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Detroit (January 26, 2017) – JPMorgan Chase & Co., in partnership with Corporation for a Skilled Workforce (CSW) and The Aspen Institute, today announced the selection of twenty-two participants for the first ever Detroit Workforce System Leadership Development Academy (Academy).

The Academy will leverage and build on the expertise of leaders across the workforce ecosystem through an intensive twelve month learning program, led by local Detroit leaders and guest faculty from across the nation, providing the group with an opportunity to collaborate on developing practical solutions to solve some of the city’s most challenging workforce issues.

As part of JPMorgan Chase’s $100 million commitment to the city’s economic recovery, the company awarded $200,000 to CSW to allow the Academy to leverage and build on the expertise of leaders across the workforce community to help these workforce leaders to better engage employers, understand industry workforce needs, develop successful career pathway strategies and strengthen connections between training providers, job seekers and employers.

“As a result of this program, this exciting group of local leaders will be able to come up with innovative and practical solutions that connect Detroiters to open jobs in a way they’ve never done before. The Academy will help advance the city’s focus on creating high-quality and reducing the skills mismatch between local employers and job hunters,” said Chauncy Lennon, Head of Workforce Initiatives, JPMorgan Chase.

The program includes an opening retreat in late January, five full day working sessions from March to September, a second retreat in November, and a closing capstone presentation event in December. The Academy is anchored in a world-class sector skills development model, grounded in practical application of innovative practices, and backed by an executive-level Detroit-based council of leaders. It is one in a number of strategies aimed at preparing the City’s next cohort of workforce system leaders to help offer solutions to some of Detroit’s most intractable workforce issues.

“This cohort of 22 leaders represents a direct investment in the bedrock of the Detroit workforce system that will influence organizations key to the city’s growth and pay dividends for years to come,” said Jeannine La Prad, President and CEO, Corporation for a Skilled Workforce.

The following 22 individuals comprise the 2017 cohort:

  • Kristen Barnes-Holiday, Director of Program Outcomes for Reading Works Detroit
  • Sister Janice Brown, Executive Director for Dominican Literacy Center
  • Jacqueline Burau, Senior Program Officer for Detroit Local Initiative Support Corporation (LISC)
  • Devon Buskin, Senior Program Officer for The Greening of Detroit
  • Emily Dieppa, Executive Director for CarePath Career Center
  • Brittany Foley, Program Manager for Michigan Community Services
  • Shawna Forbes, Vice Chancellor, School of Continuing Education and Workforce Development for Wayne County Community College District
  • Mary Freeman, Director, Workforce Development for Southwest Solutions
  • Naheed Huq, Manager of Talent and Economic Development for Southeast Michigan Council of Governments (SEMCOG)
  • Marcus Jones, Director for Detroit Training Center
  • Tammie Jones, VP, College and Career Pathways, and CEO for LinkedLearning, UW-SEM
  • Ann Leen, Assistant Vice President of Youth Services for SER Metro
  • Ricardo Marble, Director of Youth Services for the city of Detroit
  • Teresa McFadden, Director of Operations-Detroit for Vehicles for Change
  • Choike Mose-Telesford, Deputy Director of Workforce Development Office for the city of Detroit
  • Stephanie Nixon, Director of Program and Service Innovation for Detroit Employment Solutions Corporation
  • Hachem Ossarian, Operations Manager for ACCESS
  • Veronica Sanchez Peavy, Sr. Assistant Vice President (Adult Programs) and Regional Director for SER Metro
  • Sarah Sebaly, Senior Program Manager, Workforce Intelligence Network/Southeast Michigan Community Alliance
  • Robert Shimkoski, Director, Policy Planning & Resource Development for the Detroit Employment Solutions Corporation
  • Edward Steinberger, Director, Detroit Career Center for Goodwill Industries
  • Rashida Thomas, Director, Workforce Development & Education for Focus:HOPE

Academy project leaders from Corporation for a Skilled Workforce and Aspen Institute sought potential Workforce System Leadership Academy Fellows in mid-to-senior level management positions with authority to implement organizational and program changes and who are high-performing, high-potential candidates for more senior roles within their own organizations or elsewhere in the system. Applications were solicited from candidates working in diverse organizations, including public workforce, economic development, health and human service agencies, nonprofit job training and work-readiness providers, community colleges or universities, community-based and faith-based organizations, business associations, unions, and other relevant agencies. Selections were made based on comprehensive application submissions from the candidates, with input and feedback from the WSLDA advisory council members.

About Corporation for a Skilled Workforce
Corporation for a Skilled Workforce is a national non-profit organization that partners with philanthropy, government, business, and community leaders to connect workers with good jobs, increase the competitiveness of companies, and build sustainable communities. For over 25 years, we have been an effective catalyst for change. We identify opportunities for innovation in work and learning and provoke transformative change in policy and practice. We have worked with dozens of workforce investment boards, state and local workforce agencies, community-based organizations, and community colleges to create lasting impact through their collaborative action. For nearly a decade, CSW has been a partner in Detroit’s workforce system. From research and strategic planning and counsel to implementation support, CSW has been partnered with the Mayor’s Workforce Development Board, Mayor’s Office of Workforce Development, Detroit Employment Solutions Corp. (DESC), local philanthropic investors, the Detroit Regional Workforce Fund, and community-based organizations in support of the Mayor’s vision to prepare and connect thousands more Detroiters to jobs and career pathways.

About The Aspen Institute
The Aspen Institute is an educational and policy studies organization based in Washington DC. Its mission is to spark intellectual inquiry and exchange, create a diverse worldwide community of leaders committed to the greater good, and provide a nonpartisan forum for reaching solutions on vital public policy issues. The Aspen Institute’s Economic Opportunities Program (Aspen Institute EOP) advances promising strategies and policies to help low- and moderate-income people thrive in today’s dynamic economy. For nine years The Aspen Institute’s Economy Opportunities Program led the Aspen Sector Skills Academy (SSA), a year-long leadership program. The goal of the SSA was to improve the quantity, quality, and sustainability of sector efforts on the ground. This was done by developing the competencies and leadership of senior managers to use sectoral approaches and to strengthen the organizational capacity of their institutions to achieve lasting sectoral change. Over 200 workforce leaders are alumni of the SSA, drawn from organizations such as non-profit workforce training programs, local workforce agencies, community colleges, unions, and worker centers.

About JPMorgan Chase
JPMorgan Chase & Co. is a leading global financial services firm with assets of $2.5 trillion and operations worldwide. The Firm is a leader in investment banking, financial services for consumers and small businesses, commercial banking, financial transaction processing, and asset management. A component of the Dow Jones Industrial Average, JPMorgan Chase & Co. serves millions of consumers in the United States and many of the world's most prominent corporate, institutional and government clients under its J.P. Morgan and Chase brands. Information about JPMorgan Chase & Co. is available at

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