Community development specialist at UMSL talks downtown St. Louis

Karl Guenther, community development specialist in the PPRC at UMSL

Karl Guenther, community development specialist in the PPRC at UMSL, discussed downtown St. Louis on “Stay Tuned,” a program on KETC (Channel 9).

Downtown St. Louis is important to people throughout the region, even if they never step foot in the area, according to Karl Guenther.

Guenther, a community development specialist in the Public Policy Research Center at the University of Missouri–St. Louis, discussed the revitalization and development of St. Louis’ downtown district on “Stay Tuned,” a program on KETC (Channel 9).

“One thing that research shows us,” he said on “Stay Tuned,” “if there’s a large inequality in economic dynamism and power in central cities vs. their suburbs, the region at large has slower growth on average than places where there is more economic equality between the central city and its suburbs.”

Guenther joined the PPRC in 2011 to facilitate and staff a network of community development organizations in the St. Louis region. He does this, in part, through his work with Todd Swanstrom, the E. Desmond Lee Endowed Professor of Community Collaboration and Public Policy Administration at UMSL, on the Creating Whole Communities initiative. Guenther is also co-founder of Invest STL, a charitable fund at the Greater Saint Louis Community Foundation, which is dedicated to the support of building great neighborhoods in the St. Louis region. 

ALIVE Magazine praised Invest STL for doing its part to make St. Louis great. And Guenther was recently named to the St. Louis Business Journal’s prestigious “30 under 30” list.

When asked by the St. Louis Business Journal what he hopes to accomplish in his career, Guenther said, “Increasing the region’s commitment to community development, improving the region’s ability to undertake larger scale community building initiatives and develop a permanent self-sustaining fund to support community improvement throughout the region.”


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