Through her more than thirty years of experience, thought leader Angela Blanchard has reached an epiphany: A community should be defined by its strengths, resources, achievements and hopes – not its degree of “brokenness”. As a result of her unwavering and passionate efforts as president and CEO of Neighborhood Centers Inc., Blanchard has extended this community development framework throughout the Houston region to impact over 404,000 people a year. Under Angela’s vision and leadership, Neighborhood Centers remains the largest non-profit in Texas and is ranked in the top 1% of charitable groups in the nation.
Blanchard’s insightful knowledge of community revitalization and its impact on metropolitan areas, has garnered three invitations to the White House to meet with community development leaders, senior white house officials and President Barack Obama. Blanchard is honored to have advised the administration on the President’s Promise Zone Initiative and Ladders of Opportunity, which will work to ensure that all families, no matter where they live, have ladders of opportunity to the middle class.
An expert in Human Capital Development, Blanchard, has participated in The Brookings Institution Metropolitan Leadership Council. The “Met Council” serves as a leader in providing policy makers with research, analysis, and ideas that impact metropolitan areas. Blanchard’s paper in the publication, “Investing in What Works for America’s Communities”, a project sponsored by the Low Income Investment Fund and the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, highlights ideas of leading experts in community and economic development, academia, government policy, and philanthropy who offer entrepreneurial solutions to the national epidemic of poverty. Blanchard’s work has also afforded her participation and collaboration at the Clinton Global Initiative, where she offered insight on innovative investment approaches that help build community programs, grow local economies, promote thriving neighborhoods, and present investors with expanded opportunities for financial and social returns.
Blanchard has been featured in Fast Company Magazine, as a Gen Flux Leader for adapting and leading during troubled and disruptive times. Her BIF (Business Innovation Factory) speech entitled “Emerging after the Storm” and TEDxHouston talk outlined a powerful transformational model for community redevelopment with important implications for other efforts throughout the nation.
In addition to her work with Neighborhood Centers, Blanchard serves as a Board Member at the Greater Houston Partnership (GHP), the National Community Advisory Board for JP Morgan Chase and was recently appointed to the GHP Regional Workforce Development Task Force. She has spoken at a number of high-profile events, including the White House Social Enterprise and Opportunity Series and Executive Leadership Academy in Australia where she discusses key issues like disaster recovery and leading in a crisis. Blanchard has also presented at the Houston Hispanic Chamber of Commerce: Immigration Summit and Panel, the Houston Rotary Club and the PolicyLink Equity Summit, and many others.