Jeanne DuBois, head of Dorchester Bay Economic Development Corporation (DBEDC), a successful Boston community development corporation, will give the keynote address at a banquet to kick off the third annual SHECP symposium on Monday, Aug. 4 at the Center for Leadership and Ethics at the Virginia Military Institute. DuBois’ talk entitled “Organizing People and Money for Power and Transformation” will begin at 7 p.m. The banquet follows a day of panel discussions regarding Consortium summer interns’ experiences. Three interns served at DBEDC.
DuBois is executive director of DBEDC in North Dorchester, a diverse, low-income mixed neighborhood in Boston. Dorchester Bay has a 35-year history of economic and affordable housing development with a strong commitment to organizing.
DuBois has been at Dorchester Bay for 19 years. Under her leadership, its staff has grown from 12 to 25 people and its housing production to 935 rental units and 179 home ownership units. DBEDC has developed 209,260 square feet of commercial space through eight commercial or mixed-use projects, and it is developing two more factories. It has created more than 1,100 jobs and loaned $7 million to small and start-up businesses.
Along the nine-mile Fairmount Rail Line, DBEDC helped a coalition of community transit organizers and development corporations (CDCs) secure $200 million for four new stations, lower fares and increased service along the line. To prevent displacement near the new stations, the CDCs have 1,000 new housing units completed, in construction or in predevelopment. DBEDC also is taking the lead in commercial real estate business loans and job creation. The Fairmount Indigo Rail Line corridor has been featured by the EPA in a video posted on the White House website as part of its Sustainable Communities Partnership program.
Dorchester Bay and the City of Boston won one of the first five HUD Choice Neighborhoods grants of $20 million. The grants funded rehabilitation of a distressed, 129-unit, low-income rental housing development, helped complete a 50-business kitchen incubator and food production center that will create 150 jobs, and enabled work with local partners who are providing services and public safety organizing for local residents.
Raised in California, DuBois earned a B.A. from Stanford University and an M.A. from the University of Wisconsin, Madison. She has spent the past 36 years in community development and organizing following seven years as a high school social studies teacher. As co-chair of Roslindale Village Main Street, DuBois spearheaded a community organizing and development effort in the 1990s that created the Roslindale Village Market, which served as an anchor that turned around the business district in that Greater Boston neighborhood. DuBois’ many years of community organizing and community policing have supported Dorchester Bay’s approach to real estate development, tenant mobilizing, community security and asset management.