TRANSCRIPT: A NYer Moves to Gtown

What happens when two native New Yorkers move to Germantown — and why they’ve stayed. 

Full unedited transcript of The Mission Branch radio show broadcast on Germantown Community Radio/GtownRadio.com, January 2, 2019:

LAWANDA HORTON SAUTER: It’s one o’clock pm and you’re listening to Germantown Community Radio 92.9 WGGTLP Philadelphia and online at GtownRadio.com. This is The Missing Branch, the People’s platform, a Mission Incorporated radio show and I am your host, Lawanda Horton Sauter. Today’s episode is Part One of an eight-part series on the Germantown neighborhood of Philly. Germantown has a character of its own a lot of history and a lot of characters. This show asks: What happens when two native NYers move to Gtown, and why we’ve stayed.

In the spirit of honesty, not all of my comments about our move to Philly & our time in Germantown will be positive, and in this day & age where everyone is offended by absolutely everything I think folks are just going to have to learn to deal with people speaking the truth of their experience. Having said that, we’re open minded people and are unafraid to change our mind or our views when presented with new information, in fact I had a high school social studies teacher that told me flexibility implies intelligence. We would love to have a discussion with you. Interact with us on Facebook, we’d love to talk more!

I guess I’d like to start with with our move to Philly in general, and why we came here and what our first impressions were of Philly as a whole.

HENRY SAUTER:  The reason we came is I was looking to go to law school. I had been working for a couple years with the NY state legislature. I knew that I wanted to go to law school not to be a lawyer but because there was a certain set of skills that I thought it would develop. Among the schools I was looking at was Albany where I could go and still be involved in politics in NY. William and Mary cause I liked the idea of living down there in Williamsburg Virginia. It’s a great historic school, in fact even James Comey got his degree here. I didn’t know that at the time and didn’t even know who he was at the time. Then I looked at Temple.

They had a great public interest program and an excellent trial program – trial is about advocacy. I wanted to go to a school to learn the best way to make a case. Even if not in a courtroom to legislatures and regulators and just organizing my thoughts.  I enjoyed hearing from the Dean the time about all the work he did on civil rights in the 60’s. I visited classes, was impressed with the faculty. We enjoyed our two or three visits it would get us out of Albany, a change of scenery and a great law school. Price was also an issue. William and Mary was and Temple is ultimately a public school that uses state funds to keep their tuition affordable for people who don’t come from wealthy backgrounds, and that really appealed to me.

LAWANDA: At the time Henry had applied for Law School we had been dating for a year. I had just scored an amazing job at a lobbying form. I had been working their four months when Henry came to me with a proposal to move. My job was really awesome, after having some really horrible jobs I finally found a place that treated me with a tremendous amount of respect.

They were a medical lobbying firm, their office was full of doctors and lawyers. They were really impressed with the work I was doing and I felt there was a lot of potential to move up. So I was like “Really dude? Now?” but when he was making the case for Philadelphia, he was considering what Philadelphia might mean for me as a Woman of Color. He felt Philadelphia could be a place where I could really thrive.

Having the experiences I’d had I upstate NY as a black female professional, I knew that while this job I was in was what I had always hoped for, if things didn’t go well I would be back in that climate. Ahd you know it takes a special guy to get me to move out of NY state to somewhere I have no roots or connections.

I want to talk a little bit about how I imagined Philadelphia would be like. And how it was different from my expectations.

This is just crazy me but… I knew how black Philadelphia was and I imagined Philly as like this “chocolate city.” I knew that Philly had actually had black mayors and POC in various political positions. That wasn’t easy to find in NY state at the capital because of the people of color who came up from the city then left.

HENRY: And you’d been to Philadelphia earlier, hadn’t you?

LAWANDA: It was destined, right? My first visit to Philly was during the Million Woman March and I think that’s what gave me the Chocolate City idea. Because I came to the March, I was in college at the time, Sister Soldier was on the stage. She was speaking truth to the black girls that day. I saw black people as far as the eye could see. I got on someone’s shoulders, and I saw people of color everywhere. It was almost tear-inducing. Such a beautiful sight. And in my heart I thought about what It would be like to live in a city like that.

I mean, being a woman of color in Albany NY you can count the number of us who have like a job where you wear a suit and are allowed in. I would wave to the other four people on our way into work . So to see someone in positions of leadership isn’t something you see very often in that particular part of NY state. And that’s still a problem.

