Longfellow Community Council

Meet Longfellow Community Council’s new executive director Joel McReynolds

Joel McReynolds joined the Longfellow Community Council after a decade of experience in nonprofit programming, including youth mentoring, community gardens, refugee outreach, fundraising, and neighborhood development. Through all these programs, he’s witnessed firsthand how neighbors can come together to create positive, sustainable social change.
Before coming to LCC, Joel worked at Banyan Community, a community development nonprofit based in the Phillips neighborhood of Minneapolis. While at Banyan, Joel supervised the family and community programs, including a block club program, a monthly community breakfast, and violence prevention initiatives. 
Joel studied public administration and ethnic and racial studies at the University of Wisconsin - La Crosse and received his master’s in applied community and eonomic development from Illinois State University. He enjoys being involved in the Greater Longfellow community and fills his free time playing ukulele, riding the bike paths, exploring the outdoors, and following British soccer.
Where do you live and what are some of your hobbies?
I currently live in the Phillips neighborhood with my partner and two cats. I enjoy Minneapolis’ excellent parks system and frequent the parks and lakes to play tennis, relax, swim, and kayak. I love exploring new-to-me restaurants and the performing arts scene, so I appreciate living in a city with access to so many diverse and exciting opportunities. I also love to read and learn from new perspectives, and one of my hobbies is reviewing books from publishers before they are released.
What’s your favorite thing to do in Longfellow?
Choosing only one favorite thing to do in Longfellow is hard, but my most frequented neighborhood activity is biking. I live near the Greenway right now, so I use it to commute to the LCC office and get to the beautiful river bike paths. I love being able to bike around Greater Longfellow easily.
What drew you to Longfellow and this position?
The Greater Longfellow community is a large, diverse, energetic part of the city that really excites me. It has a great blend of family-focused neighborhoods and innovative businesses. When researching the position, I noticed the incredibly high rate of longevity for Longfellow residents – according to the data, most people who live in Longfellow want to stay and don’t move out of the neighborhood. And for good reason! I’m privileged to be able to join the LCC, which has a long and successful history of serving the community by engaging, involving, and empowering residents to improve the well-being of all in the area. I look forward to getting to know the neighborhood better and collaborating with the community to make great things happen.
Contact him at joel@longfellow.org


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