ALANA communities unite!


by Rachel Dykoski • Attending yesterday’s ALANA press conference left me flustered. A) I was late! B) I didn’t see anyone I knew in the room who wasn’t C) in front of the podium either speaking or getting ready to do it.

Rachel Says – Thoughts, from the political to the personal, by Rachel Dykoski

Where’s the mobs, the ALANA (African Asian Latino and Native American) people who want, need, must get green jobs, NOW!?

I’ve been mulling things over since the nervous splendor and successful culmination of the hopes and aspirations of, well, the globe with the election of now-President Barack Obama. OK. I was still on tenterhooks until Mr. 43rd took off in that helicopter. Like the millions who watched the swearing in, I’d say some of us weren’t sold that it happened until the deed was done. Of course the Supreme Court Chief Justice flubbed and changed the oath. I’m glad they re-did it. But there’s still skeptics out there filing motions with the high court that he’s still not the prez. Laughable! Inevitable!

What wasn’t reflected in that naked, under-attended press conference were the thousands of voices who voted for change. Local folks, the Move-On-ers, the ACORN-ers, and never-been-active-before 2008-ers didn’t show.

Here’s what they missed:

ALANA firms are growing very rapidly in Minnesota. ALANA firms in Minnesota grew by 44 percent during 1997‐2002 as compared to a growth rate of 8 percent for all firms.

ALANA communities have potential in the emerging Green economy. According to the National Science Foundation in 2003 ‐ 25 percent of scientists and 37 percent of the engineers in the United States were from ALANA communities

The coalition laid out a balanced, informative plan meant to include members of the ALANA community in the burgeoning green economy.

They illustrated issues, concerns that block the way to progress as well:

Poor ALANA student performance in science and technology education threatens Minnesota’s leadership in the green and bio tech industries of the future.

ALANA firms are not a significant presence in many sectors of the emerging green economy.

Learn more here.

The message: We are capable, we know what’s needed, and there is a commitment to see ALANA communities succeed and be part of the green economy. But we can’t do it alone. We need support from all sectors – government, business, education and people. If we don’t work to set up processes toward progress, now, we’ll miss out on opportunities that impact all Minnesotans.

The time is NOW – Get active, get vocal and let’s start where you live.