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River Roots Redevelopment: Introducing, Rachel Brosnahan

My name is Rachel Brosnahan. (No, not that one!) I graduated from Pittsburgh Technical College with a degree in graphic design. I am currently a freelance designer working with businesses and nonprofits both locally and nationally. My husband and I, along with our two children, enjoy all the outdoor opportunities this area has to offer. I have spent much of my time here exploring and learning about the region that I was transplanted into. 

I have a passion for the local community. I have served on the board of our local public art studio since its opening in 2015 and volunteer my time whenever I can for things like the Emlenton Summer Festival, River Roots Community Farm, and my local church.

I moved to the area almost fifteen years ago, and I have called Emlenton my home for the last twelve years. I’m not new, no longer an “outsider,” but I’m not native to the region. I am somewhere in between.

This gives me a slightly different perspective, especially on change. I don’t have the same memories attached to places and things as my husband, who has lived here his whole life. My memories are still being made. The vast majority of my children’s memories are still to come. And when I hear about the potential redevelopment of properties, I can easily get excited because I know these places as empty shells though they were once bustling businesses. However, I can also understand the hesitation surrounding these changes, and any changes that displace the familiar security in what we know.

I hope to, through these articles, share a little of my excitement over the potential that redevelopment offers to the places that have seen businesses come and go. I hope you are inspired to learn more about the new things coming to our region and how the organizations leading redevelopment are working to preserve as much as possible while also allowing room for innovation.

In the end, I think we all want to build and strengthen our community to be a wonderful, resilient, and economically stable place for our families and future generations.

I would love to hear from you, too! If you would like to learn more about what is going on in the region or if you have some ideas about changes you would like to see, please join me and other community members for a coffee chat at Divani Chocolatier in Foxburg on Fridays from 1-3 P.M.


Rachel Brosnahan is the Community Engagement Coordinator for River Roots Redevelopment. She can be reached by email at

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