So I was excited to come to this place, and Henry thought it would be a great place for me as a woman of color. And we were both right in that sense because I think that I was worth more immediately when I came to Philadelphia. I’ve really been allowed to grow into my own. Philadelphia has given me cajones. You can’t live in Philly and not know how to stick up for yourself. I’m a Taurus, so by nature if you push the wrong buttons the bull will break the china. I think now allowing situations to blow up like that, but correcting the situations in the immediate, how to nip things in the bud. I do thank Philly for that.

HENRY: The drive into Temple in 2006, there certainly were some rough areas in that part of North Philadelphia. I’ve been amazed in the past five years just to see the level of development that has happened. We first came in to visit a friend of mine in UPenn, of course so we saw an incredibly beautiful campus, hung out in West Philadelphia, we drove down to Center City for a meal at Effie’s it was BYOB, we stopped at the Foodery for craft beers.

Albany always felt like Harrisburg, a state capital. Philadelphia felt like we were finally in a big city. That really appealed to me. We were seeing different parts of the city, once we were looking for a place to live of course, it was a very different experience.

LAWANDA:  About the restaurants. This is something about Phila that most people elsewhere don’t realize. We might be known for our cream cheese and cheese steaks but the food in Philadelphia is bangin’. Philly has an amazing restaurant scene. It doesn’t matter how much you spend. You can go to restaurants in all price ranges and have a really really good meal.

HERNY: Falafel, Dominican… yes some of our favorite meals have been under ten, twenty dollars. One of things that’s wonderful about Philadelphia’s food scene is that it’s so dynamic. But there’s a sad side of that too, there’s such a high turnover, so many restaurants I’ve loved that are no longer around anymore. Like Geechee Girl! But hopefully as we see stuff constantly in flux, as new people try their own businesses here, we’ll see something along those lines again.

LAWANDA: Also the owner of Geechee Girl now cooks at EAT Café which is the non-profit café where you pay what you can. There have been some news stories out lately about how the café isn’t getting the level of support as perhaps it should, given that no matter what your income level you can actually get food there. They need people who can afford to pay the full amount to go, so that other people can afford.

Getting back to our move to Philadelphia as the background to how we arrived in Germantown. Initially we lived in Roxborough.

HENRY: When we were surveying Philadelphia, we started driving a grid to try to understand what neighborhoods were like. We weren’t finding much online. It’s an imperfect science because a lot of Philadelphians for tax purposes don’t fix up the outside of their houses as much as they could particularly to keep tax assessments low. So neighborhoods may look rougher on the outside then they are on the inside.

We were driving around, Lawanada had a map and she color coded it as we drove: yellow maybe, green yes, red no way. We were driving around, marking this map. We hadn’t found Roxborough yet but had found a listing on Craig’s List.

LAWANDA: When I was sitting at my desk of this amazing job, trying to decide if I wanted to leave it to run off with this guy I’d been dating a year who I liked but I didn’t know if I liked him that much. I’m researching Philly online and in 2005 -2006, Philadelphia had the worst press in the world. Nothing good came up when I searched the city.

I’d read about murder, crime, poverty… I didn’t hear about Mummers or the Liberty Bell or anything positive. I was thinking Ummmm… I like him but I don’t like him that much? But now what was I to do leaving the state I’d lived my entire life to chase this man to this other city? The terrible press Philadelphia had at the time made it hard for us to select a neighborhood.

Also the way Philly is set up, you can be in a good neighborhood then go one street over and it’s like a completely different vibe. If you were to go to Upstate NY and go to Albany, you’d know where the bad  areas were and all you had to do was avoid those two streets and you’d be good.

But in Philly you could be on a good block which is completely unheard of in our experience. Watching them count the murders down when we moved here, it was horrifying. I think this counting of the murders was done away with when Michael Nutter came on the scene. Seems like they’re starting to do that again which is horrible advertising for Philadelphia.

Anyway when we first moved to Roxborough because that was the place we sort of felt was the safest bet and I think it was closer to what we were used to in terms of where we had lived.

HENRY: It was a really nice house. You had certain expectations, if you were going to move from Philly you wanted a place you really liked. We had a garden. Hedges.

LAWANDA: Yeah it was dope.

HENRY: We had these sculptures of lions at the end of our driveway…

LAWANDA: I don’t know if the sculptures did it for me. But it was very private. I could be back there in the buff and no one would know.

