Waco Chat

Having a Drink with Cuevas Peacock

By Kevin Tankersley

Community Developer

“It’s small enough to make a significant impact.”

[My job at Baylor is] part of a new presidential initiative, the Solid Gold Neighbor initiative. It’s an effort for Baylor to become a better neighbor to the Waco community. It focuses on how Baylor can support Waco in the areas of education, economic development, health and city growth. The first three are kind of self-explanatory. The last one is how can Baylor make Waco a destination place for postgraduates, that students are seeing the fun side of Waco.

I am brand-new to Baylor but not to Waco. I was with a local nonprofit called Grassroots Community Development, working here in East Waco as a community organizer, building relationships with people — the business sector, the church sector, the school sector, neighborhood associations sector — identifying some ways they want to see their community grow and working alongside them to help them get there.

I’m passionate about supporting people, passionate about growing communities. I think in this role, Baylor is going to allow me to explore and expand that passion to ensure that as a community we all grow together and we all grow to the best of our ability.

Peacock chose to meet at the Boardwalk on Elm food truck at 904 Elm Avenue, “because it’s right in the middle of an area that I’m really passionate about.” For his drink: a tropical fruit-flavored Kool-Aid pickle. “It’s a mix of sour and sweet,” he said. “You can get the best of both worlds, and they have so many different flavors. It’s a drink and a snack.”

I come from a family of educators. My mother is a librarian. I have a big library. I’m reading Henry Mintzberg’s ‘Rebalancing Society.’ It looks at how we can rebalance society to be more inclusive in what he calls the plural sector. He breaks society into three sectors: public sector (the government), private sector (the business world), and the plural sector (nonprofits, universities, churches). By bringing these sectors to the forefront, how can we have a better society by ensuring that nonprofits do their part in making the world a better place?

I like that [Waco] is growing. I like that it’s open to young people like myself who want to come in and want to make a difference. It’s small enough to get connected. It’s small enough to make a significant impact and significant change. But at the same time, it’s big enough to experience all the fun things of life.

I get a trim every week, but for the length, I haven’t cut my locks since 2008. It allowed me to step out on the journey of self-growth. As my dreads have grown, I have grown as well. Each dread tells a story. Each length, when I look back, talks about a different part of my life.

Cuevas Peacock is the assistant director of community relations-cultural wealth in Baylor University’s Office of External Affairs, a position he’s held just since September. He is also one of eight members of the Greater Waco Chamber of Commerce Waco Under 40.

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