ULI Philadelphia Blog

WLI December Meeting Recap

The December meeting of the Women’s Leadership Initiative of ULI Philadelphia brought together two women working to make Philadelphia a green, thriving economy: Anna Shipp, Executive Director of the Sustainable Business Network (SBN) and Jamie Gauthier, Executive Director of the Fairmount Park Conservancy (FPC). The conversation was moderated by Allison Shapker (Director of Capital Projects with FPC and our WLI Community Outreach chairperson). It quickly became clear that both organizations have big plans for Philadelphia in 2019 and that they understand the importance of listening.

FPC exists to champion Philadelphia’s parks. Jamie spoke of the many creative ways that FPC listens to the communities near the parks, understanding that parks are for the people and that not all people are heard the same way. FPC held story hours, arts festivals and games and many other ways to get the community involved in reimagining the civic commons.

What’s next for FPC? Check out their website for upcoming events, arts & culture, and ways to volunteer and look for some of their exciting capital projects like Centennial Commons at West Fairmount Park and FDR Park in South Philadelphia.

SBN is committed to the success of businesses that are improving their social and environmental impact in a variety of ways, including political advocacy and programs and initiatives that foster collaboration in the SBN community. Anna spoke about an important tool called an Impact Assessment, which is a free and confidential series of questions (open to SBN members and non-members) designed to help you learn what it takes to build a better business for workers, community and the environment.

Anna said that SBN has learned a lot by listening to its members as they evolve their business practices. SBN’s next steps are to continue to advocate for fair and sustainable legislation such as green, clean stormwater management and removing obstacles for small business start-ups. Attend a program, donate or find and support a local independent business in the SBN Directory.

The mission of WLI is to raise the visibility and number of women leaders in ULI and the real estate industry. Our council endeavors to promote that mission by offering opportunities for skills building, networking and community engagement. For more information on WLI contact Kelly.Cary@uli.org or click here.


This article was contributed by Charlene Drake. Charlene is an Environmental Redevelopment Specialist at Langan Engineering and one of the Co-Chairs for ULI Philadelphia WLI.

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