From COE 2026 Board Chair Lowell Kruse: Local Graduation Rates Recognized from the St Jospeh Community Press. If we want to improve the health of a population, create jobs, reduce crime, increase the quality of life or accomplish anything of significance in a community, it's starts with educational attainment. And we can't truly improve educational attainment unless the entire community comes together to help make it happen. It requires a stainable, long term effort supported by everyone in a community as described in the above article about St Joseph, Missouri and its 30 year effort to dramatically improve its high school graduation rates.
From San Diego County's South Region Live Well San Diego pilot: Two weeks ago Communities of Excellence 2026 was formally introduced to the South Region Live Well San Diego Regional Leadership Team by HHSA Director Barbara Jimenez and her team. This was not the first time the Communities of Excellence Framework was presented to the Leadership Team but it was the first real conversation. The converstaion started with an introduction to Baldrige as few of the community partners were familiar with the Baldrige Framework. After a presentation on COE by Barbara, her team faciliated a series of questions to the group aimed at better understanding their priorities and vision for a community of excellence. Two themes that emerged: more resident engagement and more involvement from the business community.
From Northwest Missouri pilot contact Steve Wenger: Regional Vitality receives financial support from the Community Information DataMart, Inc. (CID). In 2000 CID was created to “help communities make better, faster, smarter decisions”. Further, CID and its board understood that its operating model needed to change, and a good way to advance its mission is to support the NWMO Regional Vitality Initiative, which is designed to enhance entrepreneurship and business development in the region via much improved decision support and system leadership, in order to “make better, faster, smarter decisions”. Regional Vitality is supported by the Community Foundation of Northwest Missouri and is employing a new community based Malcom Baldrige National Quality Award criteria called Communities of Excellence 2026. The CID board believes that a systematic approach to leadership and decision support will advance their mission better than their current state. As a result the CID board voted to dissolve its corporation and invest existing assets including $42,000 cash, website domain nwmoinfo.org, and information presently housed on the site to Regional Vitality.
I hope that you will continue to follow our progress in our San Diego County and Northwest Missouri pilot communities.
If you haven’t already, please view the Communities of Excellence Framework on our website. We welcome your comments!