National League of Cities Launches New Economic Inclusion Program for Southern Cities

November 18, 2021 - (2 min read)

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The National League of Cities (NLC) is launching a new initiative to support cities in the Southeast to help local leaders implement economic inclusion strategies that close racial economic equity gaps. The “Southern Cities Economic Inclusion” (SCEI) initiative is a partnership between NLC, the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, the Annie E. Casey Foundation, and the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.   

“NLC is proud to partner with these philanthropic organizations to address the lingering racial wealth and economic gap, particularly in the South,” said NLC CEO and Executive Director Clarence E. Anthony. “The last year has shown that cities and local leaders must be intentional about reducing racial inequities plaguing their communities. The pandemic exposed and spotlighted significant gaps in access and services for Black, Indigenous and Communities of Color and this initiative offers an opportunity to address these gaps.”

Through this initiative, NLC will work with local leaders of Southern cities to support economic growth for residents and businesses of color. NLC will establish two networks that allow leaders to learn from each other’s experiences, while acquiring guidance from experts and deepening the capacity among Black residents and businesses.   

“The Institute for Youth, Education and Families (IYEF) is excited to partner with the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, the Annie E. Casey Foundation, and the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta to implement the SCEI program. The challenges of an international pandemic, racial reckoning, and economic upheaval have highlighted an understanding for true economic inclusion. We believe that this program will significantly address economic gaps within communities and build a framework for economic resilience,” said NLC Senior Executive and Director of IYEF Dr. Robert Blaine. 

Learn more about the Southern Cities Economic Inclusion initiative


The National League of Cities (NLC) is the voice of America’s cities, towns and villages, representing more than 200 million people across the country. NLC works to strengthen local leadership, influence federal policy and drive innovative solutions. Stay connected with NLC on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram.