Neighbor Power: Building Community the Seattle Way

Paperback | November 1, 2004

byJim A. Diers

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Building on the lessons of early labor leaders, civil rights volunteers, and political activists, Jim Diers has developed his own models and successful strategies for community development. Neighbor Power chronicles his involvement with Seattle’s communities. This book not only gives hope that participatory democracy is possible, but it offers practical applications and invaluable lessons for ordinary, caring citizens who want to make a difference. It also provides government officials with inspiring stories and proven programs to help them embrace citizen activists as true partners.

Diers’s experience is extensive. He began as a community organizer in 1976, then moved on to help establish and staff a system of consumer-elected medical center councils. This led him to Seattle city government, where he served under three mayors as the first director of the Department of Neighborhoods, recognized as the national leader in such efforts.

In the 1990s, Jim Diers helped Seattle neighborhoods face challenges ranging from gang violence to urban growth. The Neighborhood Matching Fund grew to support over 400 community self-help projects each year while a community-driven planning process involved 30,000 people. Diers provides evidence that productive community life is thriving, not just in Seattle, Washington, but in towns and cities across the globe. Both practical and inspiring, Neighbor Power offers real-life examples of how to build active, creative neighborhoods and enjoy the rich results of community empowerment.

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Building on the lessons of early labor leaders, civil rights volunteers, and political activists, Jim Diers has developed his own models and successful strategies for community development. Neighbor Power chronicles his involvement with Seattle’s communities. This book not only gives hope that participatory democracy is possible, but ...

Jim Diers is the liaison to Seattle communities for the University of Washington Office of Partnerships, director of the South Downtown Foundation, and on the faculties of the UW Department of Architecture and the Asset-Based Community Development Institute.
Format:PaperbackDimensions:208 pages, 9.06 × 6.1 × 0.55 inPublished:November 1, 2004Publisher:University Of Washington PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0295984449

ISBN - 13:9780295984445

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Table of Contents

AcknowledgmentsIntroduction1. Valuing Community: The Department of Neighborhoods' Origins2. Organizing Community: Involving All Neighbors and Other Programs3. Connecting Community: Neighborhood Service Centers and District Councils4. Building Community: The Neighborhood Matching Fund5. Cultivating Community: The P-Patch Program6. Sustaining Communities: The Neighborhood Planning Program7. Celebrating Community: Neighbor Appreciation Day8. Modeling Community: Columbia City9. Replicating Neighborhood Programs10. ConclusionAppendix A: MapsAppendix B: Neighborhood Matching Fund GuidelinesBibliographyIndex

Editorial Reviews

Finally, a book sharing the 'how we did it' of Seattle's neighborhoods. Neighbor Power bursts with inspirational ideas, proven in practice, for building community. It is a must read for all students of planning and community development, local government managers and elected officials, and neighborhood leaders—in fact, anyone who cares about how we live together and create community. - Linda Campbell, Manager for City Council, Shellharbour, Australia