A look at the evolution of the National Urban Fellows organization
National Urban Fellows began as an experiment during a time when the country’s urban centers were in crisis. Urban America struggled to cope with pervasive violence and social unrest, representing the outcome of years of social injustice. Communities throughout the U.S. were challenged by the results of discrimination, segregation, poverty, unemployment, poor housing, and police brutality. Contemporary leaders asked, “Could minorities lead effectively in urban government?”
In the aftermath of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr, NUF founder Frank Logue, then Mayor of New Haven, CT brought together leaders of four institutions: The National League of Cities, the U.S. Conference of Mayors, New Haven’s Community Action Institute, and Yale University to give individuals from communities of color an opportunity to showcase all they could accomplish when placed in city government leadership roles. In 1969, with a seed grant from the Ford Foundation, the National Urban Fellows (NUF) was established.
Since its founding, NUF has yielded thousands of leaders in elected office, government, nonprofit and philanthropy. See our Alumni Highlights to learn more.