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January 23, 2015

Ten Cities that Shaped the U.S. Civil Rights Movement
On March 25, 1965, thousands of nonviolent demonstrators marched from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama to support voting rights. Today, Selma is home to the National Voting Rights Museum and the path of the marchers is a National Historic Trail. Other cities which played a role in the U.S. Civil Rights Movement include Little Rock, Arkansas; Chicago, Illinois; Washington, D.C.; Detroit, Michigan; Greensboro, North Carolina; Harlem, New York; Birmingham and Montgomery, Alabama; and Memphis, Tennessee.

Economic Impact of Illinois Fairs 
A study conducted by the University of Illinois Extension in partnership with the Illinois Agricultural Fairs Association reports that $170 million was spent as a result of the 104 fairs held in Illinois in 2014. In addition, key informant interviews revealed that these fairs contribute to the culture, unity and tradition of the communities they serve. County fair boards across the state are addressing challenges but the economic and social impact is significant throughout Illinois. The study was conducted at 15 fairs across the state, with surveys being collected by 4-H youth under the supervision of Extension staff, and key informant interviews conducted by Alex Norr, a graduate student from University of Illinois Department of Urban and Regional Planning.  

U.S. cities now have more people working than when the recession began in December 2007 — 1.8 million more, to be precise. Rural America, however, has yet to recover. There are 556,000 fewer jobs in rural counties in November 2014 than in the same month seven years ago, just before the recession officially started. The map above from the Daily Yonder site shows rural and urban counties and whether a county has more (or fewer) people employed now than in November 2007. Rural counties are those that lie outside of a metropolitan area. Urban counties are those that are included within metro regions.

The Community Connect program serves rural communities where broadband service is least likely to be available, but where it can make a tremendous difference in the quality of life for citizens. The projects funded by these grants will help rural residents tap into the enormous potential of the Internet. The following entities are eligible for funding: Incorporated Organizations; Indian Tribes or Tribal Organizations, as defined in 25 U.S.C. 450b(e); State or local units of government; or Cooperatives, private corporations or limited liability companies organized on a for-profit or not-for-profit basis. The application window for Fiscal Year 2015 is now open. Applications must be submitted no later than February 17, 2015 to be considered for an award.


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