Convened Sustainable Home Ownership (SHO) Coalition, comprised of 13 non-profit housing agencies working together in Maricopa County, Arizona to address the impact of foreclosures in neighborhoods. Since June 2008, over 600 vacant properties have been put back into use as affordable homeownership opportunities. “Making Sustainable Communities Happen” is a civic engagement/community education project to introduce smart growth principles to the Valley of the Sun (greater Phoenix metro area). With a group of volunteer speakers, over 1,000 residents have participated in presentations to discuss the impact of and alternatives to growth in our region. Together with AARP and Sonoran Institute, Livable Communities Coalition (LISC) Phoenix has brought together a multi-disciplinary coalition of coalitions to promote sustainable communities in Arizona through education and advocacy regarding transportation, housing and land use issues. The Fellowship experience strengthened my interest and knowledge about Smart Growth and provided ideas on how to approach this issue in the metro Phoenix region. It also gave me the confidence to make the leap from a grassroots approach to community development to a regional perspective with an emphasis on effecting change through policy.