DeAmon Harges is the original “Roving Listener” as a neighbor and staff member of the Broadway United Methodist Church in Indianapolis. His role is to listen and discover the gifts, passions and dreams of citizens in his community, and to find ways to utilize them in order to build community, economy and mutual “delight.” The bulk of DeAmon’s work is based on the principles and practices of the Asset-Based Community Development Institute (ABCD) that brings neighbors and institutions together to discover the power of being a good neighbor. DeAmon builds on what is already present and in place in the neighborhood, using those formally undiscovered assets to connect and empower rather than working only from the community’s needs and deficits. There is now a corps of “Roving Listeners” working in the Broadway Methodist Church neighborhood.
DeAmon is also a co-founder of Tesserae Learning Community (tesseraelearningcommunity.com). Tesserae Learning LLC was conceived in the fall of 2011 as a way to began conversations about how to bring the ideas of Asset-Based Community Development (ABCD), Theory U and other contemporary practices to the forefront of community and organizational life.
As an artist, DeAmon uses his art for social change and community building. DeAmon’s characterizes his work in general as the practice of “deep listening” and “positive deviance” from the typical models of neighborhood organizing.
POSITIONS AND EMPLOYMENT
1999 –2001 Community organizer, Broadway Christian Parish, South Bend, Indiana
2001-2003 First grade teacher, Art teacher for Alain Locke Charter Academy, Chicago, IL (African-American male charter school)
2006-2008 Arts Coordinator for Garfield Park, Indianapolis, IN
2004-present “Roving Listener,” Broadway United Methodist Church, Indianapolis, IN
2009-present ABCD Consultant, Partners for Sacred Places, Philadelphia, PA
2010-present Faculty for Georgia Institute for Developmental Disabilities
2010-present Community Engagement Teacher, KI Community Schools
OTHER EXPERIENCE AND PROFESSIONAL MEMBERSHIPS
2009-current Fellow in the Asset-Based Community Development Institute at Northwestern University, Evanston, IL
2012 Kettering Foundation, Social Innovator, one of eight most influential neighborhood organizers on the ground
2010-present Faculty of the Georgia Winter Institute on Community.
2009 Mid North Church Council Drum Major for Justice, Martin Luther King, Jr. Award