Economic Opportunity Leadership Academy | United Way of Metropolitan Dallas

Economic Opportunity
Leadership Academy

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Local Area Funders Launch Dallas Economic Opportunity Leadership Academy in Collaboration with the Aspen Institute and Corporation for a Skilled Workforce


Contact: Andrea Glispie, (214)978-2048,

August 14, 2019Dallas –  Communities Foundation of Texas, JPMorgan Chase and United Way of Metropolitan Dallas announced today that they will be sponsoring the Economic Opportunity Leadership Academy, a new program designed to develop a local network of community leaders to collaborate on systemic solutions to economic challenges facing job seekers, workers, and businesses. The Aspen Institute Economic Opportunities Program will partner with the Corporation for a Skilled Workforce, and a local advisory council comprised of leaders from the public, private and philanthropic sectors to run the Academy.

The Dallas Economic Opportunity Leadership Academy is designed to expand the number of leaders who can develop equitable employment and economic mobility opportunities for economically vulnerable and underserved populations in ways that align with Dallas’ needs for long-term growth and competitiveness. The Academy is the latest in a series hosted in communities across the United States and Canada.

Fellows will be selected in a competitive application process. The funders and partners encourage applications from senior-level managers from a wide diversity of organizations, including the public workforce sector, economic development, health and human services, nonprofit job training and work-readiness providers, community colleges or universities, community- and faith-based organizations, business associations and other relevant agencies who have the authority to implement changes.

Applications are available online here. The deadline for submissions is August 28, 2019. Interested applicants can learn more about the Academy by accessing a recording of a recent informational webinar here. Applications will be reviewed by members of the Dallas Economic Opportunity Leadership Academy Local Advisory Council and final selections for the inaugural cohort with be made by the Academy’s sponsors.

“As Dallas continues to grow and change, ensuring the community’s vitality requires equipping the next generation of local leaders with content knowledge and skills to advance economic opportunity for all,” said Sarah Cotton Nelson, Chief Philanthropy Officer, Communities Foundation of Texas. “We’re excited to be able to offer, in partnership with JP Morgan Chase and United Way of Metropolitan Dallas, this professional development opportunity for local leaders to help them learn and think critically about economic challenges and develop sustainable solutions to address those.

The Academy will create and support a peer-learning community of economic opportunity and workforce leaders with a one-year educational and networking experience to help them manage the challenges they face in addressing changes in technology, business norms and policy. These senior-level fellows will work with leading practitioners from around the US, learn about practical planning tools and collaborate to reflect on and develop effective strategies to strengthen the Dallas community. Alumni of the Academies become part of the Aspen Institute Economic Fellows Network.

“Together with our valued partners Communities Foundation of Texas and JPMorgan Chase, we are leading the charge toward expanding opportunity and mobility for all North Texans,” said Jennifer Sampson, McDermott-Templeton President and CEO, United Way of Metropolitan Dallas. “The Academy has extraordinary potential to achieve lasting results for Dallas by equipping and empowering families to become financially stable.”

“We look forward to working with the Dallas leaders and seeing what they can accomplish over the next year as they work and learn together,” said Sheila Maguire, senior fellow at the Aspen Institute Economic Opportunities Program and director of the local network of Workforce Leadership Academies. “The Academies are a rare opportunity for reflection for these local leaders and will help to build a long-lasting network that can help get more people into quality jobs in Dallas.”

This article was published on: Aug 27, 2019