New Orleans made the first round of cities that will ultimately be selected by the Rockefeller Foundation for its 100 Resilient Cities Centennial Challenge. The international non-profit says New Orleans offers more than just water management ideas.
Rockefeller Foundation spokesman Michael Berkowitz says New Orleans clearly belongs on the list.
“We know that New Orleans really understands resilience," he said. "We know that New Orleans is keen to collaborate.”
He says Mayor Mitch Landrieu demonstrated the city’s willingness to swap ideas. At a foundation event he spoke with Colombian officials about containing street violence — one of many issues under the resilience umbrella.
“What makes a city resilient? It’s around healthy communities," Berkowitz said. "It’s around flexible workforces. It’s around efficient transportation — all of those things that make cities able to cope with the next disaster, whatever it is.”
The foundation is not only fostering conversations. It’s also funding a city staff position for two years. The Chief Resilience Officer will coordinate with other cities around the world.
No word yet from the city on when that position will be filled.