LITTLE ROCK, Ark., March 22 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation, in conjunction with the Brookings Institution, a nonprofit public policy organization, will host a day-long consultative session in Washington, D.C. on Tuesday March 25 to explore how Arkansas can most effectively take full advantage of the federal economic stimulus package and related incentives. The strategic session, titled "Moving the Needle toward Economic Well-Being," is a part of the Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation's ongoing effort to fight poverty in Arkansas. Expected to participate are a group of national policy leaders, along with several key Arkansas leaders. The session will discuss how to most effectively leverage federal economic stimulus policy for the improvement of lives in Arkansas. "Poverty is blind to the differences between red (Republican) and blue (Democratic) states - it is everywhere," Dr. Sherece West, President of the Foundation, said. "Poverty is a state of purple. This session is just one way that the Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation is working to bring leaders together for a candid discussion on specific actions Arkansans can take to better themselves and their families and continue the fight to reduce poverty." The Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation's mission is to improve the quality of life for all Arkansans through economic development, education, and economic, racial, and social justice. With a 34-year record of commitment and accomplishment, the Foundation knows that federal policies and programs have a major impact on the future of Arkansas residents and the state's economy. Specifically, economic development is the key to being competitive and improving lives in the 21st century's "new economy." Based on data from the Corporation for Enterprise Development:
-- Arkansas earned an "F" grade on financial assets and opportunities -- Arkansas received a "D" grade in financial security and business development; and -- Arkansas earned a "C" grade in home ownership (with one of the highest bankruptcy rates) "These indicators are simply unacceptable," Dr. West said. "Our Foundation understands that Arkansans have a monumental task in addressing persistent poverty, but we firmly believe that our state must 'move the needle' away from these indicators and toward economic well being. This important session is a step in the right direction." "Moving the Needle toward Economic Well-Being" is the first in a year-long series of campaign advocacy and outreach events sponsored by the Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation. Other events include a "Moving the Needle in Education Consultation Session" in Little Rock, Ark. in July; participation in the White House Summit on Inner City and Faith-Based Schools this spring; as well as "Moving the Needle" presentations at the National Conference of State Legislators in New Orleans in July, the Congressional Black Caucus Legislative Conference in Washington D.C. in September, and the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Legislative Conference in Washington D.C. in October. The Brookings Institution is a nonprofit public policy organization based in Washington, D.C. Their mission is to conduct high-quality, independent research and, based on that research, to provide innovative, practical recommendations that advance three broad goals:
-- Strengthen American democracy -- Foster the economic and social welfare, security and opportunity of all Americans, and -- Secure a more open, safe, prosperous and cooperative international system Since 1974, the Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation has supported programs and organizations that improve the quality of life for all Arkansans and that promote systemic change. In committing itself to this mission, the Foundation continues the progressive, cutting-edge visionary work that Arkansas Gov. Rockefeller undertook in his personal life and philanthropy.
SOURCE Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation