|The City of Moreno Valley is one of 35 Champion Cities selected today as finalists in the 2018 U.S. Mayors Challenge, a nationwide competition that encourages city leaders to uncover bold, inventive ideas that confront the toughest problems cities face. These 35 urban innovations rose to the top of a competitive pool of more than 320 applications. The Champion Cities will now begin a 6-month testing phase where they will conduct public prototypes of their ideas with grant funding of up to $100,000 per city, a new addition to the Competition this year. The Mayors Challenge returns to the U.S. as one of the first investments in the American Cities Initiative, a suite of new and expanded programs that will empower cities to generate innovation and advance policy
“Moreno Valley is a rapidly expanding, global City with a proven track record of applying innovation and creativity to deliver exceptional services to our residents, business owners, and visitors,” said Mayor Yxstian Gutierrez. “As soon as I learned about the Mayor’s Challenge at the 2017 United States Conference of Mayors, I recognized that Moreno Valley’s history of ingenuity and resourcefulness made it an ideal candidate to compete to become a 2018 Champion City. The unique opportunity provided to us by Bloomberg Philanthropies will mean that our residents will no longer have to choose between earning a living and receiving an education. They can have both. And our businesses will have ready access to an educated workforce. As Mayor, I am taking the bold steps necessary to lift up our residents and businesses and create the workforce of the future. I proudly accept the Mayor’s Challenge and I am humbled by this historic moment as our City is designated as a Champion City.”
Moreno Valley now advances to the six-month “Test, Learn, and Adapt” phase of the competition. Cities will refine their ideas during this process with up to $100,000, as well as personalized support from innovation experts, to test and begin building support for their urban innovations and submit a new application in August 2018. In October, four cities will receive $1 million awards and one will receive a grand prize of $5 million to bring their ideas to life.
“We received hundreds of bold and creative ideas from cities around the country in response to the 2018 Mayors Challenge, and these 35 really stood out for their potential to improve people’s lives. The next six months are a great opportunity for the cities to test their ideas and make them even more innovative and effective,” said Michael R. Bloomberg, founder of Bloomberg Philanthropies and three-term Mayor of New York City.
The 35 Champion Cities performed the best against four key criteria – vision, potential for impact, implementation plan, and potential to spread to other cities. A prestigious selection committee Co-Chaired by Former Ambassador Caroline Kennedy and Former Xerox Chairman & CEO Ursula Burns and comprising distinguished policy experts, artists, academics, business executives and social innovation leaders assessed the applications.
For the majority of Moreno Valley residents, formal education and career training stopped at high school, creating a barrier to advancement into positions with higher wages and greater opportunity. The City of Moreno Valley’s proposal will incentivize and support working adults to pursue education and technical training, allowing them to overcome the “earn vs. learn” dilemma and advance their skills while still providing for their families.
The 2018 Mayors Challenge builds on the success of previous Bloomberg-sponsored Challenges in the U.S. (2013), Europe (2014), and Latin America and the Caribbean (2016). For more information, visit mayorschallenge.bloomberg.org and @BloombergCities on Twitter and Instagram.
About Bloomberg Philanthropies
Bloomberg Philanthropies works in over 120 countries around the world to ensure better, longer lives for the greatest number of people. The organization focuses on five key areas for creating lasting change: Arts, Education, Environment, Government Innovation, and Public Health. Bloomberg Philanthropies encompasses all of Michael R. Bloomberg’s charitable activities, including his foundation and his personal giving. In 2016, Bloomberg Philanthropies distributed $600 million. For more information, please visit www.bloomberg.org or follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, and Twitter.