, 2016

November 19: Hypothermia Alert to be activated 7p

The Department of Human Services will activate the Hypothermia Alert Saturday, November 19 at 7:00 pm.   NWS expects the wind chill to be 23 degrees overnight.

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Ward 7 residents, register for the Ward 7 Action Summit

Miss the November 15 COW and leg meeting? Here they are.

UPDATE 11/16, 4:20p: Date corrected in title.

Take note: Hypothermia Hotline number has changed

(202) 399-7093 and 311 are the numbers to know to get help for folks experiencing homelessness.   Note the absence of the (800) number; the ICH is phasing it out since pay phones are hard to find.   (See the latest Winter Plan (PDF)).

So be prepared to help experiencing homelessness this winter.   Program your mobile phone with one or both of these telephone numbers, share them with others, Tweet them, post on Facebook!

(Hypothermia Season is November 1 - March 31.)

And the Diane Rehm replacement program is...

Tune in to The Diane Rehm Show November 16 at 10:00 am to hear the news: Rehm and a surprise guest will announce the details about the new program taking Rehm's time slot.

Image: The Diane Rehm Show

FY 2018 budget resolution, proposed

At the November 15 COW, DC Council Chairman Phil Mendelson introduced PR21-1023 - Fiscal Year 2018 Budget Submission Requirements Resolution of 2016 (PDF).   Highlights:
  • Mayor's proposed FY 2018 budget due to council and made available to public by March 23, 2017
  • A bevy of "school-related budget documents"
  • "A chart identifying the estimated funding gaps for capital maintenance projects and new capital projects in each fiscal year of the current approved and proposed CIPs and an explanation of the progress being made in closing those gaps. The explanation shall address projects being funded through public private partnerships (P3s) and identify the impact that the proposed P3s will have on the financial plan and debt cap analysis."
  • A crosswalk from FY 2017 to FY 2018 for any agency whose budget structure has changed
  • Agency performance accountability reports due (delivered to CMS and made available to the public) by January 31, 2017

The proposed resolution will be voted on at the December 6 Legislative Meeting.

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Update your media list: Roz Plater, WJLA split

Roz Plater Gone From 7 - 11/7 - Another longtime Channel 7/WJLAer has left the Sinclair-owned station. Nighttime reporter Roz Plater is no longer there, we hear. She has been missing from WJLA's airwaves of late. Before joining WJLA, Plater worked for Fox's Channel 5/WTTG. FTVLive reports: "Word is that [WJLA] management told Plater that she would be used less often and she hasn't been seen on the air for sometime." More as we hear it.....

Good Council, November 14

Sunday, November 13, 2016

Saturday, November 12, 2016

November 14: Mendelson's regular leg meeting preview

Media advisory from Mendo's office:

Council Chairman Phil Mendelson will hold a Media Briefing to preview the Council's upcoming Legislative Meeting.

Monday, November 14, 2016
10:30 a.m.

John A. Wilson Building, Room 412, 1350 Pennsylvania Avenue NW Washington, DC 20004

Chairman Mendelson will hold a media briefing to discuss major actions to be taken at the Council's Additional Legislative meeting on Tuesday, November 15, 2016 at 11:00 a.m. or immediately following the Committee of the Whole.

Additional information is available by calling Lindsey Walton, (202) 724-8140.

Unable to make it to the Wilson Building?   Watch the briefing streaming live on the council website.

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Thursday, November 10, 2016

November 11: Pay tribute to the thousands of DC gov employees who served during World War II

From the DC Council:
Join us tomorrow as we unveil and rededicate the historic, monumental (6'x11') World War II Memorial that no one has seen intact and in this building since the 1990s. Pay tribute to the nearly 1,900 District government employees who served during World War II.

Honor Restored, A Mystery Solved, and History Reborn:
The Wilson Building Reinstalls and Rededicates Its World War II Memorial

On Veterans Day (Friday, November 11) at 11AM, Chairman Phil Mendelson and the Council of the District of Columbia will right a decades-old wrong and restore honor to nearly 2,000 DC government employees and warriors who had inadvertently lost their place of honor in our seat of government.

A lovingly restored World War II memorial will return to the walls of the Wilson Building for the first time in three decades, once again honoring the historic intent of those who originally had it installed nearly 75 years ago. The rededication will occur at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, echoing the end of World War I, which in turn inspired the creation of Veterans Day.

The History
In 1942, in the midst of World War II, a decision was made to install in the District Building a memorial honoring District government employees serving in the armed forces during World War II. During a 1990s renovation of the building, the memorial was removed, damaged, and stored in such a way that its identity was forgotten. In the early 2010s, the memorial was unearthed but remained unidentified.

The Mystery
Earlier this year, through archival detective work, the mystery was solved. At an event tagged to Memorial Day, the Council revealed that the plaques included the names of nearly 1,900 DC government employees who served in all branches of the armed forces during World War II. Men and women's names are intermingled on the list, which is also fully multiracial.

In the time since Memorial Day, the pieces of the memorial (some panels as large as doors, some chips as small as fingernails) have been overseen by local art conservation industry leader Artex. The craftsmen and historians at Artex have been reassembling the puzzle that is the memorial, as well as reproducing the memorial's missing title panel.

