This page contains information about nominations and elections for the board of directors.
Community Room (first floor, near Wisconsin Avenue entrance)
814 W. Wisconsin Ave, Milwaukee
This meeting is open to the public but only 2019 Milwaukee CLT members can vote.
Elections occur in February. Nominations close 40-70 days prior to elections, at the discretion of the secretary. In general, you should submit nominations by December, but it doesn’t hurt to ask if nominations are still open in January. You must be current on your dues to make a nomination. You are encouraged to nominate yourself if you want to run.
Send your nominations to secretary@MilwaukeeCLT.org. Please include:
- The person’s name
- If this person lives in a CLT home
- If you are nominating yourself:
- A candidate statement: this will be posted to the website and should explain to everyone why they should vote for you. It should take about 2 minutes to read. At the elections, you will be given 2 minutes to speak and most people read their candidate statement.
- If you are nominating someone else:
- 1-2 sentences on why you think they would make a good board member (they work in housing, such as an electrician or real estate agent, they live in a neighborhood that faces housing challenges, they know what it’s like to have unstable housing, they are really interested in housing or CLTs, they are very organized, etc)
- How to reach this person so we can get a candidate statement from them
Don’t be shy about nominating yourself or anyone else who is interested!
Date of 2020 elections: February 25, 2020
Date nominations close: CLOSED as of January 10, 2020
Questions for a nominee? Send to chris@MilwaukeeCLT.org and I will forward to the nominee.
Thanks for considering me for a board member position on the Milwaukee Community Land Trust
(MCLT) Board of Directors. Below is some of my background as well as my views on community land
trusts and community wealth building generally.
I came of age in the 1960s and was heavily influenced by the civil rights and the anti-Viet Nam War
movements. Though these movements to address widespread racism and an immoral were powerful,
they ultimately failed to make the lasting changes needed for a more just society. The reasons for this
failure have become clearer as I navigated community and professional life.
I have worked over the years in the private, public and nonprofit sectors including small businesses,
labor unions, City of Milwaukee, large corporations and community-based organizations. Throughout all
these experiences my focus has been on building effective organizations and engaging both internal and
external audiences to ensure success.
Over the past eight years I served as a community organizer for Common Ground, an outreach specialist
for Milwaukee JobsWork and now as a community wealth building consultant for Walnut Way
Conservation Corp. It is in these three positions that I developed a deeper understanding of why our
society continues to generate so much inequality and related ills. I have come to learn that ineffective
programs or limited funding are not culprits but symptoms of economic and political systems that harm
the most and benefit the few. These systems are designed to control capital, whether monetary,
physical or social assets, in ways have generated historically high levels of inequality, especially among
but not exclusive to African American, Hispanic and Native American populations. If we really want to
address inequality, poverty and racism, we need to change the power dynamic that controls the flows of
That’s why community land trusts (CLTs) and other forms of community wealth building are so
important. As political economist Gar Alperovitz has asked, if we don’t like what corporate capitalism or
state socialism have produced through their control of capital, is there another way? His answer, and
one that I believe, is that one exists and it is based on increasing community ownership of capital that
generates more for the common good. Community land trusts (in addition to cooperatives, social
enterprises, public ownership, etc.) do just that. Through community ownership of land, residents and
neighbors are able to decide what gets built and for whom, and can address, for example, affordable
housing in a meaningful way. CLTs offer a proven way to change the ownership dynamic that has
plagued our economic and political life.
For these reasons, I’d like to help grow CLTs in Milwaukee and the MCLT Board seems like a great place
to do that. I bring a useful set of skills and experiences in building effective organizations and I would
like to apply these to one dedicated to change the way capital, in this case land, is owned and used.
I hope these few words provide an understanding of who I am and what I believe. I am glad to respond
to questions or comments.
Rusty (Russell) Borkin
Thank you for considering me to be a board member with Milwaukee Community Land Trust.
I always consider what I bring to the table to help an organization grow and build communities. Being an assistant with others who lead is important to me.
I believe I bring the experience of living directly in a community that has been lost or disregarded, as well as being a chair member of the Amani United organization which keeps me in contact with residents and their concerns.
I know there is a process that must be adhered to in any situation, but there is also a way to bypass or recreate a process to help our communities, our citizens.
I want to be a part of this board to be a part of the process for growth.