The Notebook (Issue 9)
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The week of March 22, 2021

YOU KNOW IT IS SPRING IN KENTUCKY when the Bernheim eagles depart Kentucky and fly north for the summer – and the eagles are officially off to Canada! As the weather turns warmer, and many in Kentucky and around the world are receiving their vaccinations, we are starting to see the hope of safely gathering together once more. March is Women’s History Month, and if you are able to get out and about for a walk or a drive downtown, you can go see a new mural of Henrietta Helm in the Heart of the City at 4th and Muhammad Ali. The artists intend the mural to be both a memorial for one great Louisvillian and also a tribute to all Black women educators – living, deceased, and those yet to come – and their daily work that lifts up lives and determines the future of Louisville. We hope her gaze over our city will remind us each day that it is time for a New Vision of Health so we can repair and thrive together.
This Women’s History Month we are celebrating local contemporaries like Dr. Neeli Bendapudi, who has taken our city by storm as the first woman of color at the helm of the University of Louisville. We celebrate Sadiqa Reynolds, who recently hosted a ribbon cutting for the $53 million Norton Healthcare Sports and Learning Center at 30th and Muhammad Ali in West Louisville. We are also celebrating national thought leaders like Roxanne Gay, who penned this poignant rebuke, "A White Man's Bad Day," and Vice President Kamala Harris who reminds us of a brighter future. Respond to this email and let us know who you are celebrating this Women’s History Month! 

IN 1911 A GROUP OF WOMEN came together to build the Women’s Business Club, located at 427 W. Muhammad Ali Blvd (Old Walnut Street). Artists Jared Diaz and Darius Dennis have just completed a mural of Henrietta Helm to honor her legacy as one of the first Black educators in Louisville’s public schools. The artwork is commissioned by Christy Brown and Portland Museum, and the museum and artists are donating $5,000 to seed a scholarship for Black students from Portland who want to become educators.

As Ken Clay has shared on the importance of Henrietta’s new assignment overlooking the heart of our city: “I want you to know how impressed I am with the Henrietta Helm Mural atop this building downtown. It is a great statement of pride for African American teachers and educators who taught black youth in Louisville during the days of segregation. As one of those youth, I hold her and her fellow black teachers of those days in great esteem. Not only were they great teachers, they were great role models, great neighbors and church members who inspired and encouraged us to achieve despite the prevailing racial conditions of the times.”

GRATEFUL FOR this thoughtful piece from Patrick Piuma of University of Louisville’s Urban Design Studio. 

Metro Council voted last night, March 25th, and removed the Landmark status for a building that has been on W. Muhammad Ali Blvd since 1897, this building owned by the Omni Corporation meets the criteria for designation as a Landmark, and many are still hopeful that this building can be recognized as an important part of the solution, that together we can re-purpose this space to serve our community with respect and inclusivity that have not been represented in this development to date. This building deserves Landmark designation, and our community deserves a more transparent, inclusive process for revitalizing this important block back into the fabric of the heart of our city. “After physiological needs like air, food, water, and personal safety, Maslow argued, the most powerful need felt by us is belonging.” - Stephanie Meeks of the Student Conservation Association

IT IS CRITICAL that we stay engaged with the goings-on of our elected leaders both at the city and state level, to demand transparency and accountability. While we cannot attend in person, we find it helpful to tune into Louisville Metro Council hearings on Metro TV or Facebook Live - you can find their meeting schedules and agendas here. For the Kentucky Senate and House of Representatives hearings, you can watch on KET. We are watching diligently, and reaching out to our representatives, to make sure that SB 211 does not get passed, and showing our immense support for Breonna’s Law, HB 21.
ROOTBOUND FARM'S CSA begins this May! You can learn more about their CSA program here, or you can find their vegetables, lamb, and home-made products at weekly farmers markets in Louisville and Crestwood.

GREEN HEART LOUISVILLE is hosting a community conversation on their project "The HEAL Study," that investigates how neighborhood greenness impacts the health of people in these communities. The conversation will be on April 7th at 6pm EST on Zoom: For more information, contact [email protected]
KENTUCKY'S VACCINE DISTRIBUTION is now open through Phase 1C. This survey can help you know if you are in Phase 1C and teach you how to sign up for an appointment. Additionally, here is a listing of the various providers and locations for vaccine availability. We have found this tool, Vaccine Spotter, helpful for consolidating providers and showing availability.

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