Home San Diego Press Releases 2013 FBI Director’s Community Leadership Award Presented to the Jacobs Center for Neighborhood Innovation

FBI Director’s Community Leadership Award Presented to the Jacobs Center for Neighborhood Innovation

FBI San Diego April 08, 2013
  • Darrell Foxworth (858) 320-8302

San Diego FBI Special Agent in Charge Daphne Hearn is pleased to announce the Jacobs Center for Neighborhood Innovation as a recipient of the 2012 Director’s Community Leadership Award (DCLA). The Jacobs Center was selected due to their commitment to reducing crime in Southeastern San Diego, providing positive opportunities for youth, and improving communication between community members and law enforcement. The Jacobs Center’s mission, “Resident Ownership of Neighborhood Change,” is based on the principle that residents must envision, drive, and own change in their community to make it meaningful and sustainable. To that end, the Jacobs Center works directly with community members in Southeastern San Diego to promote public safety and ultimately to revitalize the neighborhood.

The Jacobs Center runs several successful programs under its Start with Safety Initiative, including Project Safeway, Writerz Blok, and Coming Home to Stay. Project Safeway organizes a “safe talk” campaign that encourages local residents to speak directly with police and also runs a “safe corridors” program that puts volunteers at strategic street corners to establish safe routes for children to walk to and from school. Project Safeway brings together a variety of organizations and agencies for community-wide safety events, such as the 2012 Youth Safety Fair, to provide community members with valuable crime prevention resources. The Jacobs Center’s Writerz Blok program is an urban art park program aimed at turning “taggers” into artists. Coming Home to Stay, a prisoner re-entry program at the Jacobs Center, is intended to reduce recidivism of ex-offenders.

Jacobs Center Community Coordinators are leaders from diverse Southeastern San Diego communities. Their grassroots efforts include going door to door in the surrounding neighborhoods to share crime prevention information and encourage participation in safety events. They provide a voice for their communities at working groups such as the Law Enforcement-Somali Community Roundtable and IDOL, a group focused on combating child prostitution.

“I am honored to recognize the Jacobs Center with this award. They have demonstrated how an organization can work with residents to build a safer, more stable community. I appreciate the Jacobs Center’s partnership with the FBI on crime prevention programs and salute their tireless efforts to combat violence in Southeast San Diego,” said SAC Daphne Hearn. “They have helped make San Diego a safer place for future generations.”

Jacobs Center employees attended a ceremony on January 8, at which SAC Hearn presented the DCLA certificate to Reginald Jones, president and CEO of the Jacobs Center. The Jacobs Center accepted the award from FBI Director Robert S. Mueller, III at FBI Headquarters in Washington, D.C. on April 5.

“Whatever the motivation—an unfilled need, a tragic occurrence, a desire to give back—these are people who make things happen and enlist others in their cause,” said Director Mueller. “They are activists who have earned their prestige through good works.”

For inquiries regarding the FBI Director’s Community Leadership Award, please contact Erin MacKinnon (FBI) at 858-499-7464. For more information about the Jacobs Center for Neighborhood Innovation, please contact Renee Novo (Jacobs Center) at 619-527-6161 ext.162.

Pictured left to right: Danny Gutierrez, Jacobs Center Community Coordinator, FBI Special Agent in Charge Daphne Hearn, Rhamo Abdi, Jacobs Center Community Coordinator, and Reginald Jones, President and CEO of the Jacobs Center for Neighborhood Innovation and the Jacobs Family Foundation