By Kresge Momentum (crosspost)  

Rebecca Chan, program officer for economic development at LISC and 2018 PLACES fellow, was recently featured as part of the Kresge Foundation’s Momentum  project,
which explores the stories of eight leaders whose work is creating positive changing in American cities. 

The series of stories brings to life the experiences of people
working in climate adaptation, higher education, public health, community investment and more.

Chan shared her belief in harnessing the power of the arts to bring people together.

“Chan grew up in Skokie, one of the most ethnically diverse cities in Illinois. It was there that she saw how participating in the arts helped make the community more cohesive.

‘It was usually the arts that brought people together,’ she says. ‘It transcends languages and culture and other kinds of social boundaries. I always thought about (it), but it’s really kind of manifesting in what I’m doing now.’

It was a formative insight — as was hearing about family members who had been denied opportunities because of the color of their skin. As a person of mixed race, she also sometimes encountered bias.

Chan grew determined to confront those injustices. Today, she is an emerging leader in the field of Creative Placemaking, combining her appreciation for the arts with her passion for social justice.”

Read the full piece here.

About the Author

Rebecca Chan is the program officer for economic development at LISC. She helps LISC partners across the country leverage arts, culture, and the creative economy to achieve community development outcomes. Before joining LISC in 2016, Rebecca was a fellow at Reinvestment Fund and served as a program officer for the Robert W. Deutsch Foundation. Rebecca was also Program Director for Baltimore’s Station North Arts & Entertainment District, where she worked with artists, residents, businesses, and anchor institutions to deploy a place-based revitalization strategy utilizing arts and culture as an organizing tool. Rebecca has been recognized as a Funders Network PLACES Fellow (2018), and a Fellow of the Salzburg Global Forum for Young Cultural Innovators (2015). She received her MS from the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Design, and a BA from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.