HREEO newsletter header

Quarterly Newsletter -- Fall 2012

IN THIS ISSUE

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Director's Corner

HREEO New Director

Human Rights

HUD Section 3 Program

EMS Academy

Outreach Event Highlights

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Readus Fletcher

Director's Corner

While it has been a pleasure acting as HREEO’s Interim Director, I am thrilled to see the appointment of Jessica Kingston as the new Director of HREEO. I want to thank the Advisory Committee and Mayor Coleman’s office for their diligent work in finding the new director. The director’s position requires balancing multiple responsibilities and partnerships. I am confident that Jessi will be a great leader for the Department of Human Rights and Equal Economic Opportunity.

Even though the days have grown shorter and the nights cooler, a busy purchasing and construction season persists. The department is working on new economic development initiatives with Goodwill Easter Seals. Working capital loan partnerships with the Neighborhood Development Corporation and the Metropolitan Economic Development Association have recently been signed.

In August, I appointed Sam Powers as the new Deputy Director of Contract and Analysis Services (CAS). Sam has been busy quickly getting up to speed on the numerous city and county purchasing responsibilities.  

Fall weather also means playoff baseball, and the department is excited to be a part of the future Saint Paul Saints’ Stadium in Lowertown. HREEO looks forward to working with the Saint Paul Parks and Recreation Department, the contracted businesses and construction contractors, and our various partners as we make baseball in downtown a reality.

Jessi Kingston

HREEO New Director

On September 6th, Mayor Chris Coleman announced the appointment of Jessica Kingston as the new Director of the Department of Human Rights and Equal Economic Opportunity.

“Jessi has an impressive track record of leadership in human rights and remarkable experience in procurement, both qualities that will be of tremendous value to the city and to HREEO in her new role,” Mayor Chris Coleman said. “I look forward to welcoming her to Saint Paul.”

Kingston has close to 20 years of experience working at various levels of leadership in the private sector. As a member of the Edina Human Rights Commission, Kingston has been in at the front of a range of municipal and state-wide human and civil rights issues and has provend to be a leader in the human rights arena.

“I am both honored and thrilled to become the new Director of the Department of Human Rights and Equal Economic Opportunity. I have a strong passion for the advancement of human rights. My experiences connecting and collaborating with diverse cultures have driven me toward opportunities where diversity and inclusion are the priority. I look forward to working in the City of Saint Paul and bringing my passion for diversity, equality and inclusion of all perspectives,” Director Kingston said.

Please join Mayor Coleman and the HREEO Commission in welcoming Jessica Kingston to the department. There will be a public meet and greet at the Wellstone Center located at 179 Robie Street East in Saint Paul. The event will take place on Tuesday December 4th from 5 pm to 6 pm in room 31. We hope to see you there.

Rondo Days

Human Rights

Rondo Days

On July 21st, Human Rights staff, and the EMS Academy participated in the annual Rondo Days Parade and celebrations. Rondo Days was founded in the early 1980’s to recognize the historical importance of the Rondo neighborhood. Human Rights staff joined Mayor Coleman in the annual parade from Lexington Avenue to the Martin Luther King Center on Kent Street.  

The department was on hand to spread the word about HREEO services and to showcase the EMS Academy. Human Rights manned an information booth to educate participants on the role of the Human Rights Division and answered various human rights questions from the attendees. Staff distributed the “Know Your Rights” information cards Human Rights staff created.  

Members of the EMS Academy had numerous representatives in attendance. Festival attendees were able to get a first hand look inside an ambulance from members of the EMS Academy staff. The Rondo Days event again proved to be a fun day filled with great food and sense of community.  

Saint Paul Human Rights Commission

On September 18th, the Human Rights and Equal Economic Opportunity Commission returned to session following the summer recess. The Commission is eager to begin working with the new HREEO Director, Jessica Kingston. The Commission will be hosting events throughout the community to meet and greet the new director. Individuals interested in meeting Director Kingston can join the Human Rights Commission at Neighborhood House on December 4th. The Human Rights Commission and Director Kingston will be available to discuss their agendas moving forward.  

The HREEO Commission serves as an advisory board to the department and hears discrimination complaints brought under the Saint Paul Human Rights Ordinance. Please contact the Human Rights and Equal Economic Opportunity Commission for more information or for upcoming public meetings.

HUD Section 3 Program

Working Capital Financing Available

The Section 3 program has announced two new partnerships, with local economic development organizations, designed to financially assist Section 3 business concerns. HREEO is collaborating with the Neighborhood Development Center (NDC) and the Metropolitan Economic Development Association (MEDA) on two working capital loan programs. The purpose of working capital loan programs is to assist City of Saint Paul Section 3 businesses or individuals grow and thrive in the local marketplace. Section 3 business concerns that struggle to get financing through traditional avenues should consider a Section 3 working capital loan.

