Volunteer Initiatives Program
About Cities of Service
Founded in New York on September 10, 2009 by Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and the mayors of 16 other cities, Cities of Service is a bipartisan coalition of mayors who have answered the historic Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act’s call to action. Representing more than 46 million Americans in 100 cities, all coalition members have signed a “Declaration of Service,” committing to work together to lead a multi-year effort to expand community service and volunteerism by:
- Developing a comprehensive service plan and a coordinated strategy focused on matching volunteers and established community partners to the areas of greatest local need;
- Working with other mayors and elected officials to advance strategies and best practices that accelerate the service movement and produce measurable results;
- Encouraging other mayors to join this national effort to engage our citizens; and
- Ensuring that the voice of cities is heard in federal legislative, policy, and program discussions related to service, which will help the country achieve the ambitious goals of the Serve America Act.
The coalition has rapidly grown since its inception in September and now includes more than 100 mayors representing more than 47 million Americans across the nation.
About Cities of Service Leadership Grants
The first round of Cities of Service Leadership Grant winners were announced in January 2010. The selected cities, which have all appointed Chief Service Officers, were Chicago, IL; Detroit, MI; Los Angeles, CA; Nashville, TN; Newark, NJ; Omaha, NE; Philadelphia, PA; Sacramento, CA; Savannah, GA; and Seattle, WA. These ten cities will launch comprehensive service plans this fall to address problems of critical in need in their communities.
The second round of Cities of Service Leadership Grant winners were announced in June 2010. In addition to Houston, grants were awarded to Austin, TX; Atlanta, GA; Baltimore, MD; Baton Rouge, LA; Chula Vista, CA; Little Rock, AR; Orlando, FL; Pittsburgh, PA; and Richmond, VA.
Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg appointed the nation’s first Chief Service Officer, Diahann Billings-Burford, in June 2009.