People work on the painted mural of the tennis courts wall at Clark Park in Everett. The Bayside Neighborhood Association organized the event, and Erika Flak designed the mural. (Jay Austria)

People work on the painted mural of the tennis courts wall at Clark Park in Everett. The Bayside Neighborhood Association organized the event, and Erika Flak designed the mural. (Jay Austria)

Neighbors brighten Clark Park wall in Everett

People grabbed brushes and painted the concrete tennis court wall over two weekends at Clark Park in Everett.

Organized by the Bayside Neighborhood Association, the project was funded by a grant from the city’s Cultural Arts Commission. An effort to turn city basketball courts into murals, called Project Backboard, inspired the idea for Clark Park.

Erika Flak, a member of the Bayside Steering Committee, led the project and prepared several graphic design options and color palettes.

John and Lisa Phillips, also on the steering committee, worked with city staff to do the project, despite the grant not covering all of the costs.

Other ideas for the park are in the works, and other Bayside neighbors are asked to help and for input.

Learn more at http://baysidena.yolasite.com.

EvCC president named Aspen Fellow

Earlier this month, the Aspen Institute announced its 2021 Ascend Fellows, including Everett Community College President Daria Willis.

The group of 19 are committed to reinventing systems, unlocking potential and breaking barriers, so children and their families can thrive.

Daria Willis, Everett Community College President. (EvCC)

Daria Willis, Everett Community College President. (EvCC)

“When I was in college, I was a single mom on food assistance struggling to make it through the day,” Willis said. “As a college president, I have worked hard to expand access and opportunity for all students. I am honored to join the Ascend at the Aspen Institute to collaborate with leaders from across the country to transform systems and bring meaningful change to help families succeed.”

Each fellow is a groundbreaker in their own right, pursuing bold change on a host of challenges and opportunities families encounter, many still reeling from the pandemic and the nation’s racial reckoning, according to a press release. Fellows are spearheading efforts, from combating the erasure of Native voice and visibility, growing a movement fueled by the strength of historically undervalued communities, and working shoulder-to-shoulder with whole communities to co-design new care paradigms that give all children the opportunity to thrive, learn, feel safe, known and loved.

Over the next 18 months, fellows will inspire, challenge, and support each other as they work across sectors that all impact the prosperity and wellness of families, from reinventing systems of care and learning and unlocking capital that opens doors for economic inclusion and justice, to breaking ground with research that changes the course for policies and practices directly affecting communities.

The 2021 class joins more than 80 Aspen Institute Ascend Fellows selected for their visionary leadership and readiness to make a quantum leap forward toward breaking the cycle of intergenerational poverty for families in America.

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