St. Louis Promise Zone

Ferguson Community Empowerment Center Now Open

The Project Was Aided by the New Markets Tax Credits Program

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Print Media Coverage — St. Louis Post-Dispatch | St. Louis Business Journal | St. Louis American | Riverfront TimesAssociated Press

Radio/Television Coverage — KSDK-TV | KMOV-TV | KTVI-TVKMOX Radio | KTRS RadioSt. Louis Public Radio

More than 500 people were on hand Wednesday for the grand opening of the Ferguson Community Empowerment Center.  The facility, at 9420 West Florissant Avenue, will be co-owned by the Urban League of Metropolitan St. Louis and Salvation Army.  It was aided by the New Markets Tax Credits (NMTC) program.

More than 20 dignitaries spoke at Wednesday’s event.  The list included St. Louis County Executive Steve Stenger, National Urban League President & CEO Marc Morial, Urban League of Metropolitan St. Louis President & CEO Michael McMillan, Salvation Army Midland Divisional Commander Lt. Colonel Dan Jennings and many others.

The celebration kicked-off the National Urban League’s Annual Conference, which runs through Saturday in downtown St. Louis.  Centene Corporation President & CEO Michael Neidorff and World Wide Technology Co-Founder & Chairman David Steward, who both attended the grand opening, are co-chairs of the national conference.

The Empowerment Center features more than 25 capital campaign donors, including the St. Louis Economic Development Partnership.  It will offer a variety of services, including after-school tutoring, financial assistance for rent/utilities and emotional/spiritual care for individuals re-entering society after incarceration.

The Empowerment Center sits on land which previously housed a QuikTrip.  That convenience store was sadly burned to the ground in 2014 after the tragic death of Michael Brown Jr.  More than 75 percent of the contractors and employees who built the 13,500-square-foot facility are African-American.

The NMTC program attracts private capital into low-income communities.  For more information, contact Jeff Frankel at 314-615-1613 or jfrankel@stlpartnership.com.