U.S. map depicting the locations of 15 local governments selected for ICMA's 2024 Economic Mobility and Opportunity Cohort.
Local governments selected for ICMA's 2024 Economic Mobility and Opportunity Cohort

Fifteen cities, towns, and counties representing diverse populations, geographies, operating budgets, and other local conditions have been selected for ICMA’s 2024 Economic Mobility and Opportunity Peer Learning Cohort and Grant Program. In addition to professional development and networking opportunities for their team leaders, the selected local governments will each receive a $20,000 grant to advance a local assessment, planning process, or program aimed at boosting upward mobility of residents. This program from ICMA is made possible by support from the Gates Foundation’s Economic Mobility and Opportunity (EMO) program.

Economic mobility refers to the ability of individuals and generations to move up the economic ladder over time, a concept often explained colloquially as “doing better than your parents.” While economic mobility is frequently associated with income, several factors can influence an individual’s economic mobility outcome, and local governments are uniquely positioned to influence conditions that make it possible for all residents and households to access opportunities and get ahead. The following local governments were selected through an application process that gauged understanding of local needs and readiness to implement EMO strategies through the cohort program and beyond:

  • Prescott Valley, AZ
  • Needles, CA
  • Redwood City, CA
  • Miami Gardens, FL
  • Newton, KS
  • Gaithersburg, MD
  • Lisbon, ME
  • Tunica County, MS
  • Thomasville, NC
  • Washington County, OR
  • La Marque, TX
  • Denton, TX
  • Charlottesville, VA
  • Danville, VA
  • Eau Claire, WI

Over the next several months, with leadership support from ICMA members, the selected local governments anticipate undertaking such activities as service gap assessments, community needs assessments, action planning, and pilot programming to address local challenges surrounding housing affordability, workforce development opportunities, household financial security, and other needs of their vulnerable populations.

ICMA will be featuring the ongoing work and findings from these local governments, as well as guidance from expert EMO practitioners and evidence-based tools and resources, in additional programming and engagement opportunities to be rolled out through our partnership with the Gates Foundation. Visit the website for the latest offerings.

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