“Addressing housing is critical to our economic success,” said Interim County Administrator Cheryl Harrison-Lee. “Mr. Bright will be joining our team as we kick-off our UG Forward economic development strategic plan and comprehensive citywide plan. He will be instrumental in helping us establish a much-needed framework to ensure that our growth is complemented with quality housing stock that is accessible and affordable to our community.” 

The Unified Government of Kansas City and Wyandotte County is currently working to increase affordable housing options to address the rising housing shortage crisis and increase the city’s workforce and economic development potential as well as the wellbeing of its citizens. The FUSE Executive Fellow Housing Coordinator will help research and design a cohesive housing development strategy that will help increase housing affordability and availability, encourage housing retention in vulnerable neighborhoods, and maximize local economic impacts on building owners, residents, and businesses. 

Mr. Bright is joining the Unified Government after spending the last 15 years with the Greater Kansas City Local Investment Commission where he worked to provide independent living skills and resources for youth in foster care, coordinated caring community sites across three school districts, and developed programs and services for youth and young adults.  His fellowship is generously funded by the Kauffman Foundation.

Meet the Fellow at the Fourth Annual Housing Summit – October 19 

This is the first time that the Unified Government has partnered with FUSE to host an executive fellowship. The fellowship kicks off officially on October 31, 2022. However, Mr. Bright will be participating in the closing plenary panel at the Wyandotte County Housing Summit on Wednesday, October 19, 2022. The fourth annual event will be hosted at the HyVee Arena from 8:30AM-4:30PM and will include discussions on land trusts, tenant’s rights and responsibilities, LGBTQ+ housing, healthy and safe communities, land bank and housing choices for an aging community. There will be a reception following the panel where drinks and appetizers will be served. Learn more and register for the event here: Wyandotte County Housing Summit – Unified Government of Wyandotte County and Kansas City (wycokck.org)

About FUSE  

FUSE is a national nonprofit dedicated to increasing the capacity of local governments to engage communities, advance racial equity, and work more effectively for everyone. We believe, as communities adapt to constantly evolving challenges, that economic advancement and narrowing racial disparities is not only possible, but achievable. Over 12 months, FUSE Executive Fellows work full-time, embedded in their host agencies, pursuing project goals and accelerating systems change. FUSE provides training, executive coaching, professional development, and ongoing management support over the full term of the project. FUSE helps ensure that projects achieve their full potential for impact and provides an opportunity for projects to extend for a second year if fellows and host agencies request. 

About UG Forward 

UG Forward is an initiative to reimagine the next 25 years of the Unified Government. In 1997, the people of Wyandotte County voted to consolidate the city and county government. As we reflect on the 25th anniversary of our organization, we are looking for ways to create sustainable change through continuous improvement, economic development and quality customer service. Learn more about this initiative here: wycokck.org/UGForward  

Read the original press release here.