top of page

Ep. 99 How to Combat Apathy in Small Towns

Jeff Siegler knows small towns. He loves them. And he wants the people who live in them to love them, too. This episode is all about apathy in small towns--what it looks like, how it starts, how it gets worse--and how we fix it.

About Jeff:

Jeff Siegler is a writer, speaker and consultant concerned with the powerful role place plays in our lives. He is the founder of the civic pride consulting firm, Revitalize, or Die. and a co-founding partner of Proud Places. Having grown up in a struggling rustbelt city Jeff understands the devastating cost of civic apathy and works every day to combat its effects. After obtaining his Masters in Urban Planning from Virginia Commonwealth University, Jeff went to work on Main Street. First as a downtown manager and BID director, and later as the Ohio Main Street State Coordinator. As a consultant, Jeff's work takes him around the country to assist cities in their efforts to restore civic health. He believes we have to move beyond economic development and tourism and instead focus on making our cities into places residents can be proud to call home. He is currently in the process of writing his first book, titled Your City is Sick. Jeff, his wife Amber, and their four children call Pittsburgh home.

In this episode, we cover:

  • Why you can’t out-plan or out-fund apathy

  • Civic pride as self-esteem

  • How do we get people to care? (Spoiler: socializing is kind of a great place to start.)

  • Why place matters

  • Why specific asks are almost always better than just asking someone to join a committee

Links + Resources Mentioned:

Revitalize or Die website:

Revitalize or Die Facebook:

Subscribe and Review The Growing Small Towns Show!

Thanks for tuning into this week’s episode of The Growing Small Towns Show! If the information in our conversations and interviews has helped you in your small town, please click on the images below for Apple Podcasts, Stitcher or Spotify, subscribe to the show, and leave us an honest review. Your reviews and feedback will not only help us continue to deliver relevant, helpful content, but it will also help us reach even more small-town trailblazers just like you!

bottom of page