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New website features testimonials for people of color considering a move to Vermont

first_imgPeople of color considering a move to Vermont can now access a website to learn about the experiences of others who have moved to the Champlain Valley Region of Vermont. The website, www.iamavermonter.org(link is external), is funded by KeyBank and features testimonials from individuals who have moved to Vermont over the past twenty years. Testimonials describe personal experiences before and after a move, and tips for making the transition work for spouses and family. The Lake Champlain Regional Chamber of Commerce’s website will feature a link to iamavermonter.org(link is external).“iamavermonter.org(link is external)” was conceived in 2009 by Dr Dan Balón who at the time was diversity director at the Burlington Schools.  Dan passed away in January, 2013.  He aspired to bring more people of color to the Champlain Valley to help diversify the region’s and state’s work forces.  According to the US Census, Vermont is 95% white; the City Burlington is 87.3% white.“We cannot hope to expand Vermont’s economy in the absence of attracting talent in the multi-cultural marketplace,” said Curtiss Reed, Executive Director at Vermont Partnership for Fairness & Diversity in Brattleboro. “The iamavermonter website sends a clear and unambiguous message to the rest of the country that our state is open for business,” he said.Thirteen residents of the Champlain Valley area are featured, including Tracy Griffith, Associate Professor of Media Studies, Journalism & Digital Arts at St. Michael’s College, and Hal Colston, founder of Good News Garage and recipient of the 2014 Vermonter of the Year award from the Burlington Free Press.  The website features only testimonials.  It is not designed to list employment opportunities.If you’re a person of color with a story you’d like to share, please send them to [email protected](link sends e-mail) for consideration.last_img

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