Strengthening Communities for a Lifetime

Goal: North Carolinians will live in communities, neighborhoods, and homes that support thriving at all stages and ages. This workgroup focuses on creating inclusive and age-friendly communities by identifying strategies and initiatives that address housing, transportation, social engagement, healthcare access, and community services.


  1. Housing and Universal Design (Chair: Carissa Johnson): Expand and strengthen housing options while addressing homelessness through initiatives such as affordable housing programs, supportive services, and homelessness prevention strategies. 
  2. Transportation and Accessibility (Co-chairs: Nancy Leonard and Katie Kutcher): Improve transportation resources and accessibility for all community members, including enhancing public transportation systems, promoting active transportation (cycling, walking), and ensuring access for people with disabilities.
  3. Community Safety and Protection (Chair: Cynthia Banks): Enhance community safety by implementing measures such as crime prevention programs, neighborhood watch initiatives, and providing resources for disaster preparedness and emergency response. 
  4. Social Connection, Inclusion, and Broadband (Chair: Mackenzie Patak): Combat social isolation by developing programs and activities that foster social connections among community members, especially vulnerable populations, and promote inclusivity and diversity.
  5. 5. Food Security and Nutrition (Chair: Christi Mallasch): Ensure food security by addressing food deserts, promoting access to healthy and affordable food options, and supporting initiatives such as community gardens, food banks, and nutrition education. 

Note: Environmental Sustainability  will be a guiding principle for all subgroups; environmental sustainability will look at  climate-friendly initiatives by promoting energy efficiency, renewable energy adoption, waste reduction, and sustainable practices in community planning and development. 

Workgroup Co-Leads: Dr. Deryl Fulmer and Janice Tyler