Derek Douglas on How the University of Chicago Supports Local Kids and Families

Posted April 25, 2018, By the Annie E. Casey Foundation

Derek Douglas from the University of Chicago talking at a UChicago Local event.

Anchor institutions, such as hospitals and universities, can be powerful economic drivers in the communities they serve.

It’s a critical role — and one that can be strategically leveraged, according to Derek Douglas, who leads the University of Chicago’s urban development and civic engagement efforts on a local, national and international scale.

In a new podcast episode, the Annie E. Casey Foundation’s Lisa Hamilton interviews Douglas, who served as President Barack Obama's senior adviser on urban policy from 2009 to 2011. Their conversation explores the untapped potential of anchor institutions and why these organizations deserve a seat at the local decision-making table. Listeners will also learn how anchor institutions across the country are collaborating in innovative ways to help strengthen families and communities.

A huge thank you to Derek Douglas for chatting with us!

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What You’ll Learn in This Episode

  • Examples of anchor institutions.
  • What kinds of opportunities these institutions create in their communities.
  • About CASE, a consortium of anchor institutions in Chicago.
  • Examples of anchor networks that are active in cities today.
  • Tips for anchor institutions that are interested in building a network.

Conversation Clips

In Derek Douglas’s own words…

“This is not about charity. It's about investing in strong business in our communities.”

“By working collaboratively we can achieve more good together than we can on our own.”

“I think that the potential for anchor institutions to play a role in upping the strength in our communities and the strength in our families…it's off the charts.”

“When you're fighting against inequality or for economic mobility or whatever it may be, anchor institutions need to be on the front lines.”

Resources That Received a Shout-Out

About the Podcast

CaseyCast is a regular podcast produced by the Annie E. Casey Foundation and hosted by its vice president of external affairs, Lisa Hamilton. Each episode features Hamilton talking with a new expert about how we can build a brighter future for kids, families and communities.

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