May 8 helps our clients drive policy change to advance thriving equitable communities through evidence-based research analysis, effective implementation, better collaboration and advocacy. May 8 has two decades of experience guiding nonprofit, foundation and government leaders to create impact that is powerful, equitable and inclusive. 

Recent News


This City Case explores the first four years of the Kensington Corridor Trust (KCT). KCT is a neighborhood trust started in 2019 whose mission is to acquire and redevelop real estate on a disinvested commercial corridor and place it into long-term community control to preserve culture and affordability while building neighborhood power and wealth. KCT has an innovative trust governance structure that seeks to decommodify commercial and residential assets by taking them out of the speculative market and placing them under community control. Read a commentary by Karen Black on the KCT model here.

Tennessee Preemption Law Reversed

May 8 has had the extraordinary opportunity to work with the City of Chattanooga’s Chief Housing Officer Nicole Heyman since 2022 to create the city’s first comprehensive policy, program and funding framework to address its affordable housing challenges.  Chattanooga is making extraordinary progress understanding and responding to its sizable housing deficit.  Yet Tennessee state law often stands in the way by preempting interventions that other communities are using to bolster their housing supply and make the numbers for construction of lower cost homes work.  The bill began with a statewide convening led by Nicole Heyman, Chief Housing Officer of Chattanooga where cities across the state discussed what key tools they need to increase the supply of attainable housing.  Karen Black of May 8 had the good fortune to facilitate this two day working session with Tennessee leaders where they agreed upon their top priority in August 2023, they collaboratively sought to reverse a 2021 state law that preempted cities from any “incentive that makes construction of affordable housing more economical”. In May 2023, the state reversed its law giving cities like Chattanooga the option of offering zoning incentives to promote affordable housing development.

More News