IMPACT Silver Spring was founded in 1999 during the revitalization of downtown Silver spring as it transitioned from a mostly white suburb into an extremely diverse urban area. IMPACT was founded by a group of activist residents led by Frankie Blackburn who wanted to ensure that racially, culturally, and socio-economically diverse interests and voices were included in the redevelopment process.
After years of deep community work, our mission has evolved to focus more explicitly on revealing and dismantling racial inequity and lack of economic opportunity -- root causes of community disintegration. During this time, IMPACT has explored different approaches to grassroots community-building including leadership trainings, place-based organizing, door-knocking, and network-building. We know that the complex social problems we're tackling require experimentation, innovation, and emergence (the ability to learn what works in practice, be agile, and change as needed).
Today, IMPACT's focus is on building a racially and economically equitable Montgomery County. We believe this requires transformation that starts with the individual and interpersonal, and cycles up to neighborhood and systems-level transformation.