Blog NKCDC Introducing NKCDC’s new economic development team

NKCDC is excited to be hiring a bunch of new staff in new positions. Here’s a special welcome to our new economic development team.

NKCDC provides free consultation, technical assistance and resources to small businesses, artists and entrepreneurs in Port Richmond, Kensington and Fishtown. Visit nkcdc.org/business-arts, email info@nkcdc.org, or call 215-427-0350 for small business support!

Nicole Westerman

Director of Real Estate and Economic Development

Nicole Westerman previously served as Executive Director of Rebuild, a City of Philadelphia program to renovate parks, recreation centers, and libraries while engaging with neighborhood residents, building the capacity of businesses owned by people of color and women, and preparing low-income Philadelphians for careers in construction.  From 2010 to 2012, she worked for the CFO of the School District of Philadelphia, focused on equity and transparency in school budgets. From 2005 to 2008, she served as the Chief of Staff to the Budget Secretary of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania representing the Secretary on multiple boards and commissions and working on multiple financial projects. From 2000 to 2005, she worked at Public Financial Management, working on multi-year financial plans for cities and counties experiencing financial stress. Nicole earned a Master of Government Administration from the University of Pennsylvania and a Bachelor of Architecture from the Rhode Island School of Design.

Gloria Cartagena

Commercial Corridor Manager

Gloria (Smooches) is a familiar face to many people. She has been an active block leader and Certified Community Health Worker, as well as president of Somerset Neighbors for Better Living neighborhood association. In March, she helped organize the protest that reopened the Somerset El stop, and recently she has been working with NKCDC and Philadelphia Scenic Works to create a new Butterfly Garden on Somerset Street. In 2018 she won the Dorothy Richardson Resident Leadership Award from our national partners Neighborworks America.

Gloria Cartagena

Lee Nentwig

Commercial Corridor Manager

Lee Nentwig began working with NKCDC’s economic development team as an AmeriCorps VISTA volunteer. He organized an online holiday market, convened monthly business meetups, and launched a small business text alert service (text “nkcdcsmallbiz” to 833-901-2072 to sign up). His work was so good that NeighborWorks America gave him a shout out on Instagram this spring.

“Serving at NKCDC has been an extraordinary experience!” Lee said. “I’m inspired by the people I work with every day and I’m learning so much from them all.” 

Anthony Miller

Economic Development and Housing Resilience Coordinator

Anthony Miller has served NKCDC as an AmeriCorps VISTA volunteer for the past two years, working with neighborhood civic associations. In this new postion, he will expand the capacity of the corridor management team, and serve homeowners as they receive free home repairs from Rebuilding Together Philadelphia

Anthony has significant experience in zoning and community organizing around affordable development. Previously, he also supported business customers at an independent financial institution, and earned a degree in economics with honors from the University of Kansas. 

Corridor Stewards—the rest of the team!

One of the ongoing services NKCDC provides is commercial corridor cleaning. NKCDC’s Corridor Stewards are outside five days a week, year-round, to sweep, pick up trash, repair street furniture, clean graffiti, and report violations along local business corridors. Thanks to funding from the city’s PHL Taking Care of Business program, NKCDC cleans Somerset Street (Frankford to Kensington), Lehigh Avenue (Kensington to Richmond), and all of the underpasses along Lehigh Avenue. The stewards are also contracted by Fishtown District to clean Frankford Avenue from Lehigh to Delaware.

If you are a local small business, artist or entrepreneur, reach out to Lee or Gloria for grants, financing, city services, and free consultation. Visit nkcdc.org/business-arts, email info@nkcdc.org, or call 215-427-0350.

Sign up for two NKCDC Holiday Markets

  • Frankford & Somerset Street Holiday Market
    On Saturday, December 4, 2021, NKCDC will host an in-person holiday market on the corner of Frankford Avenue and Somerset Street The event will feature local gift vendors, food, and live music!
     
  • Online Holiday Market
    Like last year’s successful market, NKCDC will host an online holiday market on our website, nkcdc.org, from Saturday November 27 – December 31, 2021. 

Vendors who are interested in participating in either market can register via this form. There is a $10 vending fee for the online market and $15 vending fee for the in-person market. Tables will not be supplied, but if anyone needs help acquiring one, they can reach out to Lee or Gloria at info@nkcdc.org, or call 215-427-0350.