The mission of Leadership Jacksonville is to educate, connect and inspire diverse leaders to build and strengthen their communities. Since the first class in 1976-77, over 2300 alumni have completed the yearlong program. The program creates a collaborative space for open dialogue between leaders with diverse perspectives to address major areas of community concern such as poverty, education, arts, economic growth and more. Together they explore dynamics of urban society, analyzing major areas of community concern, facilitating development of leadership capacity and promoting a network of community trustees.
The wave of diversity changes implemented since the wake of George Floyd’s tragic death has continued to shake up America and Jacksonville is not excluded from the inclusion. In it’s most sweeping debut yet, Leadership Jacksonville, the city’s foremost leadership development think tank, has unveiled its 2021 class with over a dozen participants of color. The 45 year old organizations, which strives to reflect the demographics of the community, previously averaged 5 – 8 African American in its much sought after cohorts but has grown steadily each year. each year the organization combs through hundreds of applications to select the most promising students to benefit from its rigorous program.
The recent class of 56 community leaders will lead the charge reflecting the much noticed diversity.
“Participants from 44 classes have completed this flagship program with a better understanding of our community’s issues and assets,” said Jill Langford Dame, Chief Executive Officer of Leadership Jacksonville. “They continue to use their new connections and what they learn to make a positive difference,” said Leadership Jacksonville Chief Executive Officer Jill Langford Dame.