Reflections on the 2017-2018 Emerging Leaders Program

On March 22, 2018, LEAP’s Emerging Leaders Program for nonprofit staff concluded in New York, NY. The ELP class, facilitators, coaches, trainers, funders, and LEAP friends celebrated the end of the program with a Graduation Dinner and Ceremony at China Blue. LEAP President and CEO Linda Akutagawa kicked off the dinner with a keynote speech to the ELP class on how to move forward as community leaders after the conclusion of the program. During the dinner, ELP participants shared personal stories about the program experience with the graduation guests, and each participant was presented with a plaque for their completion of the program.


2017-18 ELP Graduation

March 22, 2018 at China Blue in NYC


Testimonials from our ELP class of 2017-2018.


“Given the time we spent together getting to know each other, it was clear to see how connected we are to each other. I am leaving feeling invested in all my cohort members' lives and in our collective investment in the lives of our communities.”

“I'm glad to have met these great people and be able to learn from them. I hope to maintain these relationships as it has really helped me to transition into a better leader.”

“The cohort is amazing. I feel I can get wisdom on both my professional and personal challenges. This is a testament to everyone’s openness and values.”

“ELP helped me to identify strengths and weaknesses that were holding me back in my career with a cohort of support. Coaching helped me find solutions to addressing my personal barriers, so that I was able to grow and take the next steps. I liked how each part of the program was complimentary.”

“These few days [of ELP Part 3] have been such a reminder of the strength, brilliance, and collective wisdom of this group and of our communities and…reinvigorated my conviction in wanting to make sure that wisdom and those stories are FULLY represented in our society and that is truly necessary for equity.”


About the Emerging Leaders Program

The Emerging Leaders Program (ELP) is a three-part, six-month program designed to build nonprofit organizational capacity by developing Asian and Pacific Islander (API) staff for future and current leadership and management roles in nonprofit organizations as well as increasing the retention of APIs who are committed to working in the nonprofit sector.


Special thanks to the sponsors of the Emerging Leaders Program


The Coca-Cola Foundation


Southwest Airlines is the official airlines of the Emerging Leaders Program