The Hate Has No Home Here project began right here in North Park, a Chicago neighborhood characterized by its diversity of age, race, nationality and ethnicity. Many ties bind the residents of North Park to one another; the most notable is the neighborhood school, Peterson Elementary School, where the student body mimics the demographics of the neighborhood and where educators and families are committed to celebrating diversity. The phrase used in this poster was imagined by a third grader and a kindergartener at Peterson and served as the inspiration for a project that quickly spread well outside our sweet little neighborhood. What started as an effort similar to our "Ribbons for Peace" and "All Are Welcome" campaigns, designed to demonstrate our neighborhood's welcoming environment, became a movement when we added artwork developed by Steven Luce and the teamwork of neighbors Kurt Peterson, Catherine Korda, Barbara Nordlund, Megan Trinter, Jeanne Olson, and Carmen Rodriguez.
You can blame Kurt, for innocently asking on the FB North Park Neighbors page whether we were going to 'do something' after a few unfortunate incidents in and around our area caused neighbors to grow concerned about a rise in hate speech and behavior. Next time, Kurt, maybe be more specific? To his credit, Kurt's been with us every step of the way since, helping to plan, develop, and grow the project. Kurt's focus is on connecting people and event planning.
Every successful team has someone who does a little bit of everything. Megan is that person for us. From helping to keep distribution sites stocked and ready, to coordinating event contacts, attending outreach functions, and providing the occasional interpretive dance when the tensions run high, Megan is the smile in the room, and the helping hand when you're running low, and the right-there-just-when-you-need-her MVP.
In the category of 'nothing would get done around here without...' you'll find Catherine Korda, who has tirelessly invested her time and energy in managing our translation requests, artwork delivery, assisting with national project lead support, communications, and planning. Catherine has also represented our community and this project at events throughout the city. We're grateful more than we can say for her relentless capacity and skill.
Barbara's got the kind of 'can-do' attitude that convinces a group of neighbors they can take a little community poster project and change the world. Here we are, thousands of prints later, with yard signs all over the country and a few in places around the world, plus more than 20 translations, and a wide network of new friends and connections, thinking she might be right! Barbara serves as a pickup site coordinator, outreach presenter, and financial/ fundraising manager.
It's all good and well until you have to put pen to paper and make something work. That's where Steven came in. With a powerful message and an idea that we wanted to develop a universal expression that would help our neighbors know they live in a safe and welcoming community, Steven pulled together the simple design that's become a recognized symbol for the resistance to hate speech in our community and beyond.
The good work of any team can often be traced to someone with a clipboard. In this case, Carmen has been the one to develop meeting agendas, keep the team on task, and handle press inquiries and contacts. In other words, she's got the clipboard. We're relieved. Nobody really wants the clipboard. Carmen's also helped us leverage the resources of our neighborhood civic association, HNPCA, to effectively manage our project as we have continued to grow.
If some are the creative geniuses and others are excellent organizers, all pale when it comes to the technical and media savvy of team member Jeanne Olson. She single-handedly developed the team's social media identity allowing us to expand all across the country and into remote places around the world. Jeanne is a networker extraordinaire and makes any endeavor polished and professional with just a few clicks of a keyboard.