Ironically, “seeing the light” of community involvement for Libbie Wills had its genesis when the beacon on the T-jetty near her house disappeared.
“When the light went missing, I called City Hall to see about replacing it. That’s when I found out about the civic association. I guess you could say that was the start of my involvement in the community. Funny, but they never did fix that light.”
That didn’t stop the transplanted Texan from pushing forward. After graduating from Elms College in New England, Libbie pursued a career in social work in New York City. Now, as president of the First Ward Civic Association, the 25-year Atlantic City resident has increased her participation in civic affairs.
“The main reason for my involvement deals with quality of life issues for the residents of our ward, along with keeping them informed of what’s going on in the city that impacts them. One of the things I’m most proud of is the new housing in our area that was built through CRDA’s involvement.”
While appreciative of the work done in the Inlet, Libbie has weathered her share of broken promises. When the economic downturn hit the real estate market, Inlet projects like Melrose Place, the Marbella Project, and Kusher Point never made it off the drawing boards. But her dreams persist.
“I’d still like to see CRDA come up with some plans for the vacant lots in our neighborhood. Developing the South Inlet into a mixed use neighborhood would be ideal.”
That vision makes it evident that the light in Libbie Wills is shining forward.
-John “Yonk” Rosnick