One of the challenges for local communities grappling with turning the tide of systemic poverty is building a unified coalition and broad-based support to problem solve and design effective strategies to address the issue. In this session, hear from CJ Huff, the founder of Bright Futures USA, and Dana Keller, executive director of the Mexico, Missouri, Chamber of Commerce, on how a focus on kids in poverty can help communities set aside differences, change perceptions, and pave the way for comprehensive solutions.

Learning objectives include:

  • Understand how the Bright Futures Community Resiliency Framework can be used to build relationships across sectors to build Integrated Systems of Support to engage the broader community in addressing systemic poverty.
  • Understand how to establish a local leadership structure to guide and sustain local efforts.
  • Learn about specific strategies that can be deployed in any community to connect K–12 education to workforce and economic development efforts that create new opportunities not only for students, who represent the future of the workforce, but for parents as well.

CJ Huff


Bright Futures USA

—Joplin, Missouri

Dana Keller

Executive Director

Mexico Area Chamber of Commerce

—Mexico, Missouri