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Hometown pride for state capitol neighborhoods

Posted September 22, 2014 in Downtown, Community Web Exclusives

Keep Iowa Beautiful (KIB) has partnered with  two Capitol neighborhoods, Capitol East and MLK Jr. Park, in a five year program called Hometown Pride.

Beth Hicks has been hired to serve as Community Coach for the Capitol Neighborhoods.  “Hometown Pride is designed to assist these neighborhoods by providing long-term technical and professional coaching assistance over five years,” said Hicks.  “The effort is supported with leadership training, youth service learning and educational components as well as a tool box of solutions for development.”

Beth brings with her more than 20 years of environmental and community building experience in the private, public and nonprofit sectors.  She recently started a new business, Urban Community Concepts, that provides project management and grant writing focused on sustainability, community development and urban agriculture.  Previously, Beth was a Program Manager at Rebuilding Together Greater Des Moines and the Director of Advancement Services for Keep Iowa Beautiful. Beth is a co-founder of Center on Sustainable Communities (COSC) and serves on its board of directors.  Beth, her husband and two teenage daughters lives in a historic neighborhood in Des Moines where they raise backyard chickens and grow fruits and vegetables.

“We are very excited to have Beth as our community coach,” said Odell Jenkins, Chair of the Neighborhood Steering Committee.  “She will be very helpful in working with community partners on how we can be a vital and attractive part of the Capitol area and the city of Des Moines.”

“Many Iowa communities are facing the issue of survival,” said Gerry Schnepf, Executive Director of KIB.  “They need long term help in building the future of their community,” he added.  “The results are improved quality of life, increased cultural and economic vitality resulting in more community pride.”

Capitol Neighborhoods Hometown Pride in Des Moines is funded by Keep Iowa Beautiful, the city and each neighborhood.  KIB’s Hometown Pride Program started two years ago in Pocahontas County.  In 2013 Freemont County was added and recently Louisa County.  33 communities and 3 counties are now participating in Hometown Pride.   


About Keep Iowa Beautiful

Keep Iowa Beautiful was established in 2000 becoming the 23rd State Affiliate of Keep America Beautiful.   It is a 501c3 charitable organization working with Iowa citizens, neighborhoods, communities and regions in improving the quality, beauty and cleanliness of our State.  KIB empowers Iowan’s to have a greater commitment in building pride and respect in the places we live. For additional information, visit


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