For 35 years, Janet has helped community leaders, organizations and policymakers across the country find, create and spread development strategies that work. At CSG since 1993, Topolsky has specialized in peer-learning design and facilitation, family asset building, connecting low-wealth rural and urban places and populations to regional economic development and better livelihoods, and community development philanthropy – building the capacity of place-rooted foundations to improve local economies. Before Aspen, Janet worked as a development policy analyst; as communications director for the Corporation for Enterprise Development (recently renamed Prosperity Now) and editor of CFED’s Entrepreneurial Economy Review; as special assistant to the Michigan Department of Commerce director; and as a youth organizer and policy advocate. A native of Detroit, Michigan, Janet is a graduate of James Madison College at Michigan State University and holds a Masters of Public Policy from the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy at the University of Michigan. In her spare time, she unashamedly watches good television, concocts cheesecake on demand, and joyfully sings alto (every week for 30 years!) in the world-renowned St. Augustine Gospel Choir.
Authored by Janet
Community DevelopmentRural Frontlines and COVID-19Turn on the radio or TV. Open a newspaper or website. COVID-19 is front and center. What’s harder to grasp is the health and economic effects of our shared crisis on rural regions and tribal nations across the United States.
Community DevelopmentOutstanding on Rural GroundThe Institute’s Community Strategies Group inspires local leaders to make rural America healthy and prosperous.
BY Janet Topolsky Katharine Ferguson Connie Stewart Dennis West Ines Polonius