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Catalyst Miami, Florida Policy Institute to Convene Fourth Annual Poverty Solutions Summit

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: November 26, 2018

CONTACT: Sonia Lindell, 407.988.5443 or [email protected]

                      Molly Delahunty, 786.414.1292 or [email protected]


Event will bring together Miami residents and advocates and experts on health care access, climate resilience, job creation and other topics

MIAMI, FL – Catalyst Miami and the Florida Policy Institute are hosting the fourth Poverty Solutions Summit on Dec. 1, 2018 to identify equitable, collaborative, and sustainable solutions to South Florida's greatest challenges, including building climate resilience, job creation, and ensuring access to healthcare and affordable housing.

The event will be held from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Miami Dade College’s InterAmerican Campus.

The summit will bring together local residents, community leaders and advocates, issue-area experts and elected officials to discuss community-driven approaches and policy best practices that could help to reduce the 16.6 percent poverty rate in Miami-Dade County.

The day will open with a plenary session that illustrates how poverty is made up of many interconnected, complex issues--this will set up the breakout sessions where attendees will hear from expert panels on topics including Medicaid expansion, worker cooperatives, community land trusts, and models for resilience hubs. Following the panels, attendees will discuss in groups how these models could best be adapted in Miami’s current landscape.

The keynote address will be delivered by Dr. Darrick Hamilton during the lunch plenary session, where he will provide a first look at some of his latest research to combat economic insecurity in Miami in conjunction with a larger national study called the Color of Wealth. The closing session of the summit will feature state elected officials who will respond to the solutions proposed throughout the day and provide perspective on how policy can support the proposed solutions.

Sponsors of the event include the Ford Foundation and JPMorgan Chase & Co.

Speakers include:

  • Dr. Darrick Hamilton, professor of economics and urban policy at The New School and incoming executive director, Kirwan Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnicity at The Ohio State University
  • Dr. Robert Bullard, distinguished professor of urban planning at Texas Southern University and award-winning environmental justice author
  • Todd Leverette, cooperative conversions program manager at the Democracy at Work Institute
  • Andy Posner, founder & CEO of the Capital Good Fund
  • Jonathan Schleifer, executive director of The Fairness Project
  • Mireya Eavey, chief workforce officer at the Greater Sarasota Chamber of Commerce/CareerEdge Funders Collaborative
  • Laura Hunter, senior vice president, program planning and business development for Jackson Health System
  • Sheri Colas-Gervais, vice president, Economic Development and Urban Initiatives at Miami-Dade Beacon Council
  • Al Dotson Jr., managing partner-elect at Bilzin Sumberg
  • Natalie Castellanos, director of policy and public affairs at Health Foundation of South Florida


Government officials attending include:

State Sen. Annette Taddeo

State Rep. Nicholas Duran

State Rep. Kionne McGhee

State Rep.-Elect Vance Aloupis

Commissioner Daniella Levine Cava, Miami Dade County, District 8

Commissioner Eileen Higgins, Miami Dade County, District 5

James Murley, chief resilience officer, Miami Dade County

Hernan Guerrero Applewhite, housing development coordinator, City of Miami



Catalyst Miami believes everyone deserves a healthy and financially secure life; but currently, two in three families in Miami don’t have enough savings to weather a financial emergency of any kind. For over 20 years, Catalyst Miami has committed to empowering residents to build better futures by providing family economic security programs, developing leadership and civic engagement, and building coalitions to address poverty.

The Florida Policy Institute is a nonprofit, nonpartisan and independent organization dedicated to advancing state policies and budgets that improve the economic mobility and quality of life for all Floridians.


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