Local Professionals Selected for New, Two-Year Leadership and Career Development Program
Created by The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven in partnership with UCONN
New Haven, CT (August 31, 2021) The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven (The Foundation) is excited to announce the members of the first BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and Persons of Color) Cohort for Nonprofit Leadership program. The new career development program was conceived in early 2021 as part of The Foundation’s Stepping Forward commitment to help the Greater New Haven community recover from the impact of COVID-19 and to advance racial equity throughout the region.
“Recognizing that current nonprofit executive leaders are retiring, we saw an opportunity to help create a pipeline for new, more diverse leadership. This program intentionally focuses on building leadership and practical skills of people of color who are already part of the local nonprofit workforce and aspire to senior positions,” says Jackie Downing, Director of Grantmaking and Nonprofit Support at The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven.
The program framework was designed by co-leads: Dr. David Garvey, Director of the University of Connecticut (UConn) Department of Public Policy’s Nonprofit Leadership Program and Management Consultant Cynthia Rojas, along with adjunct instructor topic experts and seasoned practitioners.
“When The Community Foundation was creating this new program in collaboration with our Nonprofit Leadership Program at UConn, it was important to both of us to gather input and ideas from the guest lecturers and seasoned professionals leading the instruction, as well as to understand the perspectives and priorities of the program cohort participants themselves,” said Garvey. “Understanding the participants’ perspectives and priorities for what they seek to gain from the program helps to support their commitment to this experience and better equips instructors to tailor the learning experience for maximum impact.”
The program officially kicks off in September when the BIPOC Cohort will meet for the first time as a collective to attend the first in a series of trainings over 9 months. The lesson plan includes topics on: racial equity and system change, governance, leading and cultivating strategic partnerships, community engagement, strategic planning, budgeting, evaluation, advocacy, fundraising and communications. Compensation for the absence of Cohort participants from their regular work schedule due to training will be provided to the participants’ nonprofit organizations in the form of a general operating support grant from The Foundation. Participants will also receive undergraduate or graduate credit and a $1,000 scholarship toward future studies at UConn. After the UConn training component, participants will lead their respective organizations in an organizational assessment and take charge of the conversation with staff and Board to implement associated recommended changes.
2021 BIPOC Cohort Members:
Citywide Youth Coalition
Jahnice Cajigas (she/her/hers) is the Director of Organizing for the Citywide Youth Coalition Inc. Jahnice is also a Strategy Council and Board member for the Perrin Family Foundation. She has previously interned for Planned Parenthood of Southern New England and with them helped successfully launch the state's first queer camp specifically for youth of color and one of the only in the country. For Jahnice the camp is more than just a program, it's providing a space she always wished to have offered to her. Jahnice has been a community organizer for the past seven years working on issues including LGBTQ+ rights, juvenile justice reform and the miseducation of our education system, among other issues.
Antonio L. Coles, 2nd
Antonio L. Coles, 2nd (he/him) is a Quality Assurance Specialist at Columbus House. He is an experienced social activist, youth leader and minister. Antonio's passion for helping youth can be traced back to Mt. Olive A.M.E. Zion Church, where he spent significant time working on facilitating spaces for youth and helping young people reach their potential. He has worked in the digital media industry for 10 years, gaining experience in video, editing, photography, and broadcasting. As a seasoned Content Producer, he is passionate about giving a voice to those who have none and teaching youth the skills needed to be a force in the industry. In addition to audio visual engineering, he is also involved in IT.
Frankie Douglass (she/they) is a New Haven native who is passionate about the wellbeing of the New Haven community. After graduating from Johnson & Wales University with a B.S. in Culinary Nutrition, Frankie returned to New Haven to pursue a career in food justice and public health. Frankie has a lot of experience delivering cooking and nutrition education through CitySeed and Gather New Haven. Frankie sits on the New Haven Food Policy Council representing CitySeed and was recently appointed to the new state-wide Connecticut Department of Agriculture DEI Working Group. Frankie currently works as the breastfeeding-focused Community Health Worker at CARE.
Children's Center of Hamden
Chanelle (she/her/hers) is a Human Resources Coordinator. She holds a degree in Health Science from Kaplan University and a certificate in Ministry and Theology from Princeton Theological Seminary. Chanelle served in the Army Reserve as a Combat Medic/Health Care Specialist and has volunteered for various nonprofits, including serving as an executive board member for Clinton College National Alumni Association and the Elm City Freddy Fixer Parade Committee. She is a member of Yale-Griffin Prevention Research Center Community Advisory Group, Newhallville Management Team, and the NAACP Greater New Haven branch, and she has completed the CARE New Haven Health Leaders Program and NHS Resident Leader Program.
