Marie M. Anderson
Loyola University Maryland York Road Initiative
Marie M. Anderson, 26, describes herself as a leader at the back of the crowd.
“The end goal is to build community, and hopefully I just make it a little bit easier to do so,” she said.
Anderson is assistant director of the Loyola University Maryland York Road Initiative, a community development strategy focused on the York Road corridor adjacent to Loyola’s campus.
Driving down York Road, the communities offer different pictures – to the west, middle- to high-income families and a mostly Caucasian population, and to the east, middle- to low-income families and seniors, most of whom are African American.
To unite these communities, Anderson creates connections between the campus and York Road neighbors. For instance, in October the Fresh Crate Healthy Corner Store program brought fresh food to four businesses in Govans locations where there wasn’t access to supermarkets. The program used Loyola’s dining service as the ordering hub for produce.
Anderson also helped lead the BMore Birds Mural Initiative and manages the Govanstowne Farmers Market. Anderson helped organize the York Road United Peace March for the anniversary of Freddie Gray’s death. In addition, she serves on the Maryland Farmers Market Association Advisory Committee, Baltimore City Food Policy Advisory Council and the York Road Partnership.
“I hope that this will draw attention to the folks who need their voices heard, the voices of the community that will be lifted up and the needs of folks in our city who aren’t always heard,” Anderson said.