At our best, we can take even the germ of an idea and amplify it into its most impactful final form – from communications campaigns and museum exhibitions, to public engagement programs and internal diversity audits.
We are especially adept at taking complex subjects and making them accessible to a broad public – and we excel at opportunities in areas and industries such as Education, Cultural Arts, Healthcare, Science, History, and Tourism & Hospitality.
Below are just a few projects helmed by The ROZ Group, some through our ROZ DeZign team, which develops public works and art experiences and advocates for the acknowledgement and commemoration of people and moments that made American history.
President’s House: Freedom and Slavery in Making a New Nation– Philadelphia, PA
The President’s House came about as a result of an essay penned by Ed Lawler that captured the attention of a broad audience of people, in particular, Philadelphia’s African American community. It was revealed that during his term of office, George Washington had illegally kept nine enslaved people at the site, rotating them back and forth to Mount Vernon, Virginia.
People were outraged that the nation’s most historic mile in the country, home to Independence Hall and other iconic institutions, did not tell the impactful and emotional story of enslavement during George Washington’s term of office in the first executive mansion. Due to public protest, the City of Philadelphia, supported by the federal government decided to fund a memorial dedicated to this important American story.
In 2007, as part of a “due diligence” to prepare the ground for construction, an archeological dig was conducted adjacent to the Liberty Bell Pavilion. Surprisingly enough, the structural remains of the executive mansion, home to the nation’s first two presidents. These important findings attracted the attention of researchers, city officials, activists and historians. The site of the dig also attracted more than 300,000 visitors in a three-month period. Slavery was no longer an abstract concept but made real by the findings and the ensuring research that soon took pace.
The ROZ Group, acting as the Owner’s Representative for the City of Philadelphia, managed this project from conception through its completion in 2011, participating in key matters such as content development, exhibition development, public engagement, public relations and curriculum development.
A joint project of the City of Philadelphiaand National Park Service,the President’s House calls attention to the complex juxtaposition of slavery and freedom in the making of this country. Situated in Independence National Historical Park, the site commemorates not only the journeys of Washington and Adams as they shaped the executive branch of government, but also the perspectives of the enslaved people who for centuries had been nameless and voiceless.
#history #education #science #tourism #therozgroup
Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance – Philadelphia, PA
Many of our projects kick off with a comprehensive diversity and inclusion assessment for our clients, followed by in-depth, collaborative meetings with all stakeholders to examine the central question, “how can we do better?”
In the Spring of 2018, the Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance (GPCA) brought The ROZ Group on board to perform an implicit bias scan of their operations – a comprehensive look at how well GPCA reflects the diversity and demographics of region, especially related to the arts.
We used a comprehensive and detailed approach, conducting interviews, surveys, “think tanks” and roundtable discussions with GPCA staff, members (current and former), supporters and more. We also included feedback from local diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) experts.
The full report was made available to the public and concluded that GPCA has considerable room to develop and reinforce its commitment DEI. GPCA was prepared to address the honest feedback and is currently engaged in the long-term work toward creating a more culturally diverse arts and culture scene in Philadelphia. Their work has been a model for other organizations around the country. Our work with GPCA has served as the springboard for similar work The ROZ Group has performed for the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission, the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society, the Natural Lands Trust, and York County Economic Alliance.
Given today’s political and social climate, it is both gratifying and reassuring to see companies, brands and institutions realizing the importance of addressing long-standing issues around diversity, equity, inclusion, and access. It’s about far more than race and ethnicity; the real work of diversity requires an honest examination of how an organization approaches all aspects of access and equity. We are proud to be a part of “change.”
#education #cultural arts #diversity
The Nature Conservancy – Wilmington, DE
In 2018 The ROZ Group was retained by The Nature Conservancy(TNC) to build a traveling exhibit tool about water stewardship. TNC is a charitable environmental organization with a mission to "conserve the lands and waters on which all life depends.”
