Our History

Mission & Guiding Principles

The mission of the The Newark Partnership (TNP) will build upon Newark’s distinctive assets as an inclusive and innovative university community in which businesses, community institutions, city residents, and students work together toward the common goals of enriching the city’s prosperity and improving the quality of life.

TNP will:

  1. Be a nonprofit, community-based, citywide institution*;

  2. Engage participation and active support from the city government, the university, business and community institutions, residents and students;

  3. Promote sustainable, citywide economic and cultural development that improves the overall quality of life;

  4. Maintain the vitality of downtown Newark as a central zone of community life**;

  5. Support initiatives that make Newark a preferred place for all people to live, work, enjoy, learn, do business and visit;

  6. Strengthen communication, cooperation and collaboration among community partners to effectively address the needs of our diverse and inclusive community; and,

  7. Develop a vision for the future of Newark.

*Citywide means within the geographic boundaries of the city of Newark.
**Downtown Newark includes Main Street, South Main Street, Delaware Avenue, Cleveland Avenue and adjoining areas that contribute to the commercial, cultural and aesthetic core of the city.

City of Newark residents, business people, students, and University employees meet to discuss TNP at the Newark Futures Workshop in September 2018.

City of Newark residents, business people, students, and University employees meet to discuss TNP at the Newark Futures Workshop in September 2018.



TNP was founded by recommendation of the Downtown Newark Partnership’s (DNP) Strategic Planning committee in summer 2018. While the DNP sunset at the close of 2018, TNP was born in January 2019, ready to commit to becoming a city-wide community-based organization that benefits all people who interact with Newark.

Core Working Groups

There are three core program areas in TNP that correspond to its hybrid mission: promoting citywide economic development; connecting and supporting community-based nonprofit institutions; and engaging residents in community advocacy for the ongoing improvement of the quality of life.

Economic Development

There are over 800 businesses and commercial establishments within the City of Newark’s boundaries. It is expected that the number will grow in the decades ahead, especially with the addition of new firms at or near the UD STAR campus. Across the nation, chambers of commerce or similar city-based economic development organizations typically provide representation and support for businesses of all scales and promote practices and policies that support ongoing economic growth. Newark is without a city chamber of commerce or similar citywide organization supporting overall economic development and TNP hopes to fill this gap.

TNP will support partnership programs to attract, retain and expand businesses, maintain up-to-date information on building sites and other key variables impacting business location and growth, develop and disseminate marketing materials and services on business and economic development opportunities. TNP will provide comprehensive information on business services and links to member institutions and city services. TNP will be a partner with the Delaware State and New Castle County chambers of commerce and will also work closely with the City of Newark’s planning department. The programs of TNP will include support for downtown Newark economic prosperity within the context of a broader definition of the downtown area and its interdependence with the overall economic development of the city.

Nonprofit Community Support

Newark has a diverse nonprofit sector that not only includes large institutions such as the University of Delaware and Christiana Care Health Systems, but community benefit institutions that provide key services to those who live, work and study in the city. These organizations include churches, social service institutions, such as the Newark Senior Center, advocacy and representation institutions, such as the Newark chapter of the NAACP, and art, cultural and entertainment institutions, such as the Newark Arts Alliance. There is no local organization that connects and supports these institutions and TNP will fill this gap.

TNP will create an information sharing network for Newark nonprofit institutions that can help in the coordination of services and events, and offer a portal through which those who live, work and study in our city can easily locate institutions that provide services that they need. TNP will also coordinate with organizations such as the Delaware Alliance for Nonprofit Advancement and the University of Delaware’s Center for Community Research and Service to make available professional development programs and supports for Newark nonprofits. TNP can also help to strengthen the shared capacity of the Newark nonprofit community in areas of priority for improving the quality of life.

Civic Engagement

TNP will serve as a catalyst for ongoing community conversations and initiatives to improve Newark’s quality of life and enhance the city’s future. A pilot community-based workshop program entitled, Newark Futures Workshop, debuted on June 13, 2018, and attracted over one hundred participants. Participants identified community priorities (such as the quality of public education) that should be addressed by TNP in partnership with the City of Newark and community partners. TNP’s website will provide opportunities for all members of the community to engage in continuing dialogue on community issues and provide resources that enrich understanding of those issues and of the options for addressing them.

Working with the Newark City Government, the University of Delaware and other partners, TNP will support community partnerships in such areas as arts and culture, education, environmental sustainability, energy efficiency, multi-modal transportation and diversity and inclusion. Some of these partnerships are already being created and others will be facilitated in the coming months. TNP will also encourage and support those who live, work and study in Newark to participate in community engagement by providing information about community events and programs and opportunities to contribute to community partnership.