10 Philadelphians making change by empowering others

Portraits by Mark Likosky

Portraits by Mark Likosky

The goal of making Philadelphia a sustainable city is an ambitious one, and it requires that we have as many people as possible putting their shoulders to the wheel: We need every creative kid, every ambitious young professional and every experienced advocate who knows how to make change happen. 

We need people like the individuals on the following pages, who have dedicated themselves to strengthening our people and the places that they live, work, learn and play. They are doing it one grant at a time, one job training program at a time and one vacant lot at a time, but they all share a common trait: their work empowers other people. 

We hope that you are inspired not only by what they do, but by the idea that the best leaders are the ones who know that they can accomplish more when the people around them are strong, and that we will accomplish more together.

Philadelphia is becoming a better city every day. One of the reasons for our ascent is that our corridors of power are our neighborhood sidewalks. They are populated with extraordinary people who, from that street level vantage point, look squarely in the face of city’s significant challenges and opportunities and say to themselves, “I can make that better. Would you like to help?” 

For every one of the people in these pages, there are countless others who are also doing remarkable work. You might be one of them. If you are, we have just one thing to say: more power to you.