Bringing the Southeast Crescent Regional Commission into Action


Ava Gabrielle Wise stands at what she hopes one day will become an innovation park for her community in Northampton. (Credit: Pamela D’Angelo)

Every year since 2008, Congress has authorized more than $30 million in funding to spur economic development in a region referred to as the “Black Belt.”

The region extends through seven states from Virginia to Mississippi and includes the largest concentration of historically black communities in the rural South. Most are economically deprived, a result of slavery and Jim Crow laws.

There are more than 50 Virginia counties that could benefit. But the money never came. Now, one Eastern Shore woman is on a crusade to get it.

Pamela D’Angelo reports.

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