What makes Upper Albany is the teamwork that happens here. We now have volunteers come to our site from across the region. We work hard, we get to know our taxpayers and we are committed to providing people with a quality and professional experience.
– Naomi McKoy, Upper Albany Neighborhood Collaborative
We tend to think of trailblazers as people who walk ahead, finding new paths and solutions, leaving the trail better for those who come after them. Naomi McKoy, Dorothy (Dot) Biggs and the late Patricia (Pat) Williams are the trailblazers for their neighborhood, their city and the region through the Upper Albany Neighborhood Collaborative.
Every tax season since 2002, the three would work together to provide free income tax assistance to residents through United Way’s Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) campaign.
“What makes Upper Albany is the teamwork that happens here,” said McKoy. “We now have volunteers come to our site from across the region. We work hard, we get to know our taxpayers and we are committed to providing people with a quality and professional experience. The tax site is often at the center of the Collaborative’s work.”
When the pandemic began, the team at Upper Albany Neighborhood Collaborative did not hesitate. They began delivering services virtually and served as one of the primary drop off-sites for tax filers. And while 2020 was different and challenging, the team is as committed as ever. Upper Albany Neighborhood Collaborative harnesses the power of community. It is a place that began as a way to give residents voice and to empower neighbors to help one another.
That is a testament to the leadership of Naomi, Dot and Pat – three people who were friends for decades and brought their unique talents and skills together in a way that addresses the needs of today while blazing a better trail and building a more equitable future for the next generation.