People’s Liberty

People’s Liberty

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Some of the most creative minds in the nation call Cincinnati home. Bringing those minds together for a good cause is People’s Liberty.


According to Amy Goodwin, operations director at People’s Liberty, the organization brings together civic-minded talent to address challenges and uncover opportunities to accelerate the positive transformation of Greater Cincinnati.


“While traditional philanthropy typically involves a donor or foundation giving money to a designated nonprofit, we are investing directly in individuals through funding and mentorship, creating a new, replicable model for grant makers in other cities,” Goodwin explains. “There are people across the country who have the talent and individual skills to produce solutions to complicated problems. “People’s Liberty keeps the focus on Cincinnati to help accelerate finding solutions to problems.”


It all boils down to leveraging skills and problem solving for the betterment of the city, Goodwin explains. “Throughout the country, talented people are using their individual skills to produce innovative, civic solutions to complicated problems,” she adds. “People’s Liberty wants to give our local talent a leg up in doing just that. We want to accelerate problem solving.”


At People’s Liberty, they believe that the future of a city is determined by who gets involved, Goodwin says. “By enabling individuals with good ideas to give back to our community, we hope to create a more lively and engaged citizenry and, ultimately, a more vibrant city,” she adds.


The Haile Foundation and The Johnson Foundation are the two local entities behind the collaborative People’s Liberty. Eric Avner of Haile and Goodwin have spent the last year and a half building a team and the project of People’s Liberty.


The first grant-making program launched in July 2014, but their doors won’t officially open until Jan. 1, 2015. However, come January, The Johnson Foundation and Haile U.S. Bank Foundation will collectively award more than $400,000 in funding each year to local talent.


Goodwin says that even though People’s Liberty has yet to open, they’ve been overwhelmed with the positive support and interest the community has shown so far, making them even more excited about the future.


In the coming months, as People’s Liberty officially launches, Goodwin hopes that it will serve as an accelerator for the positive transformation that’s already underway in Cincinnati. “It will mean more creative talent moving here from out of town, more development in and around the urban core, more individuals who choose to stay in Cincinnati because it’s a place where their thoughts and ideas matter,” she says. “People’s Liberty will put Cincinnati at the forefront of philanthropic innovation and allow us to serve as an a national model for how engaged philanthropy can truly change outcomes.”


The team at People’s Liberty is looking for great ideas that can help positively transform Cincinnati. They want people to realize that they can help shape the future of the city by being active citizens.


People’s Liberty plans to invest in individuals in the next five years. Because funding is often the biggest barrier when it comes to bringing innovative ideas to a reality, giving a greater investment to the citizens who live in Cincinnati will help to quickly advance projects that have the potential to be transformative.


To learn more about People’s Liberty, visit