A little-known fact: Houston is not only the 4th-largest city in the United States (by population), it is also one of the most diverse and one of the youngest. Houston is home to 6 colleges and universities, including nationally-recognized Rice University; a world-renowned medical center; four major league sports teams; a sizeable museum district and professional opera, ballet, theater and orchestra companies (one of the few American cities to have professional permanent troupes in all of the performing arts).
City Hall Fellows deployed two cohorts to Houston between 2008-2010. These Fellows tackled projects as diverse as Houston itself. They galvanized the community around reducing local obesity rates. They created comprehensive histories of Houston’s planning and zoning regulations and Houston HOPE (an historic neighborhood reinvestment initiative). They established a Citizen Park Inspector program to improve security in and upkeep of city parks. They were on the front lines of the City’s successful response to Hurricane Ike. They also developed and implemented plans to increase diversity among firemen, to improve morale in the city’s municipal courts and parks departments and to help the city government attract and retain more young talent. The Fellows also hosted one of the first Mayoral debates of the 2009 election season – an event attended by all four leading candidates, including eventual winner Annise Parker.
“City Hall Fellows is turning some of our brightest minds to confronting head-on the civic, social and political problems we face, while teaching them the rewards of public service.”
– Mayor Bill White
A View into Public Service
– Houston Chronicle (Sept. 20, 2009)
Houston’s Next Generation of Civic Leaders Report for Duty
– City of Houston Press Release (Aug. 15, 2008)
Greater Houston Visitors’ & Convention Bureau
The Elkins Foundation
Nancy C. Brainerd
Rhoda & Allen Clamen
Christopher Elkins Joseph
Ben & Rebecca Miller