New Leaders Council (NLC) Rhode Island works to recruit, train, and promote our state’s progressive leaders. We value inclusion, equity of opportunity, civil and human rights, and collective responsibility. We carry out these values by creating a collaborative community that reflects and celebrates Rhode Island’s diversity and empowers change agents and the next generation of leaders to create positive impact in their communities.
Each year, approximately 20 Fellows are selected to participate in our five month NLC Institute and mentorship program that culminates with a capstone project. The NLC Institute creates a space for Fellows to: question the current system; think of what is possible; discover their true potential; and create an action oriented network that works collaboratively towards turning ideas into action.
Our progressive adventure began after our founding director had a first hand experience with how the legislative process really works in our beautiful State of Rhode Island. It was eye opening to see how much power was in the hands of just a few people. Frustrated by the status quo and the same players, our founding board members decided it was time to build something new. That’s when we invested in a long-term strategy to build a bench of young and diverse progressives in Rhode Island. Three founding board members traveled to New Orleans in the summer of 2011 to the NLC National Retreat to learn how to take action to begin building a more inclusive progressive movement in Rhode Island.
In our six years, NLC Rhode Island has become a trailblazer in the new and more genuine progressive movement that is happening here in Rhode Island. We have built a movement that is more inclusive and reflective of Rhode Island’s growing diversity with more people of color, women, and young people than most organizations in Rhode Island. Our work has not gone unnoticed, we were nationally recognized with the Diversity Award at our National Retreat in 2016. We are an undeniable force in the state as we work year-after-year to empower one progressive at a time expanding the tent for all progressives to fit into.
We are proudly led by a talented young board primarily made up of women of color; and our co-directors are two young women of color–born, raised, and educated in Central Falls and Woonsocket. Our organization represents Rhode Island’s progress and our state’s promising future. Our Alumni are not too bad either. NLC Rhode Island has graduated almost 100 Fellows including elected leaders like Mayor of Central Falls James Diossa, Pawtucket Councilwoman Sandra Cano, newly elected Pawtucket School Committeewoman Elena Vasquez.
- Our Alumni are diverse: 38.2 percent White, 34.5 percent Hispanic or Latino, 18.2 percent Black or African American, 14.5 percent Asian, 1.8 percent Native American, 1.8 percent Other;
- Our Alumni are young: 76 percent of Alumni are between the ages of 25 and 34;
- Our Alumni are committed: 91 percent of Alumni currently live in Rhode Island.
This year we received a record number of applications for our Institute, and after a tough selections process we are proud to announce our most dynamic class yet! Read more about the progressives to watch this year and come along with us as our progressive adventure continues!
New Leaders Council of Rhode Island Class of 2017!