Mission Statement: Visitacion Valley Connections is the catalyst to build connections between businesses, residents and service-providers that brings resources to support positive growth for the entire Visitacion Valley Community.

In the spring of 2004, Urban Solutions and the Bay Area Local Initiatives Support (LISC) Corporation, in collaboration with Asian Neighborhood Design, initiated an economic revitalization program for the Leland Avenue Commercial District in San Francisco’s Visitacion Valley neighborhood. Working with a local steering committee comprised of representatives from three neighborhood-based organizations, this technical assistance team facilitated a series of four community workshops intending to establish an identity and vision for the commercial district. The workshops culminated in the drafting of an action plan that lays out specific improvements and strategies necessary for the realization of the community’s vision. An annual community celebration expressly sited on Leland Ave was a major part of this initial planning effort.
Visitacion Valley Connections (originally named Visitacion Valley Business Opportunities and Outreach to Merchants -VVBOOM), was born out of this effort. This community designed and led initiative had the goal of stimulating community revitalization along the Leland Avenue /Bayshore Boulevard commercial corridor. Overseen by a steering committee of residents and community supporters the initiative was initially funded by the Mayor’s Office and LISC. Funding allowed the initiative to hire a full time program manager tasked with the responsible of implementing the community vetted work plan. Daily program manager supervision was done by staff of the Visitacion Valley Community Development Corporation.
Within the first year of VVBOOM’s launch, the initiative planned and produced the first Leland Avenue Street Fair. The event was conceived as a community celebration that would start a process of reconnecting residents back to Leland Avenue and its merchant community.During these early years, VVBOOM spearheaded several storefront façade improvement projects through the SFShines Program; initiated a community mural project with grant awarded funds; secured corporate and nonprofit sector grants (Wells Fargo and Rebuilding Together) to help merchants complete interior renovations, and organized several community cleanup days and holiday decorating events;
VVBOOM changed its name to the Visitacion Valley Business Improvement Group (VVBIG) when the host Community Based Organization, Visitacion Valley Community Development Corporation dissolved. VVBIG became a fiscally sponsored project of Community Initiatives (CI). Under CI, VVBIG continued to secure City grants and private sector sponsorships and continued to produce street fairs as well as remaining at the forefront of merchant support, commercial corridor advocacy, and long range planning in relationship to the economic development of Leland Avenue.
In 2012, VVBIG was restructured and the full time program manager position was eliminated. The Steering Committee however continued to see the need for an entirely community lead initiative and transitioned VVBIG into Visitacion Valley Connections.
Visitacion Valley Connections continues to build connections between businesses, residents, and service-providers.

Visitacion Valley Connections Steering Committee Members:

Russel Morine: Co-Founder of Visitacion Valley Connections.

Edie Epps: Visitation Valley native and co funder of the Visitacion Valley History Project.

Molly Hassler: Community Advocate

Rebecca Miller: Former Workforce Director, Local SEIU UHW

Neo Veavea: Samoan community leader and LGBTQ community advocate.

Anne Seaman: Co-Founder of the Visitacion Valley Greenway Project.

Dana Harrison: Retired Events Coordinator.

Toni Zernick: Professional Photographer, Independent business owner.

Rothanak Prak-Austin: Landscape Design Student, Cal Poly San Luis Obisp