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Community Services and Revitalization Newsroom

Louisville a Top City for Young People

Wednesday October 12, 2011

Media Contacts:
Debbie Belt, 574-6587
Phil Miller, 574-1901

Louisville Named One of the Nation’s
100 Best Communities for Young People

Win marks city’s fifth year earning award

Louisville has again achieved national recognition as one of America’s Promise Alliance’s 100 Best Communities for Young People presented by ING. The competition recognizes communities across the country that focus on reducing high school dropout rates and providing service and support to their youth.

This year’s competition marks the fifth cycle of the award -- and Louisville is one of only 22 cities to be recognized all five times.

Louisville was selected, in part, for the innovative partnerships and programs shared with Louisville Metro Government, Jefferson County Public Schools (JCPS), Metro United Way, local businesses and non-profit service providers. These collaborations share a commitment to improving local education programs to support young readers, college preparation initiatives and youth volunteering. In addition to providing “Freshmen Academies” at all 22 comprehensive high schools in Louisville, allowing students to learn in smaller environments around five career themes, Louisville’s 55,000 Degrees program supports the city’s long-term, targeted plan to raise education attainment by 40,000 bachelor’s degrees and 15,000 associate’s degrees by 2020.

“It’s exciting that Louisville is again one of the best communities for young people – but we’ve got work to do – because we want to be the very best,” said Mayor Greg Fischer. “Whether it’s a child just starting kindergarten or an adult deciding to return to college to finish their degree, we want Louisville to be a city of lifelong learners, where our citizens of all ages discover joy in learning.”

“In a nation where 7,000 students drop out of high school every day, we hope Louisville’s initiatives inspire other communities across the nation to take action to solve the challenges facing their young people,” said Marguerite W. Kondracke, America’s Promise Alliance president and CEO. “Louisville is especially deserving of this recognition due to their efforts to ensure that their young people graduate high school and go on to lead healthy, productive lives.”

On Oct. 12, at 12 p.m., Kondracke will join America’s Promise Alliance Chair Alma Powell and ING Foundation President Rhonda Mims at the Newseum in Washington, D.C., to officially announce the 100 winning communities in a live webcast. In Louisville, representatives from Metro United Way, Louisville Metro Government, JCPS, community-based and faith-based organizations, and other community members will gather for a “Watch Party” at Metro United Way’s Community Room at 334 East Broadway.

“The issues surrounding youth education and success are of vital importance to ING”, said Mims. “Our ongoing support for 100 Best underscores our commitment to the cause and the value we place on recognizing communities that produce measurable results for youth.”

For more information about this award and a list of complete winners, visit

About 100 Best
First held in 2005, 100 Best honors communities large and small, rural and urban, that are making progress to help young people achieve their potential, which includes earning a high school diploma, securing a good job, and playing an active, productive role in America’s economic vitality. This year, more than 300 communities in 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico were nominated for this award.

All communities entering the 100 Best competition completed a rigorous application where they provided details on how their existing programs and initiatives help deliver the Five Promises — resources identified by the Alliance as being critical to the development of healthy, successful children: caring adults; safe places; healthy start; effective education; and opportunities to help others.