top of page
YALP logo Milwaukee.png

Young American Leaders Program

Every summer, Harvard Business School convenes, from cities around America, groups of young leaders who are working across sectors to help their communities prosper. Beginning in 2018, Milwaukee was invited to be a part of this learning and networking building experience.



The Young American Leaders Program (YALP)grows out of a deep concern and a great hope uncovered by Harvard Business School’s ongoing project on U.S. Competitiveness.


The concern is that the local, shared resources which drive American prosperity are not keeping pace with global standards. Our work force skills, schools, and infrastructure, for instance, are not improving as fast as we need or, in too many cases, are deteriorating. As a result, an unsustainable divergence has gripped in the U.S. economy; the many Americans who rely on such shared resources are struggling, even as firms and individuals who can tap global opportunities are thriving. Prosperity is being generated but not shared. Our hope springs from the local level. In cities and towns across the country, we see local policymakers, business people, nonprofit leaders, educators, clergy, and others coming together across sectors to build skills, improve schools, restore infrastructure, and so on.


YALP is an effort to fan the flames of local sparks like these. The Program aims to develop leaders like these. The Program aims to develop leaders who understand such cross-sector collaborations for shared prosperity and can implement them more effectively and spread them more rapidly than in the past. The aim of YALP has even greater urgency in a time of pandemic and a long overdue racial reckoning. Today, the inequities and divisions in America’s communities are painfully clear and damaging. Our country desperately needs young leaders who can come together across boundaries not only to restore our communities but also to reimagine them.

Thank you YALP sponsors:


Southwest Airlines



Toward that end, in June 2021 we will gather ten-person teams from selected cities, convening online national and, if circumstances allow, in-person locally. For five intense days, the group will learn about cross-sector collaborations – best and worst practices from across the country and across the globe. Through case-method discussions and drawing on the experiences of the leaders themselves, HBS faculty will bring out:


  • Insight into where America and American cities stand today;

  • Examples of innovative cross-sector collaborations that improve cities standing—for instance, in workforce skills, K-12 education, infrastructure, and economic development; and

  • Personal lessons about collaborative leadership.


Running through the Program will be opportunities for city teams to apply the ideas to their hometowns – to envision new cross-sector collaborations that can put their cities on paths toward shared prosperity. After the experience on campus, each city team will be encouraged to apply what they have learned to benefit their home town. We will keep the young leaders connected to each other, to us, and to past and future cohorts. Over time, our aim is to develop a cadre of young leaders who are able and eager to work across traditional boundaries to help their communities thrive.

Participating cities include:

Birmingham, Boston, Chattanooga, Columbus, Detroit, Miami, Milwaukee, Minneapolis - St. Paul, Nashville, Pittsburgh, Salt Lake City, San Antonio, San Jose

2023 Cohort

Ayrton Bryan
Sustainability Manager, Rockwell Automation

Danielle Rodriguez
Director of Operations, Dept of Public Works, City of Milwaukee

Isaac Rowlett
Director of Strategy, Milwaukee County

Jaclyn Stoczanyn
Adult Education and Facilitator in Higher Education, UW- Milwaukee

Laura Bolger
Director of Resource Development, Greater Milwaukee Committee

Lindsey Dudzinski
Director of Business Development and Strategy, Milwaukee Bucks

Maysee Herr
CEO, Hmong Wisconsin Chamber of Commerce

Raynetta Hill
Executive Director, Historic King Drive BID 8

Shane Arnold
Sr Staff - Enterprise Cloud & Data Platform Architect, GE Healthcare

Dr. Victor Amaya
Executive Director, Data You Can Use

2022 Cohort

David Crowley
County Executive, Milwaukee County

Evan Reed
Senior Director Impact Investment
 Strategy, Northwestern Mutual

David Cohn
