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Community Convention Culminates in Three #BigBoldIdeas

Community Convention Culminates in Three #BigBoldIdeas

Member News Event Partnership for a Sustainable Community Connect Advocate

175 community delegates gathered, selected, and united around a youth masterplan, workforce development and innovation, and more affordable housing as top priorities for collective action.

Chapel Hill, NC: On November 7, 2019, the Big Bold Ideas Steering Committee convened 175 diverse delegates from across the Greater Chapel Hill-Carrboro Community for the Big Bold Ideas Community Convention, a milestone event in the collective goal setting venture called Big Bold Ideas.
Through the four-hour convention, the community gathered, selected, and united around the following three big bold priorities for collective action in the years ahead:
  1. Creating a youth masterplan (Pre-K, grade level reading, achievement gap, family engagement, teacher recruitment, racial equity, and others);  
  2. Prioritizing workforce development and an innovation hub; and
  3. Developing substantially more affordable housing.

“Together, during the Big Bold Ideas Community Convention, we imagined our shared future and successfully selected three ideas that will serve as our strategic action plan in the years ahead,” said Creighton Blackwell, Vice President of Corporate Affairs at Coastal Credit Union and Chair of the Big Bold Ideas Steering Committee.   

At the Big Bold Ideas Community Convention, delegates reviewed and discussed the 500+ ideas submitted through a community-wide idea generation and sorting process, winnowed the ideas down through a world café activity, and then built and improved the ideas through a collaborative poster session followed by several rounds of pitching and voting. The convention’s open, democratic process was enhanced with expert facilitation from Zemo Trevathan of The Aligned Team.
The Delegates were charged with selecting Big Bold Ideas that met three criteria: 1) ambitious, measurable, and accomplishable; 2) objectives they are willing to work on but cannot accomplish alone; and 3) have a lasting and positive impact on our community.  The ideas that did not advance through the convention process were put into a “Not For Today” pile. Fourteen of those ideas were selected as side projects.

Going forward, the final three ideas will advance to the Steering Committee and the Chamber’s professional staff to create defined and actionable objectives, perform research, and identify funders and champions. The implementation plans for each Big Bold Idea will be discussed at the next Big Bold Ideas Steering Committee meeting and presented at The Chamber’s Annual Meeting on January 31, 2020.
The convention was held in the Friends and Family Hall at St. Thomas More in Chapel Hill from 1-5pm. Invited delegates included all Steering Committee members, all elected officials in Orange County, and nominated and self-nominated community members, including business leaders, community activists, ministers, local artists, and college and high school students.


About Big Bold Ideas: Big Bold Ideas is a collective goal-setting venture designed to convene the Greater Chapel Hill-Carrboro Community around three big ideas. Done well, Big Bold Ideas will become a focused strategic action plan that guides our shared work for the years ahead and will make a substantial and positive impact on our community. Forty community leaders from diverse backgrounds and all sectors are working together to shape and guide this powerful new community improvement initiative. The Big Bold Ideas Steering Committee members include Mayors and business owners; community activists and artists; and civic, religious, and social leaders. Initial funding and support was provided by Atma Hotel Group, Bank of America, Bold Construction, Coastal Credit Union, East West Partners, Fidelity Investments, and ShineBiG.
About The Chamber For a Greater Chapel Hill-Carrboro: The Chamber is a membership organization that serves and advances the business interests of Greater Chapel Hill, including the Towns of Chapel Hill and Carrboro as well as southern Orange, northern Chatham, and southwest Durham counties. The Chamber's network is growing with nearly 1,000-member enterprises that employ more than 95,000 workers throughout the region. Together with its network, The Chamber is committed to building a sustainable community where business thrives. Members count on The Chamber to help them connect, promote, advocate, and save money.

Contact: Katie Loovis, Vice President for External Affairs, The Chamber, 919-696-0781 (m), 
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