The primary questions from TNC as the project started was, “How can we get people in communities to be more interested in water conservation and testing?” When we engage citizens and find out how conservation impacts their lives, we often find that there are two sides to the desire for better stewardship. From the standpoint of environmental justice, we know many of our communities continue to suffer from a history of dumping of toxic wastes and other harmful substances. This means that survival and improved quality of life are “front and center,” and those needs must be heard by those who can remedy the situation.
Truthfully, it is not that people are complacent about participating in stewardship, instead they are fighting for a more serious side of things that directly impacts the land on which we they live. When citizens and organizations listen to one another, the bonds for a more powerful legacy can be formed and those bonds strengthen the overall effort to take better care of our natural resources.
We celebrate TNC for hosting a dialogue to hear from residents about issues related to water quality and we celebrate the local residents who came out and shared their perspectives. The exhibit tool that we have built now takes into account the voices of the people in partnership with the goals of TNC.
#science #education #conservation #environmentaljustice #water
Bebashi – Transition to Hope – Philadelphia, PA
Bebashi – Transition to Hopeopened its doors in 1986, launching as a full-service HIV/AIDS service organization with a special interest in serving low-income people of color, specifically the African American community.
At the time of its inception, there were no HIV/AIDS educational programs or services targeting African Americans or people of color, making Bebashi the first African American agency in the United States to provide services to low income minority groups affected by the disease.
Today, Bebashi remains committed to helping primarily poor, low income clients overcome the health disparities that disproportionately impact them. We are on board to explore ways to build organizational capacity, increase philanthropic support and raise the public profile of both the organization and its leadership. Working with Bebashi has made us far more knowledgeable about the impact of the diseases and the continuing fight to eradicate HIV/AIDS and HepC.
#healthcare #philanthropy #funddevelopment #healthcare disparities
Cheyney University of Pennsylvania – Cheyney, PA
Cheyney University, theoldest historically Black university in the United States, has a rich and storied history and a roster of impressive alumni that includes journalism titan Ed Bradley; civil rights activist Bayard Rustin; Robert W. Bogle, publisher and CEO of the Philadelphia Tribune, the oldest newspaper continuously owned and operated by an African American; Julian Abele, architect of the Philadelphia Free Library and the Philadelphia Museum of Art; and Rebecca J. Cole, one of the first black female physicians in the U.S.
After facing several years of falling enrollment and financial instability, Cheyney University has triumphantly turned a corner, recently announcing a full institutional redesign and the launch of two new institutes.
The Crenshaw Institute for Applied Science and Technology will prioritize STEM fields (science, technology, engineering and math) to look at food, energy and water security – topics of vital importance not only in Pennsylvania but also across the nation. The Institute for the Contemporary African American Experience will leverage Cheyney’s legacy as the oldest HBCU and focus on issues of diversity, access, race, and ethnicity.
The ROZ Group was retained in 2018 to help Cheyney strengthen its visibility and market share and will support university-wide efforts around fund development, marketing and communications, and key relationship-building.
#education #history #diversity #resurgence #Cheyneymade
The Please Touch Museum – Philadelphia, PA
On February 2, 2019, Philadelphia’s renowned Please Touch Museum welcomed the widely-lauded exhibition America to Zanzibar: Muslim Cultures Near and Farfor a seven-month run. It was the museum’s first project under a new initiative to address contemporary social issues and represent Philadelphia’s culturally diverse populations.
As part of the decision to bring America to Zanzibarto Philadelphia, The ROZ Group provided outreach support to the museum’s senior team and worked with an advisory committee of the regions’ influential Muslims to inform the exhibition and to ensure that Please Touch Museum’s approach was sensitive and true to Muslim cultural traditions and requirements. The ROZ Group was charged with driving efforts around awareness among relevant stakeholders and publics for the exhibition; coalition-building for museum leadership; and supporting public relations through crisis communication and marketing communication.
It is our hope that America to Zanzibarwill provide a useful snapshot of how children and families experience sensations of belonging or exclusion in children’s museum settings around the nation.
#cultural arts #education #tourism #diversity #inclusion