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Meet Norfolk’s Resilient City Builders
The doers and makers who call Norfolk home are driving the success of Norfolk’s resilience strategy. We hold up these individuals as inspirational examples of what Norfolk is all about—committed and talented people who work together to build resilience in our community. Find videos about some of these resilience builders below and learn how they are making Norfolk an international model of resilience.

After you learn more about these amazing people and their contributions to our community, help us add to our growing list of Norfolk’s Resilient City Builders. Contact the Resilience Office to let us know about other people in our community who are building Norfolk’s resilience.

Help us add to our list of Norfolk’s Resilient City Builders! Contact Norfolk's Resilience Office and let us know of any in our community who are building Norfolk’s resilience.

Resilient City Builders 

Mason Andrews, Cheryll Sumner, Skip Stiles, and Mujde Erten-Unal worked with their community and students to develop innovative water management practices that curtail flooding in the historic coastal neighborhood of Chesterfield Heights.
Drew Ungvarsky is spearheading the Downtown Norfolk Council’s Vibrant Spaces program, connecting startup retail businesses with street-level spaces at a deep discount.
Dave Richards launched We Feed Norfolk, enlisting local Boy Scout troops 24 and 1 to collect food donations from area residents using reusable grocery bags and an innovative smartphone app.
Antipas Harris is helping to start Bank On Norfolk, through which local churches will connect unbanked or under-banked residents to free or low-cost starter bank accounts and financial education.
Karen Scherberger and Mary Miller created the Norfolk Collaboratory, a crowdsourcing approach to formulate a brand message architecture that is helping Norfolk’s organizations advance a more seamless image of what makes Norfolk a special place.
Tom McNeilan connected the city with Dale Morris from the Royal Netherlands Embassy and David Waggonner, a New Orleans-based architect, to bring the Virginia Dutch Dialogues’ “Life at Sea Level” workshop to Norfolk.
Jim Redick brings together government, the private sector, nonprofits, the faith community, higher education, and the military to build collective efforts in addressing all threats, including sea level rise.
Rodney Jordan
Rodney Jordan In Park Place, a group of residents led by current School Board Chair Rodney Jordan partnered with the city to pursue a resident-driven, healthy neighborhood approach to neighborhood revitalization and competitiveness. 

The effort led to the creation of the Greater Park Place Visioning and Engagement Process (VEP), which was the impetus for the city’s Neighbors Building Neighborhoods initiative. 

The VEP is a resident-led revitalization effort in which neighbors help neighbors create and implement a vision for growing their neighborhood by focusing on its strengths. 

By connecting neighbors around a vision of growing healthy internal and external partnerships, the residents of Park Place are creating a neighborhood where families will want to live, work, and play in Norfolk.
Marty Kaszubowski
Marty Kaszubowski has been working to build a support system for entrepreneurs for over a decade. His latest venture is Old Dominion University’s Norfolk Innovation Center, opening on Boush Street in downtown Norfolk. 

The center connects new businesses to mentors, capital, learning, legal advice, marketing, and financial information. 

The goal is to help new businesses grow the region’s economy. Marty believes connecting people to people, people to resources, and people to new ideas is the secret sauce for entrepreneurs. 

James Rogers

James Rogers and Norfolk's Department of Neighborhood Development are supporting community-led efforts to strengthen the city. 

Through the soon-to-be-launched Rent Ready program, James and his team will connect landlords and renters to information that improves outcomes for both.
 

Landlords who complete the Rent Ready Academy, sign up for the Emergency Notification Database, and pass a quality assessment inspection are eligible to receive a Rent Ready score.

They will also be highlighted on a Rent Ready properties website that assists prospective renters with selecting quality rentals, and will receive services and resources to equip them to attract more renters.

Through the Rent Ready Academy Renters Track, renters learn about their rights and responsibilities and how to be a great resident of one of Norfolk's neighborhoods.