Pew Launches ‘Emerging Leaders’ Program to Help Inform Philadelphia’s Next Generation of Decision-Makers

The new initiative will engage rising leaders from a range of sectors and communities to help them tackle some of the city’s biggest challenges

PHILADELPHIA—The Pew Charitable Trusts announced today that it has launched a new collaborative learning program, the Emerging Leaders Corps (ELC), as part of its commitment to support an equitable and inclusive local economy and a city where all residents can thrive. The program—which is in partnership with Anavi Strategies and Rvesta Consulting, and supported in part by the William Penn Foundation—aims to help rising Philadelphia leaders tackle some of the city’s biggest challenges by strengthening their ability to use data effectively to assess policy options and inform decision-making. Participants will also explore the intricacies of Philadelphia’s municipal budgeting process to help them better understand the fiscal opportunities and limitations that can affect policy implementation.

Additionally, Pew will use participants’ questions and feedback about specific data and policy topics to help inform future research on Philadelphia.

Nominated by city officials and leaders from the local civic, culture, education, business, and economic development sectors, the inaugural cohort of 17 participants represents a range of personal and professional backgrounds. Participants will attend eight shared-learning sessions through April 2023 that will include facilitated discussions, breakout group activities, reading assignments, and presentations by subject matter experts. The curriculum will focus on developing and strengthening important core competencies: using research and data to inform policies; building relationships; fostering critical and creative problem solving; assessing consequences and tradeoffs; and participating in continued learning. Over the course of the sessions, participants will also develop their visions for the city’s future. And the program will culminate with participants sharing their action plans for advancing those visions through continued learning, collaboration, and advocacy with policymakers and civic leaders.

Sophie Bryan, project co-director of Pew’s Philadelphia research and policy initiative, who leads the team’s policy work, said of the new program, “We’re thrilled to launch the Emerging Leaders Corps and partner with this talented and diverse group of rising leaders. Our aim is twofold: to inform and support the city’s next generation of leaders, and to expand the perspectives that shape Pew’s ongoing research and policy work in Philadelphia. We hope the knowledge, connections, and skills gained through this program will help participants make a deeper, more equitable impact on Philadelphia and its residents for years to come.”

The ELC’s learning sessions will be led by Anjali Chainani, Ph.D., founder and CEO of Anavi Strategies and former policy director for the city of Philadelphia, and Vaughn Ross, founder of Rvesta Consulting and former deputy chief of staff to Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney, along with Pew experts.

Following is a list of rising leaders selected as the ELC’s first cohort:

Rafael Álvarez Febo, vice president for advocacy and community development, Esperanza

James Campbell, senior coordinator of social impact, Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce

Mehra den Braven, re-entry housing partnerships coordinator, Office of Re-entry Partnerships, city of Philadelphia

Mike Gerrity, director of legislation, city of Philadelphia

Ashley Glasgow-Crockett, executive director of federal programs and compliance, School District of Philadelphia

Ashley Gilmore, special projects liaison for Philadelphia City Council President Darrell Clarke

Jesse Herrmann, senior strategic/service designer and director of business analyst function, Maximus

Angelique Hinton, executive director, PA Youth Vote

Rashon Howard, business development director, 1847Financial

Jude Husein, director of community mobilization, Pennsylvania State Senate

Sergio Hyland, executive assistant, Abolitionist Law Center

Rachel Kurlander, associate director, Office of Government and Community Affairs, University of Pennsylvania

Télyse Masaoay, racial equity strategist and content creator, Mayor’s Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, city of Philadelphia

Somaly Osteen, program director, Asian American Chamber of Commerce of Greater Philadelphia

Danita Reese, service design strategist, Service Design Studio, Office of the Chief Administrative Officer, city of Philadelphia

Ed Rogalski, executive director of general accounting, School District of Philadelphia

Cydnea Shearlds, director of legislation and policy, Office of Councilmember Jamie Gauthier, city of Philadelphia

For additional details about Pew’s Emerging Leaders Corps curriculum or the program’s first cohort, please contact Elizabeth Lowe at [email protected].

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The Pew Charitable Trusts is committed to helping Philadelphia by informing discussion on important policy issues facing the city, encouraging a thriving arts and cultural community, supporting the health and welfare of the region’s most vulnerable populations, and pursuing civic initiatives to strengthen the area’s appeal to residents and visitors alike. Learn more at Supporting the Greater Philadelphia Area.

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