At the September 5th, 2019 annual community meeting, neighbors and guests alike are welcome to learn what's been going on in our unique neighborhood, receive updates about on-going projects, ask questions, and meet your fellow neighbors. Also at the annual meeting, SPAR members will vote on candidates for our Board of Directors. There are five openings to serve available. The Board of Directors is presenting Jennifer Chapman, Aaron Leedy and Mallik Singareddy as new candidates who would bring valuable experience, passion and skills to the organization. We are proud to present them to our membership for approval. In addition, Tim Hope, current Vice President of SPAR, and Joey Marchy, current Secretary of SPAR, are seeking reelection to the Board for a second and final term.
Please learn more about the five candidates by reading their bios below. If you have any questions for them prior to voting at the annual meeting, please submit them prior to September 5th via email to the SPAR office at email@example.com, and the candidates will provide their answers at the annual community meeting on September 5th. Join the community meeting event page here!
We'e excited to announce that SPAR Council has been awarded a grant to hire an AmeriCorps member.
The position will be 20 hours per week, with flexible hours, from October 1st, 2019 through July 31st, 2020. The selected AmeriCorps member will receive a stipend and may be eligible for educational benefits, paid health insurance and child care. The member will receive extensive training and their work will have a large positive impact on our diverse, vibrant community.
About AmeriCorps: AmeriCorps engages more than 75,000 Americans in intensive service each year at nonprofits, schools, public agencies, and community and faith-based groups across the country. Since the program’s founding in 1994, almost 1 million AmeriCorps members have contributed more than 1.2 billion hours in service across America while tackling pressing problems and mobilizing millions of volunteers for the organizations they serve. For more information on AmeriCorps, visit their website here.
Jean Tanler has been settling in to her new role as Director of Development with SPAR. Please give her a warm welcome to the neighborhood when you see her.
A little about Jean:
Jean grew up in Jacksonville and recently returned home after living in New York City for many years. She worked in film and television, primarily in script research and development, before obtaining her Master’s in Urban & Regional Planning at Pratt Institute. Upon returning, she has found a renewed love for Jacksonville’s historic neighborhoods. She lives in Avondale where she is renovating her home and preparing for the first growing season of her urban farm.
Jean is also a real estate investor, Realtor, and has seven years on non-profit management experience. Previously, she worked at the Business Outreach Center (BOC) Network, a micro-enterprise/small business development organization in New York City delivering customized business services to traditionally underserved groups, with a focus on low- and moderate-income entrepreneurs and their communities. Prior to BOC Network, she co-founded Local Labels, a retail company selling specialty foods and gifts made in NYC. Her experience also includes organizing and coordinating public involvement efforts as a Planner at Howard/Stein-Hudson Associates, the Municipal Art Society, and the Regional Plan Association and organizing events and fundraising efforts at the Neighborhood Preservation Center, a non-profit resource center for the improvement and protection of neighborhoods. She is Secretary of the Board for the Jacksonville Real Estate Investors’ Association. She loves getting her hands dirty, scouring flea markets, and travel.
On why she is excited about this job:
“My background is in community involvement, small business development, and urban planning. I’m excited about tapping into new sources of funding and developing programming that engages the community, allowing people to connect with their neighborhood. Historic Springfield is one of the best urban neighborhoods of the South. I look forward to advocating for Springfield and expanding its reach.”
On what she loves most about Springfield:
“I feel at home in Springfield’s diverse and tight-knit community. I have fallen in love with its historic homes, moss-draped tree canopy, and open porches. The neighborhood abounds with possibility. Its walkability, parks, and mixed-uses – not to mention its wonderful and welcoming residents – have set the stage for an urban renaissance in Jacksonville and make it one of the city’s most special and appealing neighborhoods.”
Springfield Preservation and Revitalization Council, Inc. has teamed up with the Give & Go Program for the second year in a row. In 2018, this valuable opportunity helped to raise over $500 which was allocated to SPAR's Commercial Corridor Beautification program. The 2019 beneficiary is still being determined.Read more
SPAR board members, staff, and committee members at the 2018 Holiday Party
We're happy to share that the SPAR Board of Directors is currently accepting applications for new board members. We are looking for board members who believe in our mission to preserve and revitalize Springfield and are willing to be active in their governance roles. A primary responsibility of board directors is to participate in the development of policy and major decision-making at board meetings held once a month. Another key responsibility is to be active on an ongoing basis in a committee of the board.
Please review the corporation bylaws, and if you are still interested in serving on the Board after reviewing these materials, please fill out the application and return it to firstname.lastname@example.org no later than August 1st. If you have a resume or similar document outlining your work experience and skill set, please include that as well. Note that all candidates must be current members of SPAR. You must be willing to participate in an interview and be approved by the Governance Committee and current board in order to be presented to the membership for a vote. Please feel free to contact email@example.com at any time if you have any questions.
If you see a guy flying a drone, or zipping through the streets of Springfield on a motorized skateboard — which around Christmastime was transformed into Santa’s sleigh — you’re looking at the one and only Soner Acar. But when he’s not up to his usual antics, he’s serious about bettering Springfield as a SPAR board member.Read more
Springfield has seen a steady influx of small retail shops popping up over the last few years. For quirky, colorful women’s clothing in the style of the 40s and 50s, check out Best Dressed Dame on Main Street. The Classic Maven caters to full-figured women with a variety of styles. Ysyntricity is a women’s apparel boutique featuring the latest in trendy fashions from sizes slim to curvy. Simply Ke’say Boutique specializes in the latest fashions for elegant, classy, and sophisticated women. If skateboarding is more your speed, head to The Block Skate Supply which boasts the coolest footwear, apparel, and hardgoods from both local and global brands. Located a few doors down, Bobby K Boutique carries a variety of basics for both men and women including button-up shirts, cotton dresses and graphic tees, with some home decor and gift items sprinkled in. Looking for a special treat for your furry friend? Bark on Park offers all sorts of goodies including dog collars, chew toys, pet carriers, and grooming products. They also provide grooming, boarding, and training services! For all your natural and organic apothecary need, Auntie Peaches will delight your senses with a wide variety of herbs and spices, coffee and tea, candles and essential oils, as well as bath products and home goods.
The City of Jacksonville has awarded the SPAR tree planting project to Liberty Tree, with 134 trees being planted in the Springfield area! The City expects the first trees to start being planted in the next 2 weeks. All trees going in on this project can be seen here. The City will flag every location where a tree will be planted a couple of days ahead of time as well as leave door-hangers.
We’re counting down to 2019 and Springfield’s Sesquicentennial by looking back at 2018 and giving thanks. Join us in celebrating this past year!
We did a lot of growing as an organization in 2018 – SPAR now has two full-time employees, Executive Director Kelly Rich and Development Director Heather Benfield; as well as our AmeriCorps intern, Victoria Baron. We are looking forward to the programming and projects they have in store for 2019!
We’d also like to give thanks to former Community Engagement Coordinator Kevin O’Halloran and former AmeriCorps intern Nehemiah Samuel for all their hard work for SPAR this past year. We are also grateful for Jax PorchFest co-chair Tiare Bugarin for her dedication to our biggest event of the year! And very special thanks to Julie Michael, our bookkeeper, for being a crucial part to the team!