Know How To Transform Louisville’s Downtown? Apply To Be A Bingham Fellow

Applications for the 2022 Class of Bingham Fellows have opened. They are being accepted through Friday, Oct. 29. The applications can be found at the Leadership Louisville website.

The Bingham Fellows is a group of local leaders who are given the task of finding solutions to issues of importance within our community. The 2022 Topic will be: Moving Downtown Forward: Adapt and Reinvent. 

From a press release: 

“The Bingham Fellows program is the advanced leadership program of the Leadership Louisville Center. Created in 1988 through a $500,000 endowment from the Mary and Barry Bingham Sr. Fund, the Fellows are social entrepreneurs who have the imagination and talent needed to gather critical resources and create social change. Side by side with peers, participants work to develop dynamic and innovative solutions to our community’s most pressing challenges. The 2022 cohort will be the 30th class, and the Bingham Fellows have had an impressive track record of providing community issues with visibility and momentum.”

To find out more about the Bingham Fellows, Leadership Louisville is hosting two information sessions. 

  • Wednesday, Oct. 13, 5-7 p.m., in-person at Leadership Louisville Center, 707 W. Main St.
  • Wednesday, Oct. 20, 8:30-9:30 a.m., virtual meeting via Zoom

Attendance is free. RSVP here

The upcoming program year begins in January 2022 and ends in January 2023. For more information, contact Aimee Jewell at 561-0458 or ajewell@leadershiplouisville.org.

The ideas behind the topic involve seeing downtown as a place where people want to live, move and for visitors to fall in love. At the heart of this is inclusion. Downtown needs to work for the people of Louisville but for those who come here from elsewhere.

The Bingham Fellows will look at models of other cities and how they have reinvigorated their downtowns and create a plan for Louisville. 

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From the press release: 

 “Louisville’s downtown has been disrupted and we now have the opportunity to leverage the dramatic changes we’ve faced to adapt and reinvent our city center. How do we use what the past two years have taught us, the gaps it has uncovered, and the changes it has caused, to redefine what downtown can be and do for Louisville? How can we reclaim and expand the vibrancy that was growing before the pandemic – vitality fueled by amazing new parks, incredible museums and arts institutions, high-end sports facilities, memorable hotels, world-class restaurants, and of course, bourbon?

 Crisis brings the rare opportunity to rebuild, and Louisville’s downtown has been one of the areas most impacted. We will use this moment to examine our urban core and build a better backbone, allowing our city to grow both economically and socially. We will explore opportunities to adapt and evolve:

  •         How do we increase foot traffic, not just during games and working hours?
  •         How can we repurpose vacant office space as the ways we work have evolved?
  •         How do we make downtown a people-centric place, integrated into the lives of our residents?
  •         How do we support locally owned small businesses and strengthen our community’s local assets?
  •         How can we improve mobility, reduce traffic, and expand pedestrian infrastructure?
  •         How might we create corridors to better connect and increase access to our downtown amenities?
  •         How can we better address homelessness, prioritize public safety, and turn around perception?
  •         How will we invest as we rethink the ways in which downtown can serve its people?”

 The pandemic and social change have impacted the local landscape. Considering all of these things, the new class of Bingham Fellows have a challenge ahead.

If you are interested in the program and want to work on creating a new Louisville for all, apply!

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About the Author

Know How To Transform Louisville’s Downtown? Apply To Be A Bingham Fellow

Erica Rucker is LEO Weekly’s Arts & Entertainment Editor. In addition to her work at LEO, she is a haphazard writer,  photographer, tarot card reader, and fair to middling purveyor of motherhood. Her earliest memories are of telling stories to her family and promising that the next would be shorter than the first. They never were. You can follow Erica on Twitter, but beware of honesty, overt blackness and occasional geeky outrage.

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