Meet Floyd R. Davis, Jr.
— In this series, we highlight the work of our partners in our Opportunity Movement and share their vision for Charlotte’s future.
Meet our Opportunity Champion, Floyd R. Davis, Jr, President & CEO of Community Link!
Leading on Opportunity: What is your vision for economic mobility in Charlotte-Mecklenburg?
Floyd R. Davis, Jr.: At Community Link, we know affordable housing is the foundation of economic mobility. We help families obtain and sustain safe, decent, affordable housing. We strive to help our customers move up the economic ladder no matter where they are. Some are homeless; others may need financial literacy education and counseling to become the first in their family to purchase a home.
Our vision for economic mobility is to help solve the affordable housing issue in Charlotte and surrounding counties. Right now, we are particularly concerned about the crisis facing homeless children. Common sense and research tell us that children do better in school in a secure home than when they are homeless.
Our community must make it a priority to house families with homeless kids and teens, starting with the very youngest children. One of our goals for the ourselves and the community is to house every family with a child enrolled in a pre-K program. House those children and they will have a much better chance at succeeding in kindergarten and the crucial elementary school years.
Leading on Opportunity: What does opportunity mean to you?
Floyd R. Davis, Jr.: Opportunity means that kids in Charlotte-Mecklenburg have the tools to succeed. As the Leading on Opportunity report indicated, the key forces influencing whether children will have what they need are early care and education, family stability, college and career readiness, plus access to social capital.
Leading on Opportunity: How does Leading on Opportunity’s North Star Goal inspire and connect to your work?
Floyd R. Davis, Jr.: The North Star Goal aligns with our work perfectly, as we focus upon creating family stability. As an example, we recently received funding from Mecklenburg County to help families with children in Title 1 schools who live in week-to-week hotels. We work to find them safer, more appropriate family housing.
We are on the scene in challenging housing situations involving children which get a lot of attention, like Lake Arbor Apartments, and many that get no public attention at all. In every instance, Community Link aims to help families have greater opportunities for economic success.
Moving Charlotte from 50 out of 50 in economic mobility is a collaborative, community effort. With that in mind, we set a goal to build an Opportunity Movement that celebrates everyone's contributions. On March 26, 2019, we honored 50 Inaugural Opportunity Champions who have gone above and beyond to support implementation and align to one or more of our 21 community-inspired strategies within the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Opportunity Task Force Report. Often without any public recognition, this group of distinguished leaders set the bar high for others in our community to invest in building a stronger equitable community for all children, youth and families.