The Victory Institute trains LGBT people who are interested in becoming public leaders, and provides executive development programs for those already serving who are looking to make an even bigger impact in their communities. While that normally happens a city at a time throughout the year, this week saw simultaneous programs in four cities and on three continents.
Yesterday three out elected officials became alumni of our David Bohnett LGBT Leaders Fellowship at Harvard Kennedy School in Cambridge, Mass.: City Councilwoman LaWana Mayfield of Charlotte, N.C.; Georgia state Rep. Keisha Waites; and Steven Llanusa, president of the Claremont Unified School District in California. The new Bohnett Fellows received support from the Victory Institute and the David Bohnett Foundation to attend the three-week Senior Executives in State and Local Government program for mid-career professionals.
Victory is also training nearly 40 potential LGBT political candidates this week in Portland, Ore.. That Candidate and Campaign Training, which has been held in cities across the U.S. for more than two decades, inspired Victory’s partnership with the U.S. Agency for International Development.
Now we’re working with USAID to train LGBT communities in developing countries to access democratic systems in their own countries.
This week our international team is on the ground in Belgrade, Serbia, and Lima, Peru, where dozens of LGBT leaders are learning how participating in their country’s political systems can give their community a voice in government.
Whether in North America, South America or Eastern Europe, openly LGBT people want to add their voices to the public debate over issues that affect their lives. We’re proud to be helping them do that through expert political and leadership trainings we hope will produce tomorrow’s outstanding LGBT leaders.
Photo 1: LaWana Mayfield, Stevel Llanusa, Keisha Waites
Photo 2: Portland Oregon Candidate and Campaign Training