Along with unparalleled economic uncertainty comes virtually unprecedented potential
Boston, MA (Vocus) January 16, 2009
Massachusetts Lieutenant Governor Tim Murray marked the birthday of Martin Luther King, Jr. today by highlighting the education and workforce reforms that have helped more African-Americans and others in Massachusetts become educated and gainfully employed in the past 25 years.
Lieutenant Governor Murray's keynote address at Jobs for the Future's sixth annual "Making a Difference" breakfast urged more than 100 leaders in government, education, philanthropy, business, and communities to build on these successes.
"Education and workforce development are always critical, but they are particularly important during these difficult economic times," Murray said today. "We need to think creatively about ways to ensure that people of all ages have the skills necessary to fill the jobs that enable them to support themselves and their families."
"Along with unparalleled economic uncertainty comes virtually unprecedented potential," said Jobs for the Future CEO Marlene Seltzer. "There is no reason to delay our work to ensure that all Americans can have a better future."
The "Making a Difference" forum on how Massachusetts communities can improve through the 3 "I"s: Innovation, Investment, and Infrastructure; the ability to identify what works and provide it with the resources and networks to grow and spread.
"Innovation really takes look at your world in a different way," said Clark University President Dr. John Bassett. "I'd like to challenge all of us here to continue generating ideas with an entrepreneurial spirit more often associated with the private sector than the public and nonprofit sectors."
"Smart investments are also key to bringing real change. There are so many high-potential inner city small businesses and entrepreneurs across the U.S.," says NextStreet Financial CEO Ronald Walker. "Strategic advice and growth capital from organizations like ours can help them take off."
"My best advice for expanding your services is reaching out to new and different funders," said Juan Vega, executive director for Centro Latino de Chelsea. "In these tough economic times, there are going to be cutbacks. Don't allow your great work's future to hinge on one or two contracts coming in. Who knows what next month will bring."
Through research, analysis, action, and advocacy, Jobs for the Future develops promising education and labor-market models, expands successful models in communities across the country, and shapes the policy environment that enables American families and companies to compete in a global economy.
For more information on JFF and the "Making a Difference in Our Community" breakfast, visit http://www.jff.org.
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