The Community Pillar Award recognizes four pillars of the community: a local business, a nonprofit, a youth, and a member of WEHDC’s Board, all of who have shown unwavering commitment to the West End neighborhood.
The Joe Cardoza Unsung Hero Award honors a member of our community for doing things that others would not do, could not do, or did not find time to do to make the West End a better neighborhood. This year, the Joe Cardoza Unsung Hero nomination process was open to public voting to determine this year’s awardee.
Like many Providence residents, I’d been aware of some of the work West Elmwood Housing had done in our community but it wasn’t until I started campaigning throughout the 8th Ward and began meeting with residents, renters, homeowners, and small businesses who spoke to me of their experiences with West Elmwood staff and programs. They shared their stories. Single moms who went from being renters in units developed by West Elmwood who later signed up for homebuyer classes and were able, with the help of the staff of West Elmwood to become homeowners. In my travels around the ward, I am consistently reminded of the work that West Elmwood has done throughout its history in the West End. The evidence is on almost every street, I can’t imagine what a very different place the West end would be without the commitment and hard work of the staff. As a community, we are not without our challenges and as the City Councilman from the 8th Ward, I am hopeful that with committed partners like West Elmwood we will meet these challenges head-on and build a better, safer more prosperous Community. It is an honor to win this award from West Elmwood Housing especially on their 50th Anniversary.