GovLove Episode 32: A Citizen Champion

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We created GovLove Podcast to tell local government stories ' those stories of people working hard every day to build their cities. In particular, we hold a special, beating place in our hearts for those stories of those citizens and residents of cities who exercise voice, utilize technology, and garner neighborhood energy to build stronger communities. On this episode ofGovLove, we have one such citizen: and her name is Nadine Herring.

By day, Nadine is a small business owner, by day AND night, Nadine is a champion community advocate for her neighborhood nestled in New Haven, CT. Alone she is a force to be reckoned with, but one of her true strengths has been in bringing her neighbors in to work together for causes and projects too big for any one individual.

Top Nadine Quotes (can #NadineQuotes become a hashtag?):

"I love my city. I love my neighborhood. I grew up here. I know how it was. I know what it can be. I see the potential every single day. It's why I chose to buy a home here. It's why I chose to raise our daughter here. It's why I chose to buy a home where my parents could sit out on our porch...The most beautiful thing to me is to see [my Dad] sit on the porch and relax, and have people walk down the street and say 'Hi, how are you doing?'. It just builds that sense of community."

"For the people that say 'Oh New Haven is this or that' or 'The inner city is blahblahblah': no, it's not...New Haven is a wonderful place to live, to raise a family, to be a part of a diverse community. I love my city."

"I think the most important thing in bringing the [Management Team] together and making us as strong as we are is listening to everyone's concerns ' making sure everyone has a voice and everyone is heard."

"[Whalley/Edgewood/Beaver Hills neighborhood] is a very diverse neighborhood and I think that's one of the things that sets us apart."

"Before using SeeClickFix, I encountered the same problems that other people had with the city where you try call down to City Hall, you try to find somebody in a deprtment who a. knows what they are doing; b. will listen to you; andc. follows up to make sure things get done. And it was really frustrating trying to do that...When SeeClickFix came along and right away you put things up there and not only is your voice heard but you put things up there and three other people are like:'You know what? That does need to be addressed."

"Not only is it a place to report issues but my experience with SeeClickFix is that it's a place to build relationships and network through SeeClickFix...from a problem that was posted on SeeClickFix I was able to build a relationship with someone in a different part of the city that otherwise I would have never known."

"The power of SeeClickFix to me is more than just a spot to report issues but it is also a place to build a relationships with people throughout the city...to bring our voices together to get things done, to hold people accountable."

"For most residents in the city they think of City Hall as the impenetrable force...who is going to listen to me? How do I get in touch with somebody? Who is going to care about those issues going on in my neighborhood?...But with SeeClickFix you put an issue there and it's almost immediately acknowledged by a city official. That's unheard of. That doesn't happen...SeeClickFix makes City Hall more personable, more friendly."

"[SeeClickFix] makes City Hall seem like they are listening, because they are."

"SeeClickFix is beautiful because it's that public follow-up. Public. It's not just youand whoever happens to answer the phone that day. It's you and the thousands of people on SeeClickFix every single day looking at what's being done. That's very powerful."

"You have the ability to go back and say 'thank you' to people in the city, which I think they really appreciate...and everyone can see it. And that makes everyone feel good."

"[SeeClickFix] has shown me that there are people in City Hall who care: who care about the city, who care about their neighborhoods and want to see things fixed and addressed."

"[SeeClickFix] has also shown me which I don't think enough people appreciate, inlcuding myself, that they have a loooot of stuff to do down at City Hall. They are short-staffed, they are doing the best they can. And there are some dedicated and talented people there."

Thank you all for listening to GovLove Podcast powered by SeeClickFix and ELGL (@ELGL50)!

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GovLove is hosted and produced by SeeClickFix (@SeeClickFix) and Engaging Local Government Leaders (@ELGL50). ELGL is a network of local government folks with a passion for connecting, communicating and educating. Learn more about ELGL atwww.elgl.organd SeeClickFix atgov.seeclickfix.com.