NEIGHBORHOOD PROGRESS INC. is a nonprofit agency designed to focus attention, dollars, and resources on Cleveland's neighborhood development projects, with an emphasis on housing. The organization was created in 1988 by CLEVELAND TOMORROW and area foundations. Neighborhood Progress is funded by the foundations and in turn distributes much of the available foundation money to neighborhood development organizations.
The goals of Neighborhood Progress, Inc., are to support neighborhood development groups and to set priorities for money and attention to be spent in city neighborhoods. The organization provides technical assistance, constructions subsidies and loans, and grants for projects. The Board of Directors includes representatives from the City of Cleveland, foundations, corporations, and neighborhood groups. In Feb. 1991 Neighborhood Progress received the CLEVELAND FOUNDATION's largest grant ever to a single organization for the purpose of neighborhood revitalization—$3 million over 2 years, two-thirds of which was to help finance housing and commercial revitalization, while the remaining third was used to support neighborhood development organizations. By 1993 the Cleveland Foundation had provided $5.1 million to the organization.
Tom Cox, executive director of the organization since 1989, left in Nov. 1993. Eric E. Hoddersen, a native of Seattle, became executive director in May 1994. By this time Neighborhood Progress had invested $45 million in the city and leveraged an additional $100 million, resulting in the construction or repair of 1,800 housing units and 570,000 sq. ft. of commercial space.