We had tea parties back there, it was really awesome. What was really interesting we later found out Roxborough had the least amount of crime of any Philly neighborhood. We didn’t know it when we moved there but you could feel it you could sense it. We found out from our neighbors we were surrounded – like, everyone living around us was a cop or some kind of agent or detective. Which probably kept a lot of bad people away.

So we left Roxborough and moved to like Italian South Philly – we were right were Washington Avenue at 11th.  And the street that we lived on, it was like an entire Italian family lived in all of the houses, and then it was us and one other couple that also wasn’t related.  And then when we moved there it was kind of like “The Family,” you know? We saw people going in & out of each other’s houses.

When I was moving my stuff in, Henry wasn’t around and they wanted to know all about me. “Who is this person, what are you doing in our neighborhood? What are you all about?” I think in a way they were trying to decide if they were going to let me stay there, you know? But eventually we got to be really close to that family and they looked out for me when Henry was away.

HENRY: That’s how you learned to make sauce and pasta from scratch.

LAWANDA: I think that Philly needs neighborhoods like that. It can be off-putting or nerve-wracking to come into a neighborhood where neighbors are so concerned with who gets to live there.  I think as long as it doesn’t touch upon racism which there probably is an element of that but also just outsiderness. But there are other neighborhoods that can benefit from neighbors being at that level of vigilance instead of taking their comments to Facebook.

Another thing about Roxborough it seemed like it was Interracial City – we didn’t choose that area because of this but once we got there it seemed we saw a lot of interracial couples and maybe that helped Henry and me feel a little more comfortable. I think it was one of those after-the-fact things that walking around I noticed almost immediately. Lots of intermingling which helped make the move here easier.

First impressions of Germantown, though.

HENRY: Lawanda had found a few places online, I went to see them. I parked at Market Square, I looked around, I saw the beautiful Historical Society building. Uncle Bobbies wasn’t there yet it looked like an abandoned day care not well kept up but then across the street Wells Fargo, the CPA, the Citizens Bank, all these beautiful stone buildings.

We rent from what was the old Asher Candy factory, a cool building. There wasn’t a lot going on in the street at the time but the architecture left a great impression.

LAWANDA: I think we came to Germantown once for a job interview but we parked on Market Square. My first impressions of Germantown was wow, what potential. Really, potential is the word I come to when I think of Philadelphia. Of course that first time I was here alone, someone was mugged outside my building but those are the kind of things you come to sort of love in a sick way about Germantown. To me, Germantown is real life. Some people are not equipped to handle real life.

Germantown is full of people who care, people who don’t care. There are brilliant reminders of beauty. And sad reminders that not everyone gets to experience that beauty.

HENRY: I have short list of pet peeves. Litter. No reason to treat your neighborhood that way. There’s people who spit everywhere. Double parking. If there’s a space just pull into it! Don’t block traffic!

LAWANDA: Henry has a thing about traffic. He’s at war with Philly drivers. He gets at a level of frustration and irritation that I can’t even elicit from him. To me, it’s just Philly. Real life. People making bold, foolish and frustrating moves.

But I love so much about Germantown. The rawness of it. Any given time you can see someone’s weave blowing around in the street. Or the smell of the food from the Jamaican spot. And if you come to a certain street in Germantown you will smell the food!

HENRY: Every time we go to the library, the smell of roasted meats is incredible.

LAWANDA: I love that! I like the Taxi Hat guys, I know all of them. We chat on a daily basis. I find that some of what people feel uncomfortable about Germantown are the people who are here, but it’s a sign to me that they haven’t met them. There are people who may have given me slightly uncomfortable vibes, and so I dive right in to engage them. I’m that girl in the horror movie who walks down into the basement to check a noise. If I’m uncomfortable, I want to find out what’s going on.

I’m open minded. I go with my instinct. Now if someone’s wielding an axe of course I’m not going to mess with them but more often than not I’m open to meeting new people and I’ve been pleasantly surprised by really positive interactions I’ve had with people who can give off what you might feel is a menacing look. Who are kinda just regular people trying to make a living.

HENRY: Some people might see loosie guys on the street and feel that’s a breakdown of law & order but it’s eyes and ears on the community that are also regulating stuff and keeping an eye on the neighborhood.

