Communities Who Know, Inc.™ (CWK), established on October 12, 2017, as a non-profit organization, is focused on generating collaborative solutions for sustainable communities.  

The idea of CWK emerged from the Westside Communities Alliance (WCA), a collaborative campus-community engagement initiative at the Ivan Allen College of Liberal Arts at Georgia Institute of Technology that was organized and coordinated by Jacqueline Jones Royster.



The core mission of CWK is educational.  We work hand in hand with other community stakeholders to incubate socially responsible, ethically responsible, culturally well-informed, mutually defined, sustainable strategies for community development and progress.  Both CWK and WCA drew inspiration in pursuing this mission from Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s 1963 “Letters from a Birmingham Jail."

We are dedicated to connecting knowledge and action deliberately and with a careful and caring eye toward doing what we can to make a better world.

"We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny.  Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly."

- Martin Luther King, "Letters from a Birmingham Jail," 1963.


The primary goal of our work is to help stakeholders persistently interrogate in various contexts another statement by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., regarding the quest for genuine equality and social justice.  As excerpted from a 1967 speech, “The Other America,” Dr. King stated:

It’s much easier to integrate a lunch counter than it is to guarantee a livable income and a good solid job. It’s much easier to guarantee the right to vote than it is to guarantee the right to live in sanitary, decent housing conditions. It is much easier to integrate a public park than it is to make genuine, quality, integrated education a reality. And so today we are struggling for something which says we demand GENUINE EQUALITY.

Using evidence-based strategies, whether quantitative or qualitative, we seek to be a value-added in forwarding truth, justice, and equality—for all.

Principles of Action

CWK follows the operational model established by WCA for collective community action in support of mutually beneficial urban development and sustainability.  Our Principles of Action include:

  • Respect (for ourselves and for others).
  • Process (the recognition that time-on-task and time-on-relationships matter, with specific attention to caringempathy, and compassion).
  • Communication (with a commitment at our core to listen, respond, and be transparent)
  • Accessibility (for community members with varying technological experience and expertise).
  • Reciprocity (with a presumption that we are all worthy stakeholders and have something to offer)
  • Mutuality (with the presumption that we are operating in common cause and should each expect to benefit).

Operational Priorities

The operational priorities of CWK, Inc. include:

Leveraging digital technologies to create an easily accessible, data-driven approach in knowledge building and strategic planning in local communities. See the CWK Data Dashboard.

Strengthening frameworks for enhancing civic education and for building a diverse leadership development pipeline. See the CWK Next Generation/Atlanta Initiative.

Facilitating the documentation and preservation of local history and culture – as illustrated by the Building Memories Podcast Series and the Community Assets Portal.

Together, we can do better. Together, we thrive.