A message from Laura Grannemann, Vice President of the Rocket Community Fund and Executive Director of the Gilbert Family Foundation.
Nearly one year ago, the Rocket Community Fund and Gilbert Family Foundation made a joint $500 million, 10-year commitment to break down generational barriers and jumpstart opportunity for Detroit residents. We are proud of the work we have accomplished toward this mission over the last year and truly believe our best work is still ahead!
You have seen me write before about being “obsessed with finding a better way.” This belief, which is one of our company’s core values (or ISMs), reflects our commitment to constant reflection and improvement. From strengthening our systems to refining our data-driven investment strategies, we believe that there is always a better way to make an impact and take considerable pride in working alongside partners to deploy innovative solutions to the most challenging issues facing our communities.
As we look ahead to the next nine years of this transformational commitment, the importance of “finding a better way” has never been more relevant. That is why I’m excited to share with you today some important changes to both the Rocket Community Fund and Gilbert Family Foundation.
Effective this month, the Rocket Community Fund is shifting its mission to focus on the core strengths of our organization: simplifying complex and inequitable systems to ensure that every American has access to stable, healthy housing. We are enormously proud of the work we have done over the last decade to create more stable housing in Detroit and believe that our work can be a model for similar success in other cities across the country.
On the Gilbert Family Foundation side, we are excited to expand on the work that we launched a year ago under the organization’s “Building Opportunity and Equity” pillar of investments. In addition to supporting stable housing for Detroiters – a shared goal of the Rocket Community Fund – the Gilbert Family Foundation is growing to include teams focused on Arts & Culture, Public Spaces, and Economic Mobility. These investment areas have long been a passion for the Gilbert Family and we are excited to maintain continuity for this essential work.
Ultimately, these adjustments are about aligning our resources the most strategic way possible to create a stronger platform for long-term impact, which leads me to my last announcement. As I said at the beginning of this email, one year ago we made a joint commitment to support our community. That means that, while our organizations are changing, we are still going to collaborate deeply around a shared strategy.
So what is our shared strategy? We aim to stabilize housing for Detroiters at risk of tax foreclosure or eviction, then provide access to wraparound supports that increase their household income and assets, helping them achieve economic stability and build wealth.
Delivering on this goal will require both the Rocket Community Fund and Gilbert Family Foundation, not to mention our many partners, to think somewhat differently about our work. There will be new opportunities for innovation, creativity and collaboration. In short, it is an exciting time for all of us – no matter what organization you work for – and we are grateful for your continued support on this important journey.