Archival Resources
This article on the Council's website goes into much more detail regarding the history of the Wilson Building's World War II Memorial, and includes links to the actual archival materials we used to resolve the mystery that enabled the memorial's reinstallation.

Because this event will be held on a Federal and a District holiday, you must enter the Wilson Building (1350 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW) through its D Street entrance, to the Ground Floor. Once you have cleared security, please follow signage to the event.

Thought you might be interested Thursday: I read because...

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Remember and retell your history

Marya McQuirter, a local historian and native Washingtonian, is embarking on dc1968, a digital project commemorating the 50th anniversary of 1968, an incredibly important year in the U.S. and globally.   The purpose of the project is to celebrate and recognize the individuals and organizations in the District of Columbia who helped make 1968 such a memorable and transformational year.

The dc1968 website will feature content for each day in 2018.   Content will be by and about DC residents and organizations.   McQuirter is crowdsourcing content for dc1968 and will rely on social media to collect and share ideas.   She is counting on Washingtonians and others to share their photographs, home movies, etc. that highlight a person, organization, or event in 1968.

You can also suggest people, organizations and events that should be covered.   Was there a city-wide swim meet that your school won in 1968?   Were you a member of a Girl Scout troop that hiked along the Anacostia River?   Did you hear Martin Luther King, Jr. speak at the National Cathedral on March 31?   If so, she would love to talk with you about these and other stories.

McQuirter also invites secondary school teachers and university professors to contact her about having their students work on the project.

So far, McQuirter has learned that:

  1. the Workshops for Careers in the Arts (now Duke Ellington High School) by Peggy Cooper Cafritz and Mike Malone was founded in June at George Washington University
  2. Drum & Spear Bookstore was founded by Charlie Cobb, Courtland Cox, Curtis Hayes & Judy Richardson on June 1
  3. a support group for Parents of Hippies at Thomas Episcopal Church was held on January 2
  4. the Teenarama Dance Club was shown on WOOK-TV on Monday January 1
  5. the Washington Performing Arts Society held a concert conducted by Leonard Bernstein on Sunday, September 29 at Constitution Hall

Do you have ideas?   Do you want more information about the project?   Connect with Marya McQuirter via email,, or Twitter, @maryamcquirter.

Image: Ákos Rappay,

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

This map blew C. J. Cregg's mind

Riddle me this, flat Earth theorists: If the planet isn't a sphere, why is it so hard to put it on a flat map?

So begins Why Are We Still Using Bad Maps?   This Popular Science article briefly describes the challenges with the Mercatur and other maps and goes on to write about one of the latest maps, the AuthaGraph World Map.   Can't handle the math of taking a sphere and making it flat and at least moderately accurate?   Do what writer Michael Koziol suggests and watch this video from The West Wing.

Monday, November 7, 2016

Celebrating Susan B. Anthony's legacy with "I Voted" stickers

Week of November 7: Events and activities in Wards 7 and 8

View the entire Wards 7 and 8 Community Calendar and learn how to submit events.

Mapping DC addresses just got easier

OCTO's GIS team recently released DC MAR Geocoder 4.0, a new desktop geocoder that makes mapping addresses easier and more accurate.

Using the updated geocoder enables you to visualize information on a map.   In my consulting work, for example, I've mapped farmer's markets in Wards 7 and 8, small businesses in Ward 7, and nonprofits in Wards 7 and 8.   Some of the maps have been shared online while others have been used internally to plan and organize.

The MAR Geocoder 4.0 can be used to map data from Microsoft Access and Excel.   Download the DC MAR geocoder.

Sunday, November 6, 2016

Good Council, Nov. 6

Be creative this holiday season, support a vet!

Personal, handmade, and heartfelt greetings for the season are incredibly meaningful, especially to those who have served our country.   Make the day of veterans by participating in the annual handmade holiday card creation and distribution!

This card creation effort is perfect for groups of all kinds and sizes, from small to large organizations, early learning centers, schools, and families.

On Friday, December 9, the handmade cards will be distributed to residents of the Old Soldiers Home/Armed Forces Retirement Home.   Card distributors will also deliver hugs, sing, and offer lots of holiday cheer.

Have cards?   Let card distro organizer Sarah Gabriel know and work out how to get the handmade cards to her.   Connect via email,

Friday, November 4, 2016

November 4: The Kojo Nnamdi Show

DC Councilmember Yvette Alexander, Ward 7 rep and Chair of the Committee on Health and Human Services, will guest on The Kojo Nnamdi Show Friday, November 4 at Noon.

She'll talk about the "Death with Dignity" legislation among other topics.   If you have a question for the CM, tweet WAMU producer Mike Martinez (@MikeMartinezDC) before Noon.

