Ben Howery joined LCC in August of 2023 after recently completing his undergraduate in urban studies. He joins the team from the Southeast Como Improvement Association where he gained experience in community development, event coordination, and equitable engagement. Ben has a developed passion for understanding the complexities of urban space and the individual histories that make up the communities that surround him. He believes that the collaboration between residents and their community organizations is imperative in creating a long-lasting and successful impact.
Tell us a bit about yourself
Although I am originally from a small town in southern Wisconsin, I have lived in the Southeast Como neighborhood for almost four years now. I have tried my best to explore as much of the Twin Cities as possible, and have fallen in love with the abundance of local shops and restaurants. I often frequent vintage stores such as Time Bomb Vintage and Cat and the Cobra, and always enjoy finding new coffee shops and restaurants. I am also a huge fan of public displays of art and attending interesting and unique events.
What drew you to Longfellow and this position?
Since moving up to Minneapolis four years ago, I have enjoyed frequenting the Greater Longfellow neighborhood – whether that be biking along West River Parkway, grabbing a bite to eat at Sea Salt, or being a patron at one of the hundreds of local businesses – the Longfellow neighborhood has a lot to offer for young active people like myself.
During my time at the Southeast Como Improvement Association, I fell in love with the work that has been occurring within local communities. I feel that the people that make up a neighborhood are all so unique and the public history that a community presents is often inspiring and thought provoking. Having been a community organizer in the past, I have realized that our voices truly matter, and feel that with this position I have the opportunity to amplify these voices and make sure that those who need support can and will receive it.
What are your goals for this role?
While I’m still getting acclimated to the neighborhood and organization, I feel that a primary goal within my position is to be aware of and listen to the needs of local residents and businesses and find ways to support them. I would like for people to feel that LCC is a resource that they can utilize with ease and comfort. Another goal of mine is to ensure that residents and businesses are informed of the programs and assistance that are available to them - making sure individuals have access to information that may be helpful to them is a top priority.
What value does LCC bring to the community?
LCC focuses on needs and issues that are specific to our community. We have worked to engage residents and local business owners to work together in effort to reach common ground and enact change. LCC has also worked to provide several programs that look to offer assistance to community members such as tenant outreach, housing development, and environmental justice. LCC hopes to empower, engage, and work towards the overall betterment of people living within our community.
Contact Ben at Ben@longfellow.org.
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