In 1995, Dr. Fairchild founded the Community and Economic Development Department at Los Angeles Trade-Technical College and an affiliated non-profit community development research and technical assistance organization, CDTech. She helped launch the college’s Regional Economic Development Institute to provide inner-city residents with career and technical education for high-growth/high-demand jobs in the L.A. region. From 1989 to 1994, Dr. Fairchild directed the L.A. office of the Local Initiatives Support Corporation and is credited with raising over $100 million in equity, grants and loans for community-based housing and commercial development projects and, generally, with building the the L.A. region's nonprofit housing and community development industry.
Her civic and political appointments have included the California Commission on Regionalism, the California Economic Strategy Panel, the California Local Economic Development Association, the Urban Land Institute National Inner City Advisor, the Coalition for Women's Economic Development and the Los Angeles Environmental Quality Board. She also served as Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa's special advisor for South LA Investments.