LAWANDA: Yeah those guys know and care about each other, and they also – there’s a lot of collaboration and cooperation that goes down you know when you have several guys selling loosies or whatever and they’re all there trying to make a living. So there’s a camaraderie and compromise that’s happening down there. One day coming to the corner and they were like “You know so-and-so died?” I tend to not know anyone’s names though but we have face recognition. I know they’re looking out for me, that they’re making sure I get to where I’m going safely.

If you’re the kind of person spends your life inside, and only comes out for errands then spends the rest of their leisure time in CC or Chestnut Hill then you don’t know these people in the neighborhood, and it’s the unknown that you fear, not that there is a legitimate cause for concern or an immediate danger. You’re more likely to be involved in something dangerous or worrisome in Germantown if you’re already engaged in and involved in things that are illegal or things you shouldn’t be involved in. It’s not often that your every day Joe is harassed or attacked just for going to the Dollar Store.

Another thing I love about Germantown is you can find a coffee shop, a bookstore, a natural food store, an outdoor garden selling produce and plants, you can find that in these nooks and crannies. This Philadelphia thing where you turn the block and there’s either a nice or a not-so-nice surprise around the corner. Call me a sucker for adventure but I do enjoy discovering things I’ve never seen before.

I wish more people engaged with the history here. I love it. And coming from a background in fundraising for historic houses, there are just so many here. So much potential! I think it’s human nature to desire to see things grow and improve. And it feels even better when you’re a part of what makes those positive changes happen.

But on the other side of that — as a reminder to the people who organize in Germantown and who our community folk are very active. It doesn’t feel so great when you’re not a part of it. When you’re not included in it. And that brings me to some of my frustrations about Germantown. I feel as though not everyone is included.

From email distribution to certain events. Even just the tone and subject matter of some of the things that are going on here. It seems to be lacking in an understanding of who actually lives here. And sometimes not just lacking understanding, but dismissive of who lives here. What the salary ranges are like. What it’s like to live and exist.

Sometimes we criticize certain parts of the community for not being involved in things and we don’t connect that to whether or not they were made aware of those things in the first place. Whether or not they’re already working three jobs and are barely getting by and don’t have a whole lot of extra or free time for street cleanup and other neighborhood association gatherings.

There’s just a lot of co-occurring challenges in these communities, and it’s always passed off as a lack of interest in being involved when I think in reality it’s more complex than that. So It’s easy to see how given those things a large portion of Germantown – 80% black, average income $28k/year —  would feel isolated, uninvited, and disconnected from some of the things that are happening here.

To speak to more of my Germantown frustrations: when I first moved to Germantown, one of the first things someone approached me about was this Germantown Settlement. I don’t know what happened with this – Henry did some research but all I know is the first thing that was said to me when I was proposing to do something new here. And it was negative so I stopped listening. And then subsequently it was brought up in almost every conversation I had with people about things I wanted to do here. Let’s do a quick rundown about what happened with this Germantown Settlement everyone keeps talking about.

HENRY: Buckle up, I have a quick narrative, I won’t be able to get into everything, I won’t use any names. I’m sure many people will have very strong opinions, they can let us know on Facebook, tell us what you’ve observed.

LAWANDA: Where are you getting this information?

HENRY: I read thru a bunch of investigative articles by various media thru Philly from 2010 to the present. Everything can be sourced from the articles. Essentially it’s a question of, was there corruption? Enabling? Mismanagement? Incompetence? There’s a lot of unanswered questions and very little accountability. I think that’s what rubs people the wrong way.

What was supposed to be a project for improving this entire area – Germantown — became a huge mess. Nothing happens in a vacuum – and this problem is still with us. In March 2018, even though settlement had been wound up in 2009 and the non-profit was disbanded (it went into bankruptcy), you still have properties that are still owned by the former executive director or are controlled by him. Housing Authorities are trying to get control of them again. People are without heat and gas. There’s neglect.

LAWANDA: What’s the backstory?

HENRY: Settlement was actually founded in 1884 as free kindergarten for children of Irish mill workers. It was a Quaker woman that did it. This eventually became more social services including libraries and similar stuff for people like that. By the late 60’s we started seeing White Flight in this area, and so what was a vestige of old Germantown now was primarily white Quakers distributing money to the black residents. The Quakers wanted to see more black people involved in this, and rightfully so. Any non-profit should reflect who it serves as its clients. So they started bringing on more black board members. The first one eventually became its executive director in the 80’s – he had been involved with it over a period of twenty years and then became its executive director. By most accounts, throughout the 80’s and even to about 1995 it was run well, providing social services and housing.

