As Austinites, we’re blessed to live in a city that is progressive, experiential, experimental, game-changing, conscious and, lets face it, awesomely cool. In such a city, you’d expect the population to match, and in the ATX, we don’t disappoint. This Capital City is chock-full of amazing citizens who strive to better the city on a daily basis. From writers to activists, entrepreneurs to artists, we’ve rounded up a diverse group of Austinites that help make this city great.
While you might not know his name or exactly what he does, chances are you’ve seen Harold McMillan and benefitted from his hard work—especially if you’ve spent any time in East Austin or enjoyed it’s vibrant music scene. As founder/director of DiverseArts Culture Works, an Austin nonprofit producer of multidisciplinary art and culture projects and programs, McMillan has been involved and highly active in Austin’s eclectic art and music community for the past 20 years. “I came here for graduate school and fully expected that I’d move on after,” he says. “Then I got hooked on doing cultural work here because I saw needs that were not being addressed. Young and idealistic, I thought I would be able to make an impact.” He was right, and the need for what he is doing continues to grow, especially as our city grows. “The direction that Austin is headed continues to reaffirm the need for the work,” says McMillan. “There is a lot of growth but there is much that is being lost and not respected as important. I feel like part of my work’s mission is to combat that.”