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City of Little Rock Public Relations
Office (501) 371-4421

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Contact(s):Robert Hopkins
Office: (501) 324-8200

Joe Elstner
(314) 444-8902

Friday, April 11, 2008

St. Louis Fed’s Little Rock Branch Sponsors Community Development Innovation Week, Hosts Two Local Events

Little Rock, AR − Robert Hopkins says that “Exploring Innovation in Community Development Week is a celebration of community development at its finest.” To prove it, Hopkins, senior executive at the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis’ Little Rock Branch, and his staff are hosting two events this week calling attention to innovations in community development and its key role in our region’s economic health.

The first, a 4:30 – 6:30 p.m event called “Innovation in the Natural State,” will honor examples of outstanding community development in Arkansas. “We’d like to single out UALR’s University District as an outstanding initiative for their exceptional work in engaging community support for what the corridor can be,” said Hopkins. “We see their role as a university in spearheading a comprehensive community development plan as a model for replication across the state.”

UALR Chancellor Joel E. Anderson said the university is “grateful to the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis for recognizing all the partners involved in revitalizing the University District. Collaboration with neighborhood residents, business owners, City of Little Rock officials, legislators, the Little Rock School District and other community leaders is vital in developing this district into a thriving place to raise families, run businesses and get an education.” Joyce Elliott, chair of the University District Partnership Steering Committee, said that “with this spirit of cooperation, we’ll achieve positive results in housing, education and public safety and attract more families to the district.”

The St. Louis Fed’s second Little Rock event this week highlighting innovation in community development features author Satish Namisan, whose latest work, “The Global Brain: Your Roadmap for Innovating Faster and Smarter in a Networked World,” heads a discussion called “Creating a Roadmap for Innovation.” “Satish will help us explore the critical role of innovation in a marketplace that’s changing rapidly,” said Hopkins. He noted that the 4:00 – 5:30 p.m. event is the first of a three-part community development speaker series in 2008 sponsored by the Little Rock Branch.

Both events will take place at the Peabody Hotel, 3 Statehouse Plaza and are free. Parking at the Stephens Building garage across the street will be provided free with validated parking tickets. For more information or to register, call Julie Kerr at (501) 324-8296 or e-mail her at


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