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Cudell and Detroit Shoreway announce “Strategic Alliance”

By Victoria Shea

 

(Plain Press, July 2018)         The boards of Cudell Improvement and Detroit Shoreway Community Development Organization announced in a letter dated June 5th that the two neighborhood organizations have formed a Strategic Alliance that will take effect on July 1, 2018.

NEWS ANALYSIS

The letter, signed by Daniel Berry, the President of Cudell Improvement and Joe Tegreene, the Chair of Detroit Shoreway Community Development Organization (DSCDO), states the Strategic Alliance “will provide high-quality community development services that leverage expertise and resources across the Cudell, Detroit Shoreway and Edgewater neighborhoods.”

“The decision to partner between Cudell and DSCDO was a thoughtful process that took over two years, during which time the organizations built trust and performed thorough due diligence,” the letter stated. “This partnership will now provide safety, economic development, neighborhood  marketing, vacant and abandoned housing redevelopment, code enforcement and community engagement.”

While neither the Cudell Improvement Board President or the Detroit Shoreway Community Development Organization Board Chair were available for comment, as they were still working together to finalize the details of the Alliance, members of the Cudell Improvement board felt strongly about the Alliance, which they hope will strengthen the organizations as a whole.

The letter states: “This collaborative model for leveraging strengths across organizations is not new in the world of non-profits or community development, but it is also uniquely tailored to the needs and culture of Cudell and DSCDO. The strategic alliance will leverage expertise and resources across our neighborhoods, while also creating synergies and cost efficiencies that afford even better service to our residents, businesses, and community members.”

The letter also explained that the Collaboration and Shared Services agreement the two boards signed states the organizations will maintain separate organizations and boards, and that they will keep physical offices in the neighborhoods.

The letter is accompanied by a series of questions and answers. The questions and answers section mentions services will continue to be provided to the Cudell and Edgewater neighborhoods. However, the section does not mention the West Boulevard neighborhood which Cudell Improvement has served for many years, where a number of members of the organization reside, and where its current office is located.

In fact, the question and answers specifically say “services will continue to be provided in the DSCDO service area and to the Cudell and Edgewater neighborhoods, north of I-90 between West 117th St. and West 85th St.” There is no mention of the West Boulevard neighborhood and the area South of I-90.

While the letter from the Cudell Improvement Board President and the Detroit Shoreway Community Development Organization Board Chair is addressed to members of the organizations, it is simply an announcement of a decision already made by the respective boards. There is no mention of a process of seeking input from the members on the decision to form a strategic alliance.

 

*Below, we have provided a copy of the letter, as well as the FAQ’s announcing the Strategic Alliance.*

June 5, 2018

Dear Members,

We are excited to announce that Cudell Improvement and Detroit Shoreway Community Development Organization (DSCDO) have entered into a strategic alliance. This new partnership will provide high quality community development services that leverage expertise and resources across the Cudell, Detroit Shoreway, and Edgewater neighborhoods. By collaborating, our organizations believe we can strengthen our ability to deliver services, raise funds, and continue the incredible momentum our near west Cleveland neighborhoods are currently experiencing.

Cudell Improvement and DSCDO recently signed a Collaboration and Shared Services agreement which takes effect on July 1st. This partnership will now provide DSCDO staff (augmented with former Cudell staff) to provide safety, economic development, neighborhood marketing, vacant and abandoned housing redevelopment, code enforcement, and community engagement to Cudell Improvement.

The decision to partner between Cudell and DSCDO was a thoughtful process that took over two years, during which time the organizations built trust and performed thorough due diligence. As our joint committee of board members and staff discussed the possibilities, we saw the shared values we both hold and also the shared assets that serve our neighborhoods and bind us together-the most obvious being the Lake Erie shoreline and Edgewater Park. We also came to believe that working together will unleash further potential for growth while maintaining the diverse and welcoming communities to which we are all committed.

This collaborative model for leveraging strengths across organizations is not new in the world of non-profits or community development, but it is also uniquely tailored to the needs and culture of Cudell and DSCDO. The strategic alliance will leverage expertise and resources across our neighborhoods, while also creating synergies and cost efficiencies that afford even better service to our residents, businesses, and community members.

Included with this letter you will also find a set of FAQs that spell out in more specifics the details of our collaborative alliance.  Our joint board committee will continue to monitor progress on our collaboration, and we look forward to reporting to our respective membership and neighborhood residents and stakeholders about the good work we will be doing on your behalf.

Sincerely,

Dan Berry, President, Cudell Improvement, Inc.

Joe Tegreene, Chair, Detroit Shoreway Comm. Dev. Org.

 

Q and A’s

Q: What is the timing of the change?

A: The Strategic Alliance will commence as of July 1, 2018. In order to create efficiencies for Cudell and DSCDO, Cudell staff will transition to DSCDO’s payroll.

Q: Does this mean that Cudell Improvement is going away?
A: No, the agreement maintains separate organizations with separate boards, Cudell Improvement and its Board will continue to operate and act as the leader in setting the strategy for community, economic, and physical development in the Cudell and Edgewater neighborhoods.

Q: Will there be an office in the Cudell neighborhood?

A: Yes, Cudell will continue to have a physical office space in the Cudell neighborhood where community meetings and office hours will be maintained.

Q:Where will Cudell and DSCDO provide services under the new alliance?

A: Under this new Alliance, services will continue to be provided in the DSCDO service area and to the Cudell and Edgewater neighborhoods, north of I-90 between West 117th St. and West 85th St.

Q: What are the benefits of this new partnership?

A:In a world of diminished funding for community development work, this agreement will maintain services for both neighborhoods and leverage shared expertise. We also believe that it will also present opportunities for new and increased funding, and promote joint development and planning that will leverage shared assets and opportunities for greater impact.

 Q:How do I contact DSCDO or Cudell Improvement?

A: The contact numbers remain the same. You can continue to reach Cudell by phone at 216.228.4383 or via email at cudell@cudell.com. You can reach DSCDO at 216.961.4242.
Q: What happens to the current Cudell Improvement Staff?

A: Most staff will continue to serve the Cudell neighborhood and shall be managed by a program director. The program director will work closely with the Directors of Cudell and the Cudell Board will continue to provide oversight and direction as to Cudell’s mission and strategies.
 

 

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