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Greater Tulsa Reporter


Stephanie Cameron Stays Busy with Civic Duties, Announces Street Cred 2017

By EMILY RAMSEY
Managing Editor

OK2GROW RECEIVES GRANT: On April 13, workforce development nonprofit OK2Grow accepted a $7,500 grant from ITC, the nation’s largest independent electricity transmission company. Pictured are OK2Grow founders Lynda Wingo, left, and Jerry Holder; OK2Grow State Director Stephanie Cameron; and Liz Hunt, ITC marketing and communications manager.


GTR Newspapers Photo


Editor’s Note: Tulsa’s Young Professionals 2017 Chair Stephanie Cameron is one of Greater Tulsa Reporter’s “10 People to Watch in 2017,” as announced in its January 2017 issue. GTR was the first news group in greater Tulsa to introduce “10 People to Watch,” which launched in January 2009. 

Tulsa’s Young Professionals played a key role in keeping 2017 Chair Stephanie Cameron in Tulsa after she moved to the city in 2008, and this year in particular, she is paying it forward.

“I only knew one person when I moved here,” Cameron says, a Georgia native. “TYPros helped me to understand Tulsa and to get plugged in and connect with other people who care about the city.”

Cameron also serves as Community Affairs Director for APSCO Manufacturing and State Director for Dream It Do It Oklahoma and OK2Grow a workforce development nonprofit organization.

Her focus as 2017 TYPros Chair is on “people, purpose and play,” she says.

“People” involves celebrating TYPros volunteers, because “they are the heart and soul of our organization;” attracting and retaining talent; and developing the next generation of leaders.

“Purpose” refers to Tulsa’s urban environment and the enhancement of Tulsans’ use of the city, she says.

The intention of “play” is to “showcase the city as a vibrant place,” she says, highlighting Tulsa’s potential and the many ways that the city can be enjoyed.

Cameron chose to focus on these three points during her year of leadership because they reflect the elements that most attracted her to TYPros, and they draw attention to the importance of TYPros’ volunteers because “they are at the core of why people are drawn to the organization,” she says.

Cameron’s year will also be heavily spent organizing TYPros’ most well-known and largest annual event: its urban revitalization program Street Cred, to be held Sunday, June 4, 11-4 p.m.

The event, to be called “Bridging the Brady,” will be held along Main Street in the Brady Arts District.

Since its inception, Street Cred has been held throughout various areas of the city that are in need of attention and revitalization, such as the Pearl District, 61st Street and Peoria Avenue, and Route 66.

“This is an event that I think has been able to really have some lasting impact on Tulsa,” Cameron says. “We’ve seen tangible results after Street Cred has taken place in these areas,” beginning with a heightened awareness that often, leads to increased development.

Street Cred 2017: Bridging the Brady will focus on how cities address highway infrastructure when it becomes a physical barrier. A local example of this is how Interstate 244 cuts through the northern end of the Brady Arts District, hindering its connection to the Brady Heights neighborhood and north Tulsa, says Cameron. “The overpass also creates a safety issue for pedestrians needing to walk under the overpass.

“This is a national topic; neighborhoods have created art installations and held concerts and shown interactive art under bridges to draw attention to this,” she continues.

The idea behind Street Cred is to show an area’s potential and provide temporary ideas in an effort to spur development projects, she says.

The event will involve Brady Arts District businesses and stakeholders, including the future OKPOP Museum, Oklahoma State University in Tulsa and 36 Degrees North. Lighting will be temporarily added under the bridge, and other beautification efforts will be made.

Because of discussions of future types of housing potentially being added to the district, lodging possibilities will be part of the event, such as Homma, a pop-up campsite company.

While the Brady district is arguably one of the most popular areas of downtown, TYPros chose the area for this year’s event largely due to its proximity to north Tulsa, she says. “Having a connection to north Tulsa is a critical component for community dialogue.”

Cameron’s additional focus areas for the year include increasing TYPros’ volunteer engagement with area nonprofits; the upcoming launch of a professional development series that will include information on career advancement, intentional networking and negotiating skills; and development of a new Bring It to Tulsa campaign.

Cameron’s time is also spent growing OK2Grow to foster greater local workforce development efforts and to improve Oklahoma’s high school graduation rates.

Recently, OK2Grow began working with the Oklahoma Education and Industry Partnership, in coordination with Tulsa Tech and Career Tech. This partnership will provide workshops for area teachers to educate them in the areas of manufacturing, healthcare and aerospace.

Cameron’s other community endeavors include involvement with the Tulsa Global Alliance, the Union Schools Education Foundation, the Rotary Club of Tulsa, the Oklahoma Academy, Leadership Oklahoma, the Tulsa Regional Chamber, ImpactTulsa, the TCC Signature Symphony, the Girl Scouts of Eastern Oklahoma, The Manufacturing Institute, the Hispanic American Foundation, the Center for Legislative Excellence, the State Chamber of Oklahoma, the Tulsa Area Manufacturer’s Association, and the Tulsa Regional Stem Alliance.

Cameron considers the timing of her arrival in Tulsa to be a bit serendipitous, as the BOK Center was still under construction and her first job being to provide workers for the event center’s construction.

With the momentum taking place currently around Tulsa and particularly downtown, she is especially grateful to have arrived when she did.

“It’s a great time to be in Tulsa.”

Updated 05-03-2017

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