Over the last year or so, The Citizen introduced a new class of Philadelphians, folks we call Generation Change Philly. That’s because they are on the front lines of making the kind of positive, equalizing, enriching change that the city of Philadelphia needs.
They hail from all different industries, generations, identities, neighborhoods and passions. What they have in common is they all have ideas that give us new hope for Philly.
They include super citizens Jen Devor, who turned an electoral loss into becoming one of the loudest voices working to build good citizens in Philly; Michelle Freeman, who channels her love of Philly into recruiting artists and businesses here from all over the country; and Dena Driscoll, a gadfly for a more livable Philadelphia.
Tech non-bros Chris Cera of Arcweb, working to create a better business climate for entrepreneurs in the city; and Wil Reynolds of Seer Interactive, who turned down millions in order to share his company’s profits with his employees (and his city).
Poverty-busters Chekemma Fulmore-Townsend and Melanie Cataldi. Doctors Shreya Kangovi and Kit Delgado, upending the way we think about healthcare. Entrepreneurs working to lift up underserved business leaders like Sulaiman Rahman of DiverseForce and Tanya Morris of Mom Your Business.
Generation Change Philly is a partnership with Keepers of the Commons, a nonprofit whose mission is to identify and connect “often overlooked community leaders” to well-established policy and ideas events, in hopes of cultivating local talent and growing their impact.
Here’s to growing the impact of these change-makers we’ve identified. Read about them below.
Generation Change Philly: The People’s Planner
Gregory Heller has spent his career trying to make Philadelphia more hospitable — and equitable — for the people who call it home.
Generation Change Philly: The Philadelphians Changing Philadelphia
Generation Change Philly: The Millennial Door Opener
Like father like son: Kellan White, the son of former City Councilman John F. White Jr., is all-in for Philadelphia. On the cusp of his toughest political campaign to date, this third-generation civic leader and political insider aims to lift up others
Generation Change Philly: The Better Business Builder
Philadelphia tech entrepreneur Chris Cera builds and runs software companies. But he also advocates for tax policies that allow small businesses to thrive, creates model work environments — and promises not to bail for the suburbs.
Generation Change Philly: The Healthcare Revolutionary
Penn Medicine’s Shreya Kangovi has created a community health model that has worked with 16,000 Philadelphians and has been replicated in 18 states. The key? Listening
Generation Change Philly: The Activist Chef
South Philly Barbacoa’s Cristina Martínez has earned the highest honors for chefs in America. But that’s just the start of her most important work
Generation Change Philly: The Doc Saving Us From Ourselves
Penn physician-scientist Kit Delgado applies what he learns from treating injured patients in the ER to changing the behavior that gets us there in the first place.
Generation Change Philly: The Impact Investor Evangelist
Engineer-turned-angel investor John Moore helped launch ImpactPHL with the goal of making Philly the social impact investment capital of the country. Five years later, he may be succeeding