ABOUT NSBN: Endorsements

"With the help of New Schools Better Neighborhoods, the promise of schools as centers of neighborhoods will turn from a dream into a reality."

- Antonio R. Villaraigosa
Mayor, City of Los Angeles

"I think that NSBN is proving, in neighborhood after neighborhood, the benefits that can come from cooperation and a commitment to the effective use of resources."

- Bill Bogaard
Mayor, City of Pasadena

"As a board member and community advocate, I have seen firsthand the work of NSBN in helping communities and public agencies to plan smarter neighborhood-centered, family-friendly educational facilities for our children and families. NSBN’s professionalism and commitment to authentic community involvement has helped develop strong relationships among all stakeholders."

- Monica Garcia
Board Member, Los Angeles Unified School District

"What is exciting about the process that NSBN provided us with was the opportunity to include other folks that generally cannot afford to come and join us in that conversation.  Through that collaborative effort, the picture expanded."

- Ken Knott
Assistant Superintendent, Lennox School District

"NSBN has a proven track record of successfully leveraging school, parks, housing, etc. with capital investments (bond and program resources) to assure the creation of healthy spaces and places for children and families to utilize such services in our county’s most needy neighborhoods."

- David Fleming
Found Board Member, Children’s Planning Council; Incoming Chair, Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce

"One thing that NSBN has done very effectively is to open people’s eyes and show them a way different from the old parochial one.… NSBN expanded my thinking. It caused me to look at our assets differently and therefore meet the needs of a larger community, not just my student community or their parents, but the community at large… With NSBN’s help, we reached out to the surrounding community and sponsored three charrettes. . . . I guess somewhere around 75 to 100 people participated, including officials from the city of Hawthorne. I think the community felt honestly and sincerely engaged and walked away with an understanding that their input had direct impact on the outcome of the project."

- Dr. Joseph Condon
Superintendent, Lawndale School District

"We know we needed help to avoid being relocated out of Boyle Heights; and we knew that we needed to reach out to some of the civic organizations in the community, like NSBN, to assist us. NSBN responded quickly, positively, and very professionally, thank God. [The schematic relocation plan developed by NSBN is] a marvelous plan, and it far exceeds our expectations.  We were originally thinking just about how to replace the childcare center, but there are some possibilities here that would enable us to provide more services and have a larger presence."

- Rev. Jim Conn
United Methodist Ministries

"When an organization such as NSBN, who has its own core competencies, comes along,   . . . it’s not only to the advantage of the county and providers to use that expertise, but it also lets us leverage our own dollars."

- Gary Mangiofico, Ph.D.
Chief Operations Officer, Los Angeles Universal Preschool

"We have floated around the idea of how great it might be to have a health clinic on our campus, and how awesome it would be to able to build a new building.  And then NSBN came along and helped us to make some real concrete plans."

- Andy Johnsen
Former Co-Director, Santa Monica Boulevard Community Charter School

"We exist within a very high-need, low-service area and our work with NSBN, an organization uniquely focused on building pre-K seats in underserved neighborhoods, presents an opportunity for us to see if we can add capacity where capacity is needed."

- Michael Bishop
Assistant Superintendent, Paramount School District

"I am very supportive of working collaboratively with the city and with MTA, but I think that you almost need a third, non-government party like NSBN to help bring all of these agencies together.  Public entities are sometimes so focused on our own missions that we need someone else to get us all together and illuminate the possibilities."

- Jose Huizar
Councilmember, City of Los Angeles; Former President, Los Angeles Unified School District Board of Education

"With the assistance of New Schools Better Neighborhoods, we captured a preliminary vision of what can happen in neighborhoods as we redevelop housing, schools, and open space.  We successfully managed increasing densities in housing . . . [and] we were able to, I think, create a common vision for what could happen on this site."

- John Wolter
Project Manager, A Community of Friends

"The vision is to maximize the space available at the site and minimize the loss of housing units and displacement of families from the construction of a school. With the help of NSBN and A Community of Friends, we have made a good shot a mixing in housing and services and complementing the very strict construction schedule of the school district."

- Ed Reyes
Councilmember, City of Los Angeles

"I believe NSBN’s portfolio of work has laid a solid foundation on which Mayor Villaraigosa, Mr. Hertzberg, and others can now build.  NSBN knows how to do this.  What’s necessary now is a stronger commitment from civic and educational leaders.  I definitely heard the mayor endorse NSBN’s work, and his support offers real promise."

- Marty Blank
Staff Director, Coalition for Community Schools

"With NSBN-planned neighborhood-centered, joint-use schools as a model, we’d like to see schools designed and built to encourage neighborhood families to use the school campuses for pre-K, for health-promoting recreation, and for access to health care resources.  We shouldn’t have to fence the school off from the neighborhood after 3 p.m. or keep the kids locked in during the day and locked out after hours and on weekends."

- Maria Casillas
Director, Families in Schools

"We are really excited to be able to provide additional preschool services.  Without the collaboration or the support of both the Wilsona Elementary School District . . . and NSBN, we wouldn’t be able to provide those additional services. . . . NSBN has helped us meet this need and form our vision."

- Cathy Overdorf
Children’s Center of Antelope Valley

"We have a certain expertise in developing [preschool] facilities, and in all the facilities we’ve development we’ve looked for qualified, experienced service providers.  But we’re smart enough to know our limits. We would like to take advantage of the knowledge and qualifications of NSBN in developing a facility that would provide top-quality childcare services to the area."

- Robert Norris
Executive Vice President, Century Housing

"Working with NSBN has opened the door to a lot of different services within the community that we probably couldn’t have otherwise brought to our school."

- Vahe Markarian
Co-Director, Santa Monica Boulevard Community Charter School

"This whole idea [the Sun Valley Health Center] really mirrors what NSBN has been talking about for a number of years.  In fact, we took great strength from the NSBN philosophy and implemented it at this location."

- Zev Yarosklavsky
Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors

"NSBN provides the expertise of finding that type of facility and real estate . . . . that really helps us to focus on what we do best – providing quality early childhood development."

- Maria Uribe
Coordinator of Childcare Services, International Institute of Los Angeles

"What’s really exciting is this partnership that is happening between the Santa Monica [Boulevard Community] Charter School and the Los Angeles Free Clinic, a partnership that is happening because of New Schools Better Neighborhoods."

- Abbe Land
Director, Los Angeles Free Clinic

"We continue our partnership with NSBN as we need to be much more careful about leveraging our own resources.  NSBN is definitely one of the models that could provide a more interesting use of resources in the years to come."

- Graciela Italiano-Thomas
Chief Executive Officer, Los Angeles Universal Preschool

"The fact that one out of every three students doesn’t technically have a seat is what brought those that gathered at the New Schools Better Neighborhoods Symposium together.  It’s not good enough to just put them in seats.  We have to take this opportunity, with the money on the table and overwhelming demand, to create school facilities that are better attained to what we know works for students in urban areas – and that’s integrated environments with their communities."

- Ted Mitchell
Former President, Occidental College; Current President and Chief Executive Officer, NewSchool Venture Fund