A Message From the President

 Sharmain Matlock-Turner Photo

Dear Friend of the Coalition:

More than 40 years ago, two organizations sprang up to address inequities and opportunities in Philadelphia: The Philadelphia Urban Coalition and the Urban Affairs Partnership. They merged in the early 1990s to form the Greater Philadelphia Urban Affairs Coalition — GPUAC. And in September of 2010 we changed our name to the Urban Affairs Coalition.

We removed "Greater Philadelphia" from our name because, although we will always have our roots in this region, our work of building wealth, creating opportunities for youth, and strengthening nonprofits extends beyond Philadelphia and its five counties. And we haven't missed the fact that many of you have said our new name is easier to say.

As the Urban Affairs Coalition, we will continue to do what we have always been known for: bringing people together and getting things done. We will work with business, communities, and government to solve problems facing urban communities and our most vulnerable populations.   We have an engaged and active board of directors, a terrific and committed staff and more than 75 program partners who are getting the hard work done on the ground each and every day.

I am proud to have led the Coalition for the last 13 years. We have made great strides on issues facing our communities, such as finding jobs for thousands of young people, working with disadvantaged businesses to help them grow, fighting predatory lending practices, making financial education available, supporting training, placement and diversity in the workforce, working with young people to end violence as well as drug and alcohol addiction, preventing the spread of HIV/AIDS, and making school choice available and public education stronger.  And yet there is much more to be done. We as the Urban Affairs Coalition promise to continue to drive change, every day.

Kind regards,

Sharmain Matlock-Turner
President & CEO