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Pittsburgh, PA 15219






The Real Estate Co-Powerment Series Welcomes 4th Cohort for Fall 2018!

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Please join us in welcoming 16 new participants to the Neighborhood Allies/Omicelo Cares Real Estate Co-Powerment Series!

“The Real Estate Co-Powerment Series is contributing to a more equitable development ecosystem in Pittsburgh by creating access to and improving the knowledge of real estate development at the neighborhood level–ultimately reducing the fear of displacement and putting the power into the hands of the communities we serve.”

-Presley Gillespie, Neighborhood Allies President

Since the first iteration of the Co-Powerment series launched in early 2017, we have graduated 3 unique cohorts and a total of 37 students from the program. Past participants have traditionally been representative of a multitude of backgrounds and sectors ranging from community residents looking to gain knowledge of the real estate market in their neighborhoods, to CDC/CBO staff members seeking to improve their ability to serve community members, to small business owners searching for an opportunity to expand. This cohort is no less diverse. We are pleased to welcome 16 new participants to the series this Fall:

Camille Smith, Carlosa Roberts-Jackson, Christian McClendon, Denise Angell, Gabriel Gray, Gabrielle DeMarchi, Gina mcmillan, Jerome Jackson, Jordan L. Smith, LeTaj Tinker, Marcia Scott, Mica Dawkins, NaTisha Washington, Patrick Duffey, Sakinah Davis

The 4th Cohort by the Numbers:

Students learning about real estate strategies during class. Image courtesy of Omicelo

  • 56% of participants are female
  • 87% of participants work or volunteer at a Community-Based Organization
  • Percentage of participants by neighborhood (approximate):
    • 62% of participants live or work in Homewood, Lincoln-Lemington, or Garfield
    • 6% Brighton Heights
    • 6% Hill District
    • 6% West End
    • 6% Troy Hill
    • 6% Monroeville

In addition, 7 out of 8 full-time staff from Operation Better Block (OBB), as well as 2 OBB community volunteers, join the cohort this year to gain invaluable knowledge that will help them to carry out their mission – to strategize, organize and mobilize, block by block, to benefit the Homewood community – to the best of their ability.

Why join the real estate Co-Powerment Series?

“I would like to make a difference in my community by implementing my skills and knowledge that I am amassing through my educational journey.” –Marcia Scott, Hill District resident

“I want to share the information learned in the series with the rest of the Troy Hill Citizens Inc. board to ensure that we can work as efficiently as possible to get existing residential vacancies into the hands of future owner-occupants in the form of affordable housing, while also filling commercial vacancies with businesses in a way that the development is inclusive, affordable, and does not lead to displacement.” -Patrick Duffey, Troy Hill Citizens Inc. Vice Chair

“The series is relevant to the work I do here in Homewood, and I would like to grow and hone my skills so I can better serve this community.” -Gabrielle DeMarchi, Operation Better Block Community Development Coordinator

The Real Estate Co-Powerment Series is an education platform, co-created by Omicelo Cares & Neighborhood Allies, to demystify the real estate development process. Through class instruction, coaching and mentorship, our goal is to demonstrate how community members, organizations, and small business owners can participate and benefit from their own neighborhood revitalization. Course topics include real estate basics, proforma development, transactional law, tax credits, financial training, land use, green building, and more. Check out the full Fall curriculum here. For more information on the Real Estate Co-Powerment Series, visit our website


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