The Partners, Frankie Blackburn and Bill Traynor, are life and work partners and longtime practitioners who have worked at the grass roots level in community for a combined 60 years, with direct experience as organizers, developers, social designers and Executive Directors of powerful local organizations focused on building new networks of residents and institutions that cross traditional boundaries.
We came together as Trusted Space Partners in 2012 shortly after Frankie and Bill each completed 10+ year stints as founders and Executive Directors of these dynamic community-based organizations:
Lawrence CommunityWorks in Lawrence MA
Today through Trusted Space Partners, Frankie and Bill join efforts to work with groups of local leaders, organizations or foundations and intermediaries on transformative change efforts. They also operate separate but related Coaching Practices to support dynamic and emerging leaders in the field.
What We See Out There
At Trusted Space Partners, we often encounter significant place-based change efforts that are ineffective because...
a) they do not take on the specific issues of power, equity and inclusion in the places they are trying to change, and
b) they are not firmly rooted in strong networks of trusting relationships the effectively cross race, cultural, income, positional power and geographic lines.
The good news is that in most every community we are in, we meet residents who are eager to get involved and who have creative ideas for improving the quality of life. The bad news is that many don’t feel comfortable engaging in local efforts or even asking their next-door neighbor for a simple favor.
In the midst of one of the most tumultous era's in recent memory with so many social, economic and technological changes in the world, locally, we need each other more than ever. Struggling people and communities today cannot succeed unless those “places” work well and this requires that there are real and robust networks of human beings who are able to reach across all the divisions and distinctions that fragment our neighborhoods.
Network Organizing is an innovative approach that believes that our biggest need and challenge is to shape new community moments that level power dynamics and genuinely invites a wider group of people to shape and share relationships of value and design and drive change.
Network Organizing = A Set of Trusted Space Strategies and Practices
We believe that our most important role in shaping movements for change is to focus on creating spaces and moments that are Human Centered. Here are 7 Elements of Human Centered Environments that shape our thinking and practice.
Trusted Space Partners focuses on 4 Critical Strategies that help to shape dynamic networks of residents and organizations that can lead transformative change in neighborhoods, housing communities and within institutions:
Leaders who are able to operationalize Network Organizing strategies are able to:
GENERATE more people-to-people relationships of trust, therefore more engagement and turnout
STEWARD an expanded and diverse network that has the reach clout to catalyze change
SHAPE a new narrative that inspires, moves and mobilizes even those who are hard to reach
STIMULATE a culture dominated by an entrepreneurial spirit, action-learning and self-organization.
CONVENE new marketplace moments that uncover hidden talents, treasure and time
CULTIVATE better habits of relationship building, problem solving and innovation.