Reinventing Our Communities (ROC) Cohort Program


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Cohort Members

Chester County Community Foundation

Chester County Commissioners

  • Hon. Marian Moskowitz, Josh Maxwell, & Michelle Kichline
  • Robert (Bobby) J. Kagel, County Administrator, rkagel@chesco.org, 610.344.6100

West Chester NAACP

Chester County Economic Development Council

Chester County Chamber of Business & Industry

Chester County Department of Community Development

Chester County Funders

WCU Center for Social & Economic Policy Research

  • Dr. Jeffrey L. Osgood, Jr., Deputy Provost, Professor of Public Policy & Administration & Associate Director, josgood@wcupa.edu, mpa@wcupa.edu, 610.436.2438 
  • Office of Research & Sponsored Programs, research@wcupa.edu, 610.436.3557 
  • Nicole Bennett Ph.D., Vice Provost for Research & Creative Activity, Interim Director of the Research Institute of Environment, Energy, & Economics, nbennett@wcupa.edu

Project Organizer (consultant): Hugh Bleemer, hbleemer@yahoo.com, 484.678.0169


Selected communities will participate to frame, contextualize, and organize around small business equity in their community.

Participation is a 10-month engagement, from June 2021 to March 2022, in four core areas: (1) racial equity training, (2) community and economic development training, (3) technical assistance, and (4) development of a racial equity plan.

The 2021 Program will focus on centering racial equity in small business support to build strong regional economies. Trainings will include:

  • Racial equity in the COVID-19 pandemic recovery
  • Financing and access to quality credit for small business owners of color
  • Building strong, equitable commercial corridors and regional economies
  • Small business ownership as household and community wealth building
  • Supporting transitions from sole proprietorships to community employers 

Each community cohort will be led by a community foundation committed to building cross-sector partnerships to support minority-owned small businesses. Cohorts will meet biweekly for the first five months of the program and then meet on an as-needed basis to participate in technical assistance and develop their racial equity plan for the second half of the program.

Visit the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia website for more information: www.philadelphiafed.org.