Stirring the Leader Within Since 1924


Phyllis Wheatley Community Center, now in its 90th year, began as the Phyllis Wheatley Settlement House and was the center of the North Minneapolis African American community prior to World War II. PWCC was central to helping African American women, and their children and their families  to relocate to Minneapolis in the 20’s. PWCC continues this legacy of service in the contemporary, vibrant North Minneapolis comunity.  

 Phyllis Wheatley Community Center is named in memory of our namesake Phillis Wheatley, the 18th century girl who was enslaved and published her first poem at 13 and American established author at 17!  Today she is known as an American Founding Mother. Phyllis Wheatley Community Center is named to honor Phillis Wheatley’s resillience, accomplishments, faith, courage, humility and ambition. Phillis Wheatley Community Center today represents the abilitity to overcome nearly insurmountable oppression and to  perservere.    The PWCC values today are:

Trust. A safe place that draws people and resources together in order to address the challenges and needs of the whole person creating hope for a better life.

Discovery. A commitment to an asset-based approach that helps individuals and families discover and build upon their strengths.

Success. A legacy of leaders and leadership that serves as a road map for those seeking to improve their future and impact their community. 

We honor our history and those who came before us who paved the way.  Phyllis Wheatley Community Center today is a safe place that draws people and resources together to advance personal leadership in building a better life



Phyllis Wheatley Community Center was selected as the first USA community based non profit organization for the Socio Economic Approach to Management.  The Socio Economic Approach to Managment (SEAM) is based on 40 years of research by Dr. Henri Savall who is the Founder and Director of the Socio Economic Institute of Firms and Organizations (ISEOR ), in Lyon, France.  SEAM interventions have been conducted in Europe, Africa, New Mexico, as well as entire city governments including the City of Lyon.   

 The University of St Thomas has created the first US Seam Institute.  SEAM is a methodology that supports enhancing social and economic performance and human development by examining hidden costs.  Hidden Costs are not identified on financial statements and are not recognized by the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) and Generally Accepted Accounting Standards (GAAS).  Hidden Costs exists and are related to structures, behaviors and dysfunctions.  The SEAM participatory process engages all levels of the organization and the Board of Directors. The result of SEAM is to add value back into the organization. 


The PWCC SEAM pilot is written about in the book – SEAM Case study of Phyllis Wheatley Community Center:  Milon, B. (2014).  Savall, H., Conbere, J. P., Heorhiadi, A., & Cristallini, A. (Eds.) (2014). Facilitating the Socio-Economic Approach to Management: Results of the First SEAM Conference in North America. Charlotte, NC: IAP – Information Age Publishing.

SEAM new release

PWCC’s Executive Director, Barbara Milon, has had the opportunity to present the Phyllis Wheatley Community Center SEAM case study at two conferences both locally and internationally as follows:


Milon, B., & Heorhiadi, A. (October, 2014). An American case study: Phyllis Wheatley Community Center. ISEOR conference, Lyon, France.

Heorhiadi, A., & Milon, B.  (November, 2012). Experience of SEAM: Case study of Phyllis Wheatley Community Center. SEAM conference at University of St. Thomas (peer reviewed conference).