Spotlight on Women for Black Male Achievement: Page Bailey
Interview by Jonathan Philipp, Research and Policy Assistant, NTJN
To celebrate Women’s History Month this March, the Institute for Black Male Achievement has been sharing women’s perspectives – mothers, sisters, daughters, grandmothers, and leaders – on black male achievement. Since we love that idea, at the National Transitional Jobs Network (NTJN) we want to highlight another one of the inspiring #Women4BMA this month, Page Bailey. Page is a member of our B.MORE Initiative’s Community of Practice doing amazing work in the field of black male achievement as the director of the Practitioners Leadership Institute (PLI) at the Center For Urban Families (CFUF). Located in Baltimore, Maryland, CFUF’s core mission is to strengthen urban communities by helping fathers and families achieve stability and economic success. Read on to learn more about Page, her work, and what motivates her commitment to black male achievement.
Q: As a woman, why have you chosen to work on black male achievement?
A: As a white woman growing up in a middle class family I was not exposed at an early age to many of the barriers that black men face. When I began working at CFUF six years ago, it gave me a whole new lens on life. The general public is uneducated and naïve on the barriers that African American men face in today’s society and it is frustrating to witness. I want to be able to change the general public perception and expose them to the truth. There is no such thing as a dead-beat dad, there are fathers who are unable to obtain employment, broke, and stuck in a system that is not properly serving their needs. I live near the community that we serve at CFUF and it is heartbreaking to see the children in the community feel like everyone is against them. I just wish the rest of society could understand and hear the stories of these men and then maybe it would help them connect the dots on the importance of black male achievement programs.
Q: What are you doing to advance black male achievement?
A: As director of the Practitioners Leadership Institute (PLI) at the Center For Urban Families I have helped connect people on the national level.
It doesn’t matter if you are in Chicago, Baltimore, or Los Angeles, the core problems are still the same. Fatherhood, employment, and housing programs are all needed and organizations need to work together to make sure individuals are receiving all the services possibly available to them.
A part of my job is connecting practitioners to each other and the information they need to operate their programs in a way that most benefits their participants. My job is also about connecting what is happening in organizations to policy makers. No matter what a person’s job is they have an ability to participate in black male achievement in the same way and make a difference.
Page Bailey oversees all program operations, staff supervision, program development, event planning, and evaluation at PLI. She also manages partnerships and vendor and business development as well as program reporting, budget development, management, and compliance. She joined Center For Urban Families (CFUF) six years ago and previously served as the organization’s Grants & Contracts Manager, where she oversaw grant management activities for all programs, including program development, fiscal monitoring, quality assurance, reporting, evaluation and an $8.5 million Capital Campaign. Concurrent to serving as CFUF’s Grants & Contract’s Manager, she was also the Project Manager for a 3-year Training & Technical Assistance Cooperative Grant (CSBG) through the US Department of Health and Human Services. As a result of this initiative, the well-known Exploring Healthy Relationships and Marriage with Fragile Families (ERM) curriculum was updated and expanded into The Blueprint: A guide to family stability and economic success. Bailey is a graduate of Towson University, receiving a BA in English, and is currently pursuing her Masters in City and Regional Planning at Morgan State University. Extremely active in her community association, she resides in Baltimore City with her husband and son.