The Czech Village New Bohemia Main Street District organization has been operating in
Cedar Rapids for a decade this month. And, its Board of Directors will soon be holding
some fun events to celebrate all that has been accomplished. The Board also sees this
milestone as a time to redouble efforts to ensure that its neighborhoods — some of the
community and region’s most vibrant — retain their charm as they continue to develop
into even better places to live, work and play.
To achieve this vision, the Board has created a new position to drive and facilitate the
strategic vision and development of the area. They have hired Monica Vernon as the
Czech Village NewBo Main Street Executive Director of Strategic Development.
Vernon built a career in marketing, communications and market research founding and
building Vernon Research Group over two decades and teaching Entrepreneurial
Marketing at the University of Iowa for eight years. Having served eight years on the
Cedar Rapids City Council and ten on the Cedar Rapids City Planning and Zoning
Commission, she has a comprehensive understanding of land use, place making,
community and neighborhood building as well as experience working with local, state
and national government entities to spotlight the needs of our community. She also has
experience with economic development as a longtime member and past chair of the
Cedar Rapids Area Chamber of Commerce.
This new position will be tasked with developing a comprehensive strategic vision and
goals for the Main Street District. This process will engage all organizations, entities,
businesses, stakeholders as well as the City, County, and State. This process will
support future initiatives and help achieve the property, business, community, and
economic development best suited for the unique district of Czech Village – New
Bohemia Main Street. Additionally, Vernon will be the liaison to local governments,
businesses and other organizations and individuals outside the District who are
interested in participating in some way with the District.
“I plan to work with our board, staff, volunteers and organizations and individuals
throughout the region to keep the District growing and vibrant while preserving the
character and enjoyment of these special places for years to come,” said Vernon.
Vernon joins Abby Huff who was recently hired as Executive Director Main Street and
who operates the comprehensive in-District Main Street program.