Marion Lamberth: NECD Leadership Council member

By Chavaria Williams
NCCU Staff Writer
the Durham VOICE

Part of the NECD Leadership Council’s mission is “to be a catalyst for the development of economic and human capital in our historic community.” Marion Lamberth is one of the council members out on the streets trying to turn the mission into a reality.

Marion Lamberth can often be found at the Golden Belt Complex where she works on making NECD a better place. (Staff photo by Chavaria Williams)

Lamberth, a single-parent, NECD homeowner became a council member after serving as a PAC 5 (Partners against Crime) co-facilitator for three and a half years and as a member of the NECD Action Team. The Action Team, a precursor to the Leadership Council was charged with developing the original revitalization plan for NECD.

“I have made a commitment to pursue environmental awareness, educational and economic justice in Northeast Central Durham,” says Lamberth.

City leaders praise Lamberth for her commitment. “Marion has been a member of the NECD council since its establishment about four years ago,” said Earl Phillips, assistant director for community engagement, Department of  Neighborhood Improvement Services.

The council meets once a month for two-hour meetings, and subcommittees meet for an hour and a half.

Council members meet with residents as part of their committee work. The council has twenty members who must own a business or reside in NECD to be considered for membership.

After council meetings, Lamberth shares information with neighbors. Lamberth appreciates the diversified group of people on the leadership council because she feels it better serves the residents of various backgrounds.

The council aids needy families when it can, but mainly deals with economic development and requesting money from the Durham City Council to promote the community’s economic initiatives.

“We go to the Police Department and request more police surveillance [in poorly protected areas of the city],” she says. “We realize it is imperative that the northeast central section of Durham becomes more attractive.”

Lamberth feels that council could be considered the voice of the community.

The council members believe that a whole is a sum of its parts and NECD reflects  greatly on other parts of the city.

“We try and are open to collaboration and cooperation with other Durham councils,” says Lamberth. “We make special efforts to reach out to El Centro, other PAC leaders and the Congregations Association and Neighborhoods (CAN).”

“The future is promising because it is an untapped resource that hasn’t been fully utilized,” she said. “The future is bright and I see a wonderful prosperity for it.”

The council hopes to restore the community back to the Durham it once was decades ago.