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About the Team

Heartland Alliance

Heartland Alliance, one of the world’s leading anti-poverty organizations, works in communities in the U.S. and abroad to serve the most vulnerable populations .Heartland Alliance works to advance human rights and champion human dignity by providing services and promoting solutions to achieve a more just global society. Heartland Alliance believes that society benefits when all people can participate, prosper, and reach their full potential and will not give up until everyone is able to exit poverty, heal from trauma, and achieve stability.

Heartland Alliance is comprised of five entities: Heartland Alliance, Heartland Alliance Health, Heartland Alliance International, Heartland Housing, and Heartland Human Care Services. With one shared mission, Heartland Alliance provides a continuum of programs that address the root causes of poverty, generate social change, and inspire people to build better lives not only for themselves but for their communities.

Heartland Alliance’s approach is multi-faceted and intentional, and intersects through three focus areas: health and healing, safety and justice, and economic opportunity.

Lake Forest College Team

Sarah Coffman

Sarah Coffman ('21) will be a PhD student at Rutgers University come fall of 2021. Her research concerns violence in the postwar period perpetuated by whites against black homeowners and renters who moved outside of Chicago's densely populated Black Belt and into traditionally white neighborhoods. While at Lake Forest College, she was involved with Inter-Text, the student-run humanities and social sciences journal, and several different research projects and fellowships, including the Graduate School Exploration fellowship, an article project with Dr. Rudi Batzell on late-nineteenth and early twentieth century infanticide in Chicago, and the Richter Scholar program. She was awarded the Richard W. Hantke Award in history, Phi Beta Kappa, and Dean's List. 

Zana Gradan 

Zana Gradan is a student at Lake Forest College majoring in Communication with minors in Digital Media Design and Entrepreneurship & Innovation. She was very excited to work on this project to learn more about not only designing a webpage, but also to bring oral histories to life and showcase them in a fun way.

Isaac Winter 

Isaac Winter graduated from Lake Forest College in 2020 with a major in English Literature and a minor in History. Currently, he works as an AmeriCorps VISTA employee at Above and Beyond Family Recovery Center in Chicago. There, he is helping set up a food pantry in West Garfield Park. He is applying to social work graduate schools for this fall. 

Courtney Pierre Joseph 

Courtney Pierre Joseph is an Assistant Professor of History and African American Studies at Lake Forest College. Her specializations are in African American history and culture, Haiti and its diaspora, women and gender studies, and hip hop culture. Joseph earned her PhD in History from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2017. She has spoken at numerous institutions, including the DuSable Museum of African American History, and at various events, including the fall 2020 Chicago Humanities Festival. She is also working with the Haitian Museum of Chicago to create the first oral history archive dedicated to the Haitian diaspora in Chicago. Dr. Joseph is currently working on her first book, tentatively titled DuSable’s Diaspora: Haiti, Blackness, and Belonging in Chicago.