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Author Archives: transformrockford

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New support tools for neighborhoods

The Great Neighborhoods project engages neighborhoods to focus on the assets that they have and to begin mapping them. Every neighborhood has attributes that make it a Great Neighborhood; things that make it great, unique, and desirable. Every neighborhood also has some challenges. We want to help recognize the good, and help you work with others to make what is good even greater and work to resolve some of the challenges. It’s part of a mutual benefit that goes beyond an individual neighborhood and makes our community even greater. We have recently launched a website dedicated to the Great Neighborhoods project and includes many useful resources including a Resource Guide and a Neighborhood Directory. 

New Website!

Aside from the built environment, communities are made of people. And the strongest communities are the ones in which people are connected and engaged. To connect more with your neighborhood check out our recently launched website dedicated to the Great Neighborhoods project that includes many useful resources including a Resource Guide and a Neighborhood Directory.

Please visit the Great Neighborhoods website at www.greatneighborhoods.info for more information.

Neighborhood Directory

Our Neighborhood Directory allows citizens to become more involved in their neighborhood and see why other Rockford citizens love their neighborhoods too. In the directory, you’ll find 54 neighborhoods and neighborhood associations identified and some of their assets as recognized by community members themselves.

Assets that have already been acknowledged include schools, shops, museums, gardens, parks, beautiful homes, and the friendliness and involvement of neighbors. 

Please view the Neighborhood Directory located on the Great Neighborhoods website at https://www.greatneighborhoods.info/neighborhood-directory/ to learn more about the neighborhoods in the area.

 

 

 


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Grade Level Reading – Read 815 Challenge

Grade Level Reading – Read 815 Challenge

Winnebago County Chairman Haney and City of Rockford Mayor McNamara hosted a press conference on Tuesday, July 10 to launch the Read 815 Community Campaign Kick-off.

Reading proficiency, especially for 3rd graders, can show indicators for future student success. At a recent community forum facilitated by Tamarack Institute, regional challenges to 3rd grade literacy were addressed by a number of community stakeholders. The county has responded with their Read 815 initiative challenging every student in the Winnebago County to read 1 book per week between now and the start of the school year.

Chairman Haney says, creating a culture of reading in our community is critical to our long-term success. It impacts everything – from quality of life for our residents and their families to our communities’ ability to attract and retain business to public safety.”

Summer reading is just one of the strategies to improve reading scores and aligns with the collective impact movement of other efforts to improve literacy in the community.  Alignment Rockford’s is providing backbone support for the 3rd grade reading initiative which seeks to improve 3rd grade literacy across the region so that all 3rd graders will be reading at grade-level.  Existing programs, along with the County’s new challenge, will work together to create long-lasting systemic change in our student’s literacy levels.  Other initiatives are being pursued by the Rockford Public Library, Rockford Park District, and the Literacy Council.

The Read 815 challenge is supported by both Fred VanVleet (Toronto Raptors) and Dean Lowry (Green Bay Packers), along with Alignment Rockford and other collective impact partners are working to create a culture of reading in our region. Pick up a book for you or your children and start reading to be a part of that movement too!

 


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Culture of Collective Impact & 3rd Grade Reading

Last fall, the Collective Impact Project team hosted the first of a series of workshops to help our community identify to apply the collective impact approach to a complex social issue.  The team partnered with Tamarack Institute to facilitate the process and help build local capacity.  Five priority areas were considered:  poverty reduction, employment & workforce development, community safety, healthy living, and education.  Utilizing a “dotmacracy” voting process, education emerged with the most votes at the October 2017 workshop.

On June 5, 2018, we held a workshop that addressed both this Collective Impact as well as how the community can use Collective impact methods to provide excellent education to all our children from cradle to career.  Utilizing the community’s transformation plan and metrics, third-grade reading emerged as the keystone outcome for ensuring every child is reading at or above grade level by the end of third grade.

Rockford Public Schools District 205, Alignment Rockford, and NICNE (Northern Illinois Center for Nonprofit Excellence) grade level reading and other statistics, current curriculum programs in place to improve outcomes in the classroom, and challenges related to student success.  With the help of community members and other stakeholders, Sylvia Cheuy (Tamarack Institute) facilitated conversations about collaborative governance, community innovation, and community engagement. Click Here to view the PowerPoint presentation from the workshop. To learn more about this collective impact effort, please contact Alignment Rockford at admin@alignmentrockford.com.

 


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2018 Rockford Leadership Alliance

Rockford Leadership Alliance (RLA) is a focused, thematic leadership development program designed for business executives and high potential leaders in the Rockford region. RLA’s annual focus is oriented towards addressing critical leadership gaps identified in the Rockford business community.

The foundation for the experience is a six-session workshop series, starting in September of the year, complete with intense and intentional content, meaningful and actionable take-aways, skilled facilitators and peer learning.

Building on past topics of Trust & Organizational Health, the focus will turn to Accountability in 2018/2019. The program with kick off with a half-day workshop with Best-Selling Author Joseph Grenny and focus on his book Crucial Accountability.

To learn more and register please visit https://tinyurl.com/2018LeadershipAlliance


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2018 Global Leadership Summit

You have influence and the ability to positively impact your community and world. No matter where your influence is—in your family, school, work or church—when you commit to grow your leadership, everyone around you wins! Join 445,000+ people around the world for two days of world-class leadership training.

