9th Annual Woodlawn Community Summit

“Woodlawn: A New Urban Mosaic” | March 3, 2018

The Woodlawn Community Summit is a progressive initiative that drives the collaboration of neighbors, youth groups, elected leaders, business owners, and community stakeholders to promote the comprehensive growth and well-being of the Woodlawn community.

The Summit is designed by residents for residents and offers an energizing morning of reflection and action for the neighborhood and businesses, providing access to creative solutions to community issues and to connect a network of resources and support.

The Woodlawn Community Summit and South East Chicago Commission (SECC) hosted the 9th Annual Woodlawn Community Summit, with a community-driven theme “A New Urban Mosaic,” on Saturday March 3, 2018, from 8 a.m. -12:30 p.m., at the University of Chicago School of Social Service Administration, 969 East 60th Street. With the goal to carve one path to a vibrant community, this summit brought together residents, stakeholders and planners for a united vision for the community.

“This summit is planned by residents for residents. We appreciate the support from the community and our sponsors for this annual event,” stated Woodlawn Community Summit Co-Founder Elizabeth Gardner. “The Advisory Committee has worked tirelessly to deliver an insightful program designed to ensure resident and stakeholder participation in what we believe to be an exciting future for Woodlawn and its surrounding communities. We want to ensure that their voices are heard and are thrilled so many residents attend and express how much the summit means to them.”

The 2018 keynote speaker was Melody Spann Cooper, chair of Midway Broadcasting Corporation, a best-in-class African-American owned media boutique whose properties include radio and interactive platforms. Midway Broadcasting properties include WVON 1690AM, the oldest Black-oriented radio station in Chicago.

Other speakers included representatives from the Jewel-Osco, Cook County Land Bank,World Business Chicago, local stakeholders, and business owners. Mattie Butler, Executive Director of WECAN (Woodlawn East Community and Neighbors), received the Annual Community Service Award for her dedication to the community.

Programming Highlights

  • Community Networking
  • Community Recognition and Awards
  • Keynote Speakers
  • Thought-Leader Panel Discussions
  • Open Forum
  • Roundtable Sessions
  • Youth Arts & Culture Performance
  • Resource Tables
  • Volunteer Recruitment
  • Housing Trolley Tour

2018 Summit Sponsors

Woodlawn: At-A-Glance


  • Woodlawn is a growing community of approximately 30,000, predominately mixed-income African-American residents.
  • The community is located on Chicago’s lakefront, just eight miles from the city’s downtown Loop area.

Four Quadrants

The community of Woodlawn has organized itself along the geographic boundaries of 63rd Street, running east and west, and Cottage Grove, running north and south, to create four quadrants, each with its unique socio-economic profile.

Land Development

Woodlawn is highly-favored for new development, embracing an estimated 59 acres of vacant city-owned land, with an additional 85 acres of vacant land owned privately, according to the Gensler study.

Woodlawn Housing Stock

Realtor.com reports 213 properties making up more than 240 units were sold in the first three months of 2018. The combination of increased rehabbing and sales, with a record high sales price of $599,000 single family home price reported in March, 2018 support the expectation for continued population growth and a shift in the economic demographics, including an increase in the ownership ratio.


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