THE DEMA MainStreet approach is a long-term effort to maintain and enhance downtown Encinitas. In 2008, DEMA and its 200 current business members and dozens of past members will celebrate its 20-year anniversary of revitalizing, restoring and promoting downtown Encinitas.
MainStreet is a revitalization strategy used in over 1,200 cities and 40 states. Developed by the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s National MainStreet Center, the program encourages imaginative use of business and government resources to support local downtown and neighborhood commercial district revitalization efforts. The DEMA MainStreet approach is based on a National four point program and relies on eight guiding principles to produce fundamental change in traditional commercial business districts.
DEMA’s mission and mantra are dedicated to the Historic Preservation and renewal of Historic downtown Encinitas: “Downtown Encinitas – a place to Live, Work, and Play.” It is a non-profit corporation and a part of a national association of MainStreet Cities. Two full-time DEMA staff members and its Board of Directors implement the programs to effect positive change in the coastal area of Encinitas. The program hires an executive director, a position currently held by Dody Tucker, to manage the program, coordinate volunteers, assist with program implementation, and act as a primary spokesperson for the organization. Staff members, including the executive director, report to the Board of Directors. Depending on local needs and resources, the organization may hire more than one staff member. Often, additional staff will focus on a specific aspect of the revitalization effort, such as business development, property development, or coordination of promotional activities. The Board includes a variety of representatives from the community, primarily made up of business and property owners. The Board guides policy, funding, and planning for DEMA’s activities.