This person was very good at raising money. Not so good at managing money. But he had strong accountants in place. One of the really good community leaders who was guiding this passed away in the mid 90’s and his accountant passed away in the mid 90’s. About there it’s thought that’s the turning point. Not everyone agrees on this but that’s the general consensus.

It’s a story of ambition. Of bringing more and more money into the area. It’s estimated between the 80’s and 2010, close to 100 million dollars in grants, low-interest loans and tax breaks flowed thru that organization and only that organization to Germantown. Pretty much everything here went thru that.

LAWANDA: So it sounds like we would need to avoid having one organization be the entity that gets all the money coming into Germantown.

HENRY: Absolutely. You want to have checks and balances. You want to have diversity with that.

  1. In 1999, part of the ambition involved launching the Germantown Settlement Charter School. Someone without a background in education tried to run a charter school. It did so poorly. They kept trying to bring new people on, but it’s hard to attract good people when you’re not doing payroll taxes. You’re missing payroll, you’re not paying health insurance. Checks keep bouncing.

Throughout all this, because this was an important project – and this is where enabling comes in perhaps, were there enablers or was there corruption? — people from all levels of government (local, state and federal) kept the money flowing into here.

LAWANDA: Was anyone ever indicted? Any consequences for mismanagement?

HENRY: I have not seen any. However the guy that was the executive director went into business afterward with somebody who’d gotten out of Federal prison for money laundering. So that kind of reflects poorly.

LAWANDA: That reflects poorly on Philadelphia in general because it happens to be a city where there’s an awful lot of that going on.

HENRY: So by early 2000’s, the budget starting about 2 million dollars they get up to about 7 million at the same time seeing deficits of 2 million or so a year. This guy controlled over 30 different companies in the Northwest – he was president of at least 16.  You know how hard it is to run a business. There’s no legitimate reason for someone to be running 16 businesses.

LAWANDA: From a consulting standpoint (because we are consultants) it’s also just not a good idea to be president of 16 companies. It’s rife with potential for conflict and mismanagement.

HENRY: Exactly, that’s the big problem here. What happened to the money? It was constantly robbing Peter to pay Paul. It was moving money from one entity to constantly stay one step ahead of this being shut off, this crisis here.  Grant money that was supposed to be for the charter school might show up in the bank accounts of another place. Hundreds of thousands of dollars flowing back and forth.

To many outsiders it looked like a very well-run organization. So this one guy who’d been with the Housing Authority took an accounting job here as the next step in his career. He started looking over the books, and he blew the whistle. He was fired almost immediately and that was the beginning of the end. Then in 2009 it had to go into bankruptcy. And this was just a story of possibly people enabling, making sure important projects kept going along. Certainly it’s incompetence and mismanagement at the top. There’s a huge breakdown in trust now. People don’t want to see a repeat of this kind of thing.

LAWANDA: Yeah, well. We’re outsiders so I think our emotions aren’t as high about this whole thing. Honestly, my first reaction was like “Ok when did that happen? And why is everyone still talking about it?”

HENRY: Cause it’s not over with.

LAWANDA: I think though that part of the reason why people are still talking about it because it’s now really difficult to get money to come to this area because people have been really burned by this. I do hope for the sake of Germantown we can get to a point where we can move past this. Honestly when I talk about my frustrations about Germantown, this is one of them for the simple fact that it comes up in every conversation – in any conversation — about the things that we ought to do to make this place what we all would like to see it become. If we can’t have a conversation about the future without bringing up the past, it’s going to be much harder for us to ever see that future come to fruition.

That’s my opinion. There’s probably a ton of people who will disagree with this perspective. But a clean clear set of eyes has come to your neighborhood, saying “You guys seem pretty wrapped up in this particular thing.” It’s one thing to be wrapped up in something, it’s another to be wrapped to such a degree that you are unable to move forward with anything else.

Another frustration: the Germantown Facebook pages. Facebook has turned into a really naughty place, just in general. Even when I look at my hometown pages, it’s the people who are from  home vs the people who are new to home, and they’re just going at each other’s throats all day. But in Germantown the Facebook pages here take on an interesting characteristic. Because I think again there are those people who truly care, and the well-meaning folks and then like the folks who want to appear to be well-meaning.

I think there are far more people on the Germantown page talking about trash then actually picking up trash in the neighborhood. Every time there’s a clean-up I see like one or two people – shout out to Keith Schenck!– I see a few people out there actually cleaning up the trash but I hear hundreds: these threads will go on for days and weeks.

