New Leaders Council Announces 2018 Fellows Class

New Leaders Council New Jersey, the local chapter of the nation’s leading organization for progressive Millennial thought leadership and skills-based training announced today the selection of 21 Fellows to the 2018 NLC Institute.  Throughout the winter and spring, 2018 Fellows will attend skills-based trainings, be provided with a mentor and develop a Capstone Project in New Jersey to prepare them to be the changemakers of the future.


“New Leaders Council New Jersey is thrilled to welcome these 21 individuals as members of our growing cohort in 2018,” said Katie Brennan, Director of New Leaders Council New Jersey. “These new fellows are already exemplary members of New Jersey, and through the NLC Institute, they will acquire the skills, training and network to focus their efforts on real and systemic change for New Jersey and for our country.”


The 2018 NLC New Jersey fellows are:


·       Jesus Alcazar – Director of Media and Outreach, NJ State Legislature 

·       Jonathan Barnett – Staff Member, Governor-Elect Phil Murphy                   

·       Ashley Bennett – Psychiatric Emergency Screener, Cape Counseling Services, Inc.                

·       Raoul Bhatta  – Urban Health Physician             

·       Ruell Brown – Software Engineer, MLB Advanced Media (BAMTECH Media)

·       Johanna Calle – Program Coordinator, New Jersey Alliance for Immigrant Justice

·       Tiffany Chang – Government and Community Engagement Coordinator, Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts 

·       Magdala Chery – Assistant Professor of Medicine/Faculty Practice Physician, Rowan University    

·       Michael Enich – Medical Student, Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School

·       Steven Galante – Communications Coordinator, The Citizens Campaign        

·       Dianna Houenou – Policy Counsel, American Civil Liberties Union of New Jersey  

·       Charity Jeffries – Campaign Operative               

·       Garrison Keck – Political Coordinator, Northeast Regional Council of Carpenters                    

·       Andrew Macurdy – Assistant Prosecutor, Hudson County Prosecutor’s Office       

·       Andrea McChristian – Associate Counsel, New Jersey Institute for Social Justice   

·       Jason McSheene – Medical Writer, Apothecom  

·       Cristian Moreno-Rodriguez – Community Organizer, New Jersey Working Families Alliance       

·       Nedia Morsy – Organizer, Make the Road New Jersey 

·       Johnny Quispe – PhD Student, Rutgers University-New Brunswick, Graduate Program in Ecology and Evolution

·       Rebecca Roberts – Manager, Energy Efficiency & Demand Management, Consolidated Edison Company of NY    

·       Dennis Zeveloff – Transition Staffer, State of New Jersey  


Read more about the 2018 NLC NJ fellows class here.


These fellows join the national class of nearly 900 fellows in 50 NLC chapters across the country.  Nationally, the new Fellows class self-identified as is the most diverse in the organization’s history with 63 percent non-white, 61 percent female, and 17 percent LGBTQ+.  


“NLC is proud to announce its largest and most diverse cohort yet.  In 50 cities and states, our fellows will be driving change in their communities and their workplaces,” said Mark Riddle, President, New Leaders Council. “These nearly 900 individuals are the future of our country, ensuring a more progressive and prosperous future.” 


The NLC Institute is a six-month training program focused on skills transfer for each cohort on issues such as entrepreneurial goal setting, strategic communications and digital outreach, economics, finance and fundraising, management and coalition building, progressive policy, and diversity and inclusion.


Chosen fellows went through a rigorous, locally-driven selections process including an application with an essay component and an in-person interview.  Roughly 25 percent of those who applied to the Institute were accepted nationally.


NLC Fellows are paired with a mentor who is a professional in their field. Through the mentorship program, Fellows are exposed to successful individuals who are committed to supporting the next generation of progressive leaders. 


NLC Fellows are civic, social, and business entrepreneurs who lead the charge on the ground to solve the most critical challenges facing our communities.  NLC’s Capstone Project, a cornerstone of our Institutes, challenges Fellows to identify a project that captures their passion, fills a need in the community, and leverages the skills NLC provides through the Fellowship in order to come up with a plan to address it head on. This is where NLC’s training effectively comes to life.


New Leaders Council New Jersey graduated its first cohort of Fellows in 2011 and has since provided skills-based, leadership training for more than 125 New Jerseyans.  NLC NJ alumni are leaders in business, nonprofit and government, among others, with nine alumni currently holding public office from school board to freeholder. NLC NJ is supported by Honorary Co-Chairs Senator-elect Troy Singleton and Patti McGuire of Princeton Public Affairs Group and a robust Advisory Board of New Jersey leaders.


Once this class of fellows completes the Institute in June 2018, they will join NLC’s robust alumni network of nearly 6,000 changemakers nationwide.

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