Denise Fairchild

Denise Fairchild, the inaugural president of Emerald Cities Collaborative, has dedicated over 30 years to strengthening housing, jobs, businesses and economic opportunities for low-income residents and communities of color, domestically and internationally.

In 1995, Dr. Fairchild founded the Community and Economic Development Department at Los Angeles Trade-Technical College and an affiliated non-profit community development research and technical assistance organization, CDTech. She helped launch the college’s Regional Economic Development Institute to provide inner-city residents with career and technical education for high-growth/high-demand jobs in the L.A. region. From 1989 to 1994, Dr. Fairchild directed the L.A. office of the Local Initiatives Support Corporation and is credited with raising over $100 million in equity, grants and loans for community-based housing and commercial development projects and, generally, with building the the L.A. region’s nonprofit housing and community development industry.

Her civic and political appointments have included the California Commission on Regionalism, the California Economic Strategy Panel, the California Local Economic Development Association, the Urban Land Institute National Inner City Advisor, the Coalition for Women’s Economic Development and the Los Angeles Environmental Quality Board. She also served as Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa’s special advisor for South LA Investments.

Juneteenth proclamaition

On Juneteenth, lessons from the past can guide our climate future

Just as MLK Day is a day of service, let’s make Juneteenth “Heritage Day” – a call to action to reclaim, and celebrate our legacy and cooperative traditions, and to strengthen the  bonds of collective struggle and community resilience – past, present and future — that we share.

June 20, 2023

Power Shutoffs: Playing with Fire

The new normal requires new strategies, new technologies and new partnerships with America’s caregivers to ensure the sick, the elderly and the most vulnerable are climate and energy resilient. Let’s be clear: power shutoffs without energy resilience strategies is still playing with fire.

November 15, 2019


We can’t have resilience without justice

If we are going to get real about resilience in an age of climate change and other large-scale disruptions, trust looms large.If people don’t trust the authorities, will they pay attention when it’s time to evacuate? Will people from different backgrounds and neighborhoods join hands to rebuild?

February 6, 2015

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