Experience this event in our region at:

ROCKFORD UNIVERSITY 5050 East State Street, Rockford, IL 61108.

Register Today at WILLOWCREEK.COM/SUMMIT or by calling 800-570-9812

 


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Leadership Rockford 2018

Designed to provide a holistic understanding of the Rockford community, Leadership Rockford is an 8-month program suitable for emerging leaders, leaders new to the community, or leaders eager to become more involved in the Rockford region. Members of the class represent a wide range of backgrounds, organizations, and levels of experience. The diversity of the class forms a dynamic cross-section of personal and professional viewpoints and perspectives.

Whether a life-long resident of the community or a newcomer, Leadership Rockford provides each participant with an in-depth understanding of the local community, including its history, opportunities and successes.

The mission of Leadership Rockford is to build leadership skills and enhance awareness of business, government and civic issues through interaction and direct involvement with business and community leaders.

To learn more and register, please visit https://tinyurl.com/2018LeadershipRockford


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Check out the new Great Neighborhoods Website!

The Great Neighborhoods project engages neighborhoods to focus on the assets that they have and to begin mapping them. Every neighborhood has attributes that make it a Great Neighborhood; things that make it great, unique, and desirable. Every neighborhood also has some challenges. We want to help recognize the good, and help you work with others to make what is good even greater, and work to resolve some of the challenges. It’s part of a mutual benefit that goes beyond an individual neighborhood and makes our community even greater. We have recently launched a website dedicated to the Great Neighborhoods project and includes many useful resources including a Resource Guide and a Neighborhood Directory. Please visit the Great Neighborhoods site at www.greatneighborhoods.info


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Última Session De Visualizacíon De Las Communidad

Última Session De Visualizacíon De Las Communidad

Jueves, 17 de mayo a las 6 PM – 7:30 PM

Sucursal Montague,
1238 S. Winnebago Street, Rockford

Necesitamos sus ideas para planificar la Biblioteca principal de vanguardia de Rockford. Por favor, venga y díganos qué quiere de su biblioteca, qué es importante para usted y qué debemos incluir para servirle mejor a usted y su familia.

Envía tus ideas por correo electrónico tellus@rockfordpubliclibrary.org


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Stakeholder Focus:  Workforce Connection

 

As you may recall, the community’s vision anticipates a condition where
– all residents are leading successful and fulfilling lives,
– our workforce is sought after, and
– our economy is agile, innovative and strong.

Connecting our residents to opportunities for education, training and employment is foundational to achieving our vision. Several community organizations are involved with this work. One such organization is the Workforce Connection.

What is the Workforce Connection? The Workforce Connection is a partnership of employment and training programs, economic development agencies and educational entities committed to providing a workforce that meets the needs of the business community. It is a regional partnership that is committed to Boone, Winnebago and Stephenson counties. Much of the funding for the Workforce Connection comes from the federal and state governments.

Among other things, the Workforce Connection evaluates and monitors training programs and manufacturers so they can adequately match candidates to jobs as well as disburse money from the Federal Department of Labor’s Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act.

Who leads the Workforce Connection? Lisa Bly became the Executive Director in December of 2017. Lisa has experience in education and workforce development and has worked for several years at the community college level in the Chicago area. She most recently served as Associate Vice President of workforce development, economic development and continuing education at Southwest Tennessee Community College in Memphis.

Where is the Workforce Connection? The Workforce Connection maintains offices in Freeport, Rockford and Belvidere.

What else should we know? “We find out what the gaps are that employers have. What are their pain points? And we bring the educational providers together. Those federal dollars are put forward to address that need,” says Bly. “It needs to be an employer-led model.”

To learn more, visit the Workforce Connection website at http://theworkforceconnection.org


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Advanced Manufacturing Fuels Transformation

Advanced manufacturing has long been an asset of the Rockford region – an asset to be nurtured and leveraged in our region’s transformation.

The region’s vision anticipates that advanced manufacturing is one of the economic drivers to bring needed resources to this region to fuel our transformation:

“We have an agile, innovative and strong economy built on the renaissance of North American manufacturing, logistics, agribusiness and our proximity to urban centers such as Chicago.”

Advanced manufacturing is already a major economic engine for the community.  The industry brings money in from outside the region for our world-class products and manufacturing services.

Many of our region’s jobs are tied to advanced manufacturing (20% by recent count).  Much of our region’s job growth in the post-recession recovery has come from manufacturing.  Since 2010 we have added 3,742 manufacturing jobs.

This growth makes the Rockford region an economic and manufacturing outlier in the state of Illinois.  24% of all Illinois manufacturing jobs added since 2010 are in the Rockford region.  Think about that.  A region with less than 3% of the state’s population has delivered almost one-quarter of the state’s post-recession manufacturing job growth.

So, where do we go from here?  How do we maintain momentum?

Advanced manufacturing is a business that needs people.  At any point, there are many unfilled positions in our region.  Getting our residents educated, trained and connected to these opportunities is key to maintaining the momentum and realizing that vision.

Key transformational projects to monitor in this area include Connecting Talent with Opportunity (a career pathway project involving local high schools and community colleges), the NIU @ RVC Engineering program (the launch of a Rockford-based engineering degree program), and the construction of a Rock Valley College Advanced Technology Center.

To learn more, please see the Project Dashboard http://transformrockford.org/project-dashboard/ or call 815-977-5840.