State of Emerge-A-City (SOE) partners with local organizations, schools and churches to deliver cultured experiences, mentoring, and community-impact projects. It is the goal of SOE to restore value & quality of life to under-served youth by empowering our participants to become advocates of positive social change.


State of Emerge-A-City, NFP believes that every young person, everywhere deserves to live a life full of opportunities, happiness, peace and well-being.  SOE desires to reverse the acceptance of violence by challenging perceptions, and hopelessness.  


State of Emerge-A-City (SOE) works to decrease violence by elevating one's mindset through exposure to a better way of living. SOE's purpose is to inspire social change, promote philanthropy and broaden the horizons of marginalized youth, to realize their full potential. We are committed to facilitating an environment for personal growth, with the primary transformation being the mentality shift from victim to victor.

What We Do

State of Emerge-A-City (SOE) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that declares a need for immediate support to high-crime, low-income communities suffering from human-made disaster and civil unrest; similar to a

"State of Emergency."

SOE promote the belief that if everyone makes one small contribution towards this mission, we will see big transformations, positive impacts and a decrease in violence. Our program enlightens our participants and the community on core values of unity, conflict resolution, self-empowerment, leadership, philanthropy, social change, spiritual growth and positive over negative dispositions, among other vital life skills. SOE instill our core values into our participants through fun outings, club meetings and immediate rewards for achieving their goals. SOE is committed to empowering youth through exposure to a better way of living and constructive behavior. 

This organization is designed to get our youth excited about life and their future. Every program has educational value and life skills to empower our youth using curriculum rooted in leadership development and social consciousness. Supporting the supreme goal of decreasing violence and creating social advancement that offers an equitable opportunity for underrepresented communities to achieve  their highest aspirations and goals!


Board of Directors

MaCassa Johnson- PRESIDENT
MaCassa Johnson Founded State of Emerge-A-City (SOE) in 2016. She holds a degree in Sociology and has worked in the social service sector for over a decade. MaCassa has a Bachelor’s Degree in Sociology from Chicago State University and obtaining a Masters in Community & Economic Development from Penn State University.
Bernadette Johnson-TREASUER
Bernadette Johnson-Banks has over 25 years of experience working for Cook County school districts as an Administrator. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Social Work from the University of Illinois at Chicago. Bernadette brings her work experience with disciplinary and behavioral issues of adolescents in the educational system, along with her personal experience, to the Organization’s efforts.
Geraldine Winfrey
Board Member
Philip Egler
Philip Egler graduated from Northern Illinois University with a Bachelor of Liberal Arts & Science in Psychology. He is a father, a mentor and passionate about bringing progressive change by aiding youth. Philip is also a musician, songwriter, producer & musical engineer.
Catherine Pierson- BOARD MEMBER
Catherine Pierson is the Director of Volunteer and Community Relations at The Leadershop, a nonprofit focusing on developing community leaders. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology from the University of Iowa. Catherine brings decades of nonprofit work experience in community development to the Organization’s efforts.
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MaCassa Johnson

Bernadette Banks


Geraldine Winfrey

Board Member 

Philip Egler

Board Member

Cathy Pierson

Advisory Member 

2020 Board Meeting Schedule

Saturday, February 15th        10:00am - 12:00pm

Saturday, May 16th                 10:00am - 12:00pm 

Saturday, August 15th            10:00am - 12:00pm

Saturday, November 21st      10:00am - 12:00pm

  • Board meetings are open to public unless indicated as 'CLOSED'

  • Meetings are held quarterly on the third Saturday at the LaGrange Library: 

10 W. Cossitt Ave, La Grange, IL ​

*Meeting Schedule subject to change



1136 S. Delano Court West

Suite B201

Chicago, IL 60605


T  855. SOE. 3111 (855.763.3111)

F  312.873.3957

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