Christian (he/him/his) is the Director of College Access and Persistence at Squash Haven. His work is fueled by a lifelong passion for using education to empower communities of color and low-income families. Christian comes from a diverse background in education, having worked in public and private schools, nonprofits, and test prep settings. Christian graduated with honors from Amherst College, with a B.A. in English and Sociology. Christian is a first-generation college graduate and proud Jack Kent Cooke Foundation Scholar. Christian participated in the New Haven Community Leadership Program and is a Fellow in the inaugural class of the Access to Law School Program launched by Professor James Forman and the students at Yale Law School.
Fair Haven Community Health Care
Victoria Massey, D.M.D. (she/ her/ hers) is a practicing General Dentist and Interim Dental Director at Fair Haven Community Health Care in New Haven, CT. Dr. Massey is a product of University of Connecticut (UConn), graduating from UConn in the dual degree B.S./D.M.D. Program and the UConn School of Dental Medicine. She completed an AEGD Residency at New York University Langone through Holyoke Community Health Center. Dr. Massey’s passions include: patient advocacy, vulnerable populations and social determinants of health. She is core dental faculty for UConn Health’s Urban Service Track and an associate professor for UConn's School of Pharmacy where she shares those passions with both students and the community.
New Haven Pride Center
Ala Ochumare (she/her) is the Youth Program Manager at the New Haven Pride Center in New Haven, CT. She is one of the founding members and Principal Organizer of New Haven’s chapter of BlackLivesMatter. Ala is also one of the three creators and facilitators of the Marsha P. Johnson Black and Brown Queer Camp supported and housed by City Wide Youth Coalition and New Haven Pride Center. She is Creator and Lead Guide of “ABAR 4 you” a series of Abolitionist Anti-bias Anti-Racist workshops, trainings and consultation guides. Ala is a graduate of BOLD AMANDLA Cohort 2019, CEIO Organizer’s Path, The City of New Haven Democracy School cohort 2018-2019 as well as a graduate of Yale University and Southern Connecticut State University’s, CARE New Haven Health Leaders program.
Connecting through Literacy: Incarcerated Parents, Their Children and Caregivers (CLICC)
Landon Osborn (he/him/his) is the Program Manager for CLICC, a Connecticut based non-profit that provides services to children and families impacted by the criminal Justice system. He is a CT Licensed Master Social Worker from New Haven, CT, with over 12 years of nonprofit work experience. Outside of CLICC, Landon serves as a Clinical Therapist and an Adjunct Faculty for the University of Connecticut’s Master of Social Work Program. He is currently on Bereavement Care Network’s advisory committee and Community Action Agency of New Haven’s Advisory and Research Engagement Committee. Landon received his M.S.W. Degree from the University of Connecticut in 2015 and a B.S. degree from Southern Connecticut State University in 2012.
CT Women's Education and Legal Fund
Nicole Sanclemente (she/her/hers/ella) is the Policy and Program Coordinator for the Connecticut Women’s Education and Legal Fund (CWEALF). Nicole supports both CWEALF’s Public Policy and Legal Education programs. Nicole graduated from the University of Connecticut in 2019 with a Bachelor of Arts in Urban and Community Studies, and a double minor in Psychology and Human Rights. After graduating, Nicole worked as a Legal Assistant for an immigration law firm in North Haven before taking a position with CWEALF. She is fluent in English and Spanish, and has served CWEALF as a Bilingual Advocacy Fellow and as a volunteer interpreter for UConn School of Law’s Asylum Seeker/Refugee Clinic in 2018-2019.
Kimani Sioux Williams
The Storehouse Project
Kimani Sioux Williams joined The Storehouse Project in October of 2018 and is the organization's Operations Director. She is drawn to purpose-driven work and finds great fulfillment in using her God given gifts of administration, empathy and compassion to serve people in need in the greater Milford area. She has also interned for the Cornerstone Christian Center in Milford.
About The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven
The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven in Connecticut is one of the oldest and largest community foundations in the U.S. and was established in 1928 as the permanent charitable endowment for New Haven and its surrounding communities of: Ansonia, Bethany, Branford, Cheshire, Derby, East Haven, Guilford, Hamden, Madison, Milford, North Branford, North Haven, Orange, Oxford, Seymour, Shelton, Wallingford, West Haven, and Woodbridge. In 2020, The Foundation began implementing a 5-year strategic plan and enacted new mission and vision statements toward expanding opportunity and equity in Greater New Haven. In 2021, it launched Stepping Forward, a $26 million commitment to addressing the impact of COVID-19 and advancing racial equity. The Foundation’s mission is to inspire, support, inform, listen to and collaborate with the people and organizations of Greater New Haven to build an ever more connected, inclusive, equitable and philanthropic community.
For more than three generations, generous local donors have built The Community Foundation’s endowment by establishing permanent funds or making gifts to existing funds that distribute grants to a broad variety of issues and organizations. These donors, past and present, make their gifts to ensure that programs and causes that matter most to them will be supported today and forever. As of December 31, 2020, The Foundation’s assets were valued at more than $720 million. For more information about The Foundation visit www.cfgnh.org or follow @cfgnh on facebook and twitter.
Director of Communications