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VAD Academy

Laying the foundation for a comprehensive approach to neighborhood stabilization and revitalization

VAD Academy


From neighborhood health and quality of life to property values and a local government’s ability to operate efficiently, vacant properties have far-reaching impacts on communities today. Join the 2020 Vacant, Abandoned, and Deteriorated (VAD) Properties Training Academy to get the insights and tools to help address properties in your community and prevent long-term vacancy with today’s best practices and equity-building tools.


FREE Weekly Virtual “Boot Camp” for Local Government, Nonprofit, and Community Leaders

Weekly Sessions on Tuesdays and Fridays Oct. 6 – 23


The VAD Academy – short for Vacant, Abandoned, and Deteriorated Properties Training Academy – is an intensive and rigorous training for public, private, nonprofit, and community leaders whose work and communities are impacted by challenges related to VAD properties. Thanks to support from NeighborWorks America, the 2020 edition of the VAD Academy will be offered free of charge to attendees, a $225 savings.


View the recordings for the 2020 VAD Academy >>



Vacant, abandoned, and deteriorated properties plague communities of all sizes across the United States. Whether spurred by natural disasters or industry loss, these properties create compound challenges for residents and local governments. When working to comprehensively address and transform VAD properties—with an emphasis on equitable outcomes—communities can find it difficult to know where to start.


Center for Community Progress’ VAD Academy was created to help public, private, nonprofit, and resident leaders craft equitable, effective approaches to addressing these property challenges. From breaking down complex systems to sharing smart strategies for resident engagement and fostering compliance, the VAD Academy aims to equip leaders to help return all properties to purposeful use.


What Can You  Expect

Each week, expert faculty members guide VAD Academy students through critical topics related to property revitalization. It also provides the opportunity to engage with faculty and fellow VAD Academy participants in more in-depth conversations on these revitalization topic areas:

  • Week 1 - Understanding VAD Properties and the Property Revitalization Framework: Sessions will explore the causes and impacts VAD properties have on communities and why utilizing a systemic approach can be an effective strategy for address vacancy and abandonment head on.
  • Week 2 - Tools for Property Revitalization: Sessions will focus on some of the cutting-edge tools and tactics being used in communities across the country to return VAD properties to purposeful uses and support equitable community development goals.
  • Week 3 - Broader Concepts to Inform Property Revitalization Action:
    Sessions will explore the ideas, experiences, understandings, and information needed to effectively address VAD properties in a manner which is both efficient and equitable.


Who Should Attend 

VAD Academy

The VAD Academy is designed for government, nonprofit, and private sector professionals and community partners, who aim to equitably address problem properties. If you work primarily in one issue area (such as code enforcement) and want to better understand how your day-to-day intersects with other areas of work, VAD is a great opportunity for you. Participants include urban planners, city attorneys, elected officials, CDC staff, land bank leaders, academics, code enforcement officials, neighborhood association leaders, developers, lending institutions, and more. Whether you work with urban, suburban, or rural communities, the VAD Academy curriculum will help you combat widespread abandonment and neighborhood decline.


If you have questions about the VAD Academy, please contact Justin Godard, Program Officer for National Leadership and Education, at jgodard@communityprogress.net.