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10 Truths About Tackling Your Own Development

10 Truths About Tackling Your Own Development

Creating spaces and places for people is my passion. From creating beautiful downtown living spaces to the storefronts and offices where their businesses can flourish, being a developer is all about making a positive impact for others. Development can be a robust investment with a community impact return that is deeply satisfying as well as a financial return for your livelihood. Want to take on your own small scale development project? Here are my Top 10...

Main Street: The Navel of Your Heartbreaking Town

Main Street: The Navel of Your Heartbreaking Town

It’s time to take back your Main Street. Time to fight to restore it. Time to fight for its safe return. I know Main Street hasn’t been stolen, it hasn’t been whisked away in the middle of the night....

A City Is Not A Platoon

A City Is Not A Platoon

Carl Bingham never deployed overseas with his Tank unit. Most likely, because it was too close to the end of the war, but possibly because he was more valuable developing tests that certified the mental state of army personnel....

Old-School Road Trip Extravaganza! Chapter 2: California

Old-School Road Trip Extravaganza! Chapter 2: California

This is the second of a series of photo essays exploring America’s growth and investment efforts of the past. We’re surveying the Library of Congress archive of John Margolis’ images taken of “roadside places” in the US around 40...

People and Potential Before Polish and Perfection

People and Potential Before Polish and Perfection

A majority of my work is interviewing people in a community and turning their stories into social media content in the form of photo essays, videos, and podcasts.Yesterday, I interviewed six people in the City of Saginaw, Michigan. Dawn...

The Proud Places Advent Calendar

The Proud Places Advent Calendar

It’s the season of giving so why not do something that gives back to your community every day.    Even the smallest daily actions when added up can make a huge difference in your neighborhood and town. It’s easy, you’ll...

Beyond Branding: Belief, Belonging, Becoming

By John Paget & Chris Elisara, Founders of First+Main Films Let’s remember something: branding started with cows. Advertising gurus adapted the practice to brand products, and then to brand the makers of products. And now we’re told that branding...

We Need More Activists

We Need More Activists

When a dam broke and flooded my town, I was out the door to volunteer at a shelter. My volunteering led to being on calls talking about federal disaster declarations and strategizing how to help my community recover.  On...

Internal Benefits of Community Branding

Internal Benefits of Community Branding

Branding isn’t marketing When most people hear “branding” what they actually are picturing is marketing. There’s a big difference and this is where communities often go wrong. When branding is approached simply as marketing, it can and should get...

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