And I will be the first to admit that from time to time I have gone on there and gotten involved and immediately regretted it. But I think that over the years I’ve maybe commented on five posts that lasted days. One was actually about a missing turtle from the grounds of one of the historic houses here. It almost completely ruined my holiday because my notifications kept binging and at the time I didn’t have those turned off. And it was like a Thanksgiving or Christmas holiday and people were like talked for two weeks about the missing turtle…

Some of this stuff is just really disappointing for a community that needs so many things. For a community where people are actually dying. To have week-long conversations about turtles on a neighborhood page. Two weeks, in this case. Again, I think that these are the kinds of things where our time hopefully in 2019 people will start to think about how they’re contributing to the problem either thru inaction or not very helpful action.

There are processes we need to go thru, for instance, to have trash removed. It’s not about any one individual or organization so I feel attacks aren’t helpful. I feel like this kind of dialog really consumes Germantown. There are far fewer people actually supporting the non-profit organizations here that are trying to solve a lot of the problems. I find they don’t have enough volunteers, nobody’s going to clean up, people aren’t attending their events or providing them with the kind of money they need to do a good job. They’re only talking about how poor a job they’re doing. That’s something that I’d really like to see resolved in Germantown. And I think it will make it a better place to be and live and work.

We’re like a bunch of crabby old ladies and men looking outside of our windows for things to find wrong. Then arriving at the window again the next day to find more things wrong. I just hope that we can like leave the house and get off Facebook and actually do stuff.

The other thing I find a little bit frustrating is the racial divide, both in Philadelphia and also in Germantown. I was really surprised to find in like 2018 that there’s still a city in America that is still as segregated that I think Philadelphia is. That was definitely surprising. That is given that even living in upstate New York, even being only like one of five black people who had a higher level of job in local government and lobbying. Even given all of that, I was super surprised to find how racially segregated we were. That I could attend an event and be the only black person there. That Henry could come with me somewhere and be the only white person.

There isn’t the kind of like community and camaraderie that we all love to talk about. That seems to just not exist.

I think there are ways that we create this almost subconsciously. There are people we are familiar with, people we like, people we hang out with that are in the spaces we feel comfortable in. I think the coverage of Philadelphia or of Germantown more specifically is along those lines. If the reporter feels most comfortable at a particular location, then the story is about that location and the people who are at that location. But if they don’t feel comfortable then the story isn’t happening there.

I’d like to see more support. More diverse coverage, more diverse support of organizations and institutions here. And more support for ground level initiatives. Don’t assume they’re the only organizations worthy of writing a check to are the ones that have been covered in the newspaper.

HENRY: Wasn’t that kind of the problem, with Germantown only supporting the Settlement for so long, and not having a diverse set of organizations here?

LAWANDA: Yeah and I think that just because the players are different doesn’t mean you’re not still putting yourself at risk to have some of the same problems.

Something I read the other day about Philadelphia and gatherings. Like our city’s planning and strategy is like a raindrop in the middle of a storm. What that analogy is supposed to imply is that there’s constant planning taking place, constantly. In fact I believe to a certain degree that some of the planning is about not having to do. If we make it seem as though the paperwork process in the planning is something that takes forever then we never have to actually attempt to solve the issues.

What sort of scares people about getting started, they feel as though they have to do something that is complete. People don’t feel accomplished working on things in pieces. And working on things in pieces, I know as a consultant, absolutely positively is the only way to get anything done. So if the problem is litter, it has to start with you cleaning up the block. If the problem is drugs and violence, any solution has to start at the root cause of that, which is often unemployment and lack of opportunity. And if you can do one little thing that actually attacks that problem. If there were hundreds of people doing one little thing, we’d see a significant change. I think we need to see more people out in the street after the meetings. There’s a ton of people who’ll come out to the meetings, but after the meeting no one’s there. They’re just waiting until the next meeting.

Share your feedback, comment on Facebook @TheMissingBranch. Your comments could become a topic of conversation for an upcoming show. Let’s talk about the people of Germantown who are helping shape our community.

The Mission Branch is a Mission Incorporated radio show. Mission Incorporated help start, grow, find funding for non-profit organizations and community activism throughout the greater Philadelphia region. Learn more at www.MissionIncDevelopment.com. Follow us on Facebook & Twitter. Power to the people!

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