Some questions submitted so far:

  • "Deets of the economic development vision & plan for #ward7 w/ expla re: cmty engagement"
  • "Like 2 know her thoughts on @ggwash piece poiting out dearth of urgent care facilities #eotr and what can be done 2 remedy"
  • "For @kojoshow tomorrow, wd like 2 know why more did not get done in #ward7 & what obstacles cd not be overcome"

Finally, the lineup:

Recap of November 1 council actions

From the Council of the District of Columbia's website:
Death with Dignity, Youth Smoking Ban Pass After Powerful Debate

Legislation is not just about public policy. It is also informed by history, economics, geography, emotion, and philosophy. The latter two marked the Thirty-Fifth Legislative Meeting in a way that few Council regulars could recall.

Predictably, debate on the Death with Dignity bill resonated both emotionally and intellectually with Councilmembers and advocates on both sides of the debate. Questions about when life ends, how, and who if anyone can make such decisions set the broad philosophical context for the discussion, but the very real details of personal life and death experiences provided the essence of the day. Deep and authentic individual experience reigned in a way that reinforced the personal, family-oriented aspect of the subject matter. In the end, technical changes suggested both the by Executive and the insurance industry were incorporated in the legislation, and the bill passed its first of two required votes by an 11 to 2 count.

A second debate that equally evoked a political philosophy class centered around a proposal to increase the legal smoking age from 18 to 21. What might seem at face value to be primarily a health measure instead triggered discussions of government responsibility, legislated morality, what constitutes adulthood, who should go to war for the nation (and when), and what kind and quantity of youth rule violations can trigger a school-to-prison pipeline. After a debate far broader than the purview of the actual legislation, this measure passed 10 to 3 for its required second vote.

In other action, the Council also approved:

  • A tightening of distracted driving laws
  • The transfer of four derelict District-owned properties in Ward 8 to a nonprofit tasked with redeveloping them as workforce housing
  • Elimination of sales tax on feminine hygiene, youth diapers, and adult diapers
  • Rental protections for the elderly and disabled
  • Comprehensive youth detention reforms
  • Continuation of the current school nurse system, and level of service provision at a minimum, through the end of the 2016-2017 school year
  • Reform of medical marijuana laws

Consideration of an Advisory Neighborhood Commission Reform measure anticipated at this meeting was postponed until the Council's next Legislative Meeting, which will be on November 15.

For a full list of votes taken at the most recent meeting, please click here.

Thursday, November 3, 2016

The weekend #eotr

New report: October DC economic indicators

The Office of the Chief Financial Officer today released the October 2016 economic indicators report.   Report highlights:
  • The total number of jobs in the District increased by 13,300 (1.8%) compared to the previous August
  • The federal government sector gained 4,200 jobs (a 2.1% increase) compared to a year ago; while the education and health sector gained 2,400 jobs (an increase of 2.0%) over the previous year
  • The unemployment rate for the District was 6.0% in August; 0.1% higher than the previous month
  • The number of new unemployment claims increased by 2.6% compared to the previous year
  • 312 condos were sold in August 2016; a 6.3% decline from one year ago
  • In August the median price for a single family home increased by 2.5%, while the median price of a condo increased by 3.0% from the previous year

Highlights from the email announcing the latest report.

Thought you might be interested Thursday: Jay-Z on talent, genius

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Who uses "bespoke" and "artisinal" in a GEICO commercial? Ice T of course.

You've surely seen the Lemonade Not Ice T: It's Not Surprising GEICO commercial.

But have you seen the companion The Art of the Squeeze with Ice T video?

TA: "Our brains have more trouble processing speech as we age, but there are ways to fight it."

Do you work with older residents?   Did you know, as Charlie Sorrel writes,
Normally a human can focus on a single speaker in a busy environment, picking out their speech even over the nattering of the surrounding crowd, but as we age, we get worse at distinguishing signal from noise.

Have a greater positive impact on older residents first by reading The Reason Why Old People Have Bad Hearing Has Nothing To Do With Their Ears and second by doing something.

What can you do?   You can structurally minimize noise in waiting rooms; give people pagers similar to those used in restaurants rather than, or in addition to, calling names; and place white noise machines in intake cubicles.   You could also look at people when you speak to them.   Recall this from Sorrell,

If you can see the speaker's lips, that helps to better understand their speech. If you are talking to an older person, then, you should make sure they can see you and are paying attention to you, before speaking.

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

November 1 #DCision16 update

Here is some additional information to review before you vote:

There are likely more endorsements and information; these are the ones that were in my inbox.

Free trainings for nonprofits, curated by @WildApricot

Thanks to Wild Apricot, we've got the latest list of free webinars.   29 Free Nonprofit Webinars for November 2016 includes:
  • Nonprofit 911: 5 Ways Your Board Can Help with Year-End Fundraising, November 3
  • Social Media and Volunteer Engagement, November 8
  • Where Do I Go From Here? Engage Volunteers in New Ways, November 10
  • Introduction to Proposal Writing, November 30

Peter Jamison, the Post's new JAWB reporter

WaPo has a new reporter for all things JAWB: Peter Jamison.   WCP's Will Sommer announced the news on Twitter October 27.

Jamison started October 31 per the WaPo announcement (in a format that's easier to read than what Sommer tweeted).

Week of October 31: Highlights of events in Wards 7 and 8

Take a look at the whole Wards 7 and 8 Community Calendar for all events.

#Storify: Good Council, new feature from DC Council