Mission & Vision

NACEDA’s mission is to lead the community development field and its partners in shaping and influencing strategies that advance community prosperity. 

Our theory of change is that a stronger, more unified community development field will lead to stronger, healthier, more prosperous communities for those who live there − and that neighborhoods thrive where there are strong networks of community actors. Our members embody those networks.

We believe that successful community economic development:

  • Begins in many different places depending on a community’s history and context − the key is to start!
  • Is rooted in the themes of social justice while remaining culturally, ethnically, and racially relevant
  • Emphasizes a comprehensive role of place, drawing on all parts of a community, particularly low and moderate-income people and places.
  • Requires long-term commitment
  • Attracts private investment
  • Engages local institutions and residents that lead and own local change
  • Builds and supports the voices of local leaders who understand both the needs and assets in their communities and have the wisdom to create local, regional, state and national policy solutions.

Across the United States, community development corporations (CDCs) provide the expertise, experience, and practical tools that get this work done.