Interested Section 3 businesses can apply for interest-free working capital loans administered through the Neighborhood Development Center or the Metropolitan Economic Development Association.

New Bidding and Estimating Classes

Over the past year, the Section 3 program has sponsored bidding and estimating classes for Section 3 residents and businesses through ProBid, LLC. To date, ProBid has conducted three bidding and estimating courses, serving fifteen students each.

Through the use of Probid’s comprehensive pricing-strategy training, and new bidding and estimating software, ProBid has expanded its bidding and estimating services to focus on Section 3 residents through 2012. ProBid recently announced the fourth bidding and estimating course, which began on October 4, 2012. ProBid is planning a fifth bidding and estimating course to begin later this year and wrap up by the end of 2012.

Interested Section 3 businesses and residents should visit ProBid for more information and registration materials.

EMS Academy Graduation

EMS Academy

EMS Academy Graduation

On September 4th, Mayor Chris Coleman, Deputy Mayor Paul Williams, Fire Chief Tim Butler, and EMS Academy Instructor David Page hosted graduation ceremonies for the 6th EMS Academy. Despite the warm weather, numerous EMS Academy family members and program partners turned out to congratulate the graduates. The graduating class received their EMT certifications, and Chief Butler administered the EMS Medical Technician Oath. The 6th EMS Academy is the largest graduating class to date.

The Saint Paul EMS Academy opens doors to careers in emergency medical services and firefighting for young adults from low-income households. Today, over 90 local youth have graduated from the Saint Paul EMS Academy.

Basic Life Support Transport Service

EMS Academy launches
Basic Life Support Transport Service

On July 23rd, the EMS Academy announced the launch of the new Basic Life Support (BLS) Transport Service. The non-emergency transport service is dedicated to citizens of Saint Paul and provides ambulatory transportation to a hospital, or for a specialized medical appointment.

The proceeds generated from the ambulance service are used to fund further EMS education for low income inner city youth. The BLS service shows how the EMS Academy continues to mature, and why it has become a model of urban economic development.

"Not only does the BLS Transport Service offer vocational skills training to our local youth, but it also provides a necessary medical service to the community. It is exciting to see the EMS Academy partners continue to create new ways to sustain the program and develop area youth," said HREEO Director, Readus Fletcher.

To order transportation services, Saint Paul residents can call the BLS dedicated dispatch telephone number at 651-300-2424.

Outreach Event Highlights

2012 CLUES Job Fair

On September 20th, Mayor Coleman joined the EMS Academy and Section 3 program at the 2012 CLUES Job Fair and Community Resource Expo held at the Gangelhoff Center at Concordia University. CLUES is a human services organization that advances the well-being, health, and economic prosperity of Latino individuals and families.

Over 500 individuals attended the expo. Exposition attendees had the opportunity to meet with employment recruiters looking to diversify their workforce. Local government agencies highlighted their economic development opportunities and workforce development programs. Jack Ray, Section 3 Coordinator, attended the event to explain the Section 3 program and recruit new Section 3 Residents and Businesses.

Casey Keyes, EMS Academy Coordinator, provided information on the EMS Academy and encouraged attendees to consider future EMS Academies. Over 30 attendees stopped by to learn more about the EMS Academy, and since the expo, multiple attendees have enrolled in pre-EMS Academy classes. “The event has already provided rapid recruitment for the Academy,” said EMS Academy Coordinator, Casey Keyes.

MMSDC fair

Midwest Minority Supplier Diversity Council Business Opportunity Fair

On September 27th, Vendor Outreach and Section 3 Administrators, Reggie Evans and David Gorski, were joined by CAS Senior Buyer, Sue Feuerherm, at the 36th annual Midwest Minority Supplier Diversity Council’s (MMSDC) Minority Business Opportunity Fair held at the Minneapolis Convention Center.

The MMSDC Business Opportunity Fair incorporated workshops and networking sessions, and was attended by large and small local businesses, community development organizations, and government business development agencies. To name just a few, attendees included Cargill, Xcel Energy, 3M, Shaw-Lundquist, Target, Medtronic, the Metropolitan Economic Development Association, and the Neighborhood Development Center.

Reggie, Sue, and David all spoke of the meaningful connections made during the fair. David and Reggie connected with a carpentry business and a plumber who were interested in applying for both Section 3 and CERT certification. David and Sue spoke with Loeffel Construction, who expressed interest in working with the city and also applying for CERT certification. Shaw-Lundquist representatives also stopped by the city’s booth several times to discuss business and upcoming opportunities.


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