Propper Daley

Case Study


John Legend


Tackle systemic racism by championing local change

Project Type

Signature Impact Initiative

Impact Area

Racial Justice, Civic Engagement

Client Type


Client Need

In 2020, John Legend was witnessing social injustices and the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, and recognized the roots of these crises were decades of underinvestment in certain communities. John  was inspired to launch HUMANLEVEL, an initiative to uplift communities disproportionately impacted by institutionalized racism. HUMANLEVEL works with elected officials and community members to develop and implement projects that address immediate needs at the city and local level while advocating for more equitable policies at a local, state, and federal level.

Our Approach

Propper Daley worked with John to research the field, understand local systems, architect an impact framework, and develop partnerships. In 2020, we kicked off the first phase HUMANLEVEL by building a national partnership with FUSE Corps to place Executive Fellows in 11 communities: Atlanta, Austin, Birmingham, Durham, Houston, Los Angeles, Milwaukee, New Orleans, Oakland, Pittsburgh and Washington, D.C. — cities and counties that collectively represent over 25 million people. These fellows are working with local governments to develop strategic impact projects designed to address immediate needs while working toward sustainable and equitable policies in the areas of jobs, housing, education, health, and the criminal justice system.


HUMANLEVEL publicly launched in October 2021. To introduce this work to mainstream audiences, Propper Daley produced a sizzle video that was viewed more than 300,000 times across multiple platforms. Additionally, John embarked on a media tour, appearing on The Daily Show, The Washington Post, Politico and other outlets discuss the initiative. As HUMANLEVEL continues to grow, John is using his platform to share a message that the local government can, and should, work for everyone, highlight good ideas in the mainstream, and advance effective policy.

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