Founding board member and board President
Mordecai Cargill is a co-founder and partner of the ThirdSpace Action Lab, a grassroots research, strategy & design cooperative, dedicated to prototyping creative place-based solutions to complex socioeconomic problems. Mordecai is a community + institutional organizer, committed to Activating Space + Activating People. His personal, professional + intellectual pursuits converge in an unwavering belief in the creative potential of everyday people.
Founding board member
Deborah was born and raised in Hough, where her father was the first Black homeowner in the neighborhood. She is a founding board member of The BC Block Club, a group that is restoring Hough's legacy and reimagining its future, and President of St. Paul AME Zion Church Credit Union, a Black-owned financial institution founded in 1956.
Founding board member and board Treasurer
Michael is a co-founder of Rust Belt Riders, an organization dedicated to transforming regional food systems through the creation of value-added products derived from locally squandered resources to build a circular economy that improves food security and combats climate change. When he's not making compost with the RBR crew Michael spends his time reading, fermenting foods, and taking early morning walks around the neighborhood.
Adam Drue King is a technologist and creative whose work focuses on digital access, equity, inclusion and innovation as means for community and economic development in northeastern Ohio and beyond.
Indigo is a social worker and facilitator from Cleveland Ohio, where she has been working in community development since 2008. Indigo teaches both nationally and locally; equipping practitioners across the country with innovative community building techniques. Today, Indigo works for the Cuyahoga Metropolitan Housing Authority as their Choice Neighborhood Administrator where she manages strategic neighborhood investments.
Michael S. Russell works as a lawyer for the Legal Aid Society of Cleveland, where he represents community groups, nonprofits, and cooperatives as part of Legal Aid’s Community Engagement Practice Group. He strives to use community lawyering principles to support low-income people organizing to build collective power, wealth, and community in the solidarity economy. And he is very excited about similar work happening throughout Ohio. He moved to Northeast Ohio with his partner and their two kids in 2015. Mike is a graduate of UC Hastings College of the Law and the Gallatin School at New York University. He likes records and misses the Chihuahuan desert.
Dawn N. Mayes is the Director of Design Entrepreneurship and Inclusion at Kent StateUniversity, where she creates viable pipelines for HBCU students to attend graduate school, provides technical assistance to startup diverse Architecture firms including Black, Hispanic, Native American, and the Asian population, and brings lectures to the university to bring awareness to Design Entrepreneurship and Diversity. As a serial entrepreneur Dawn shares one of her natural born talents to promote healing communities. Her company, Designs by Danico is her online store that sells her original artwork on canvas. Her tagline: “Healing People and Places Through Art” allows her creative space to empower her audience. Her original works include intentional color selections, the use of symbolism, and Reiki to share messages of self-healing, self-care and empowerment.Dawn grew up in the suburbs of Cleveland, Ohio. She is an Army veteran, an artist, an entrepreneur, a proud Florida A & M University graduate, where she received her Bachelors of Architectural Studies, and an alumna of Kent State University where she received her Masters in Architecture with a Certificate in Urban Design. In early 2022, she was also awarded an Artist Residency for Karamu House’s Resident in the House program. She is a charter member of the Greater Cleveland Chapter of FAMU National Alumni Association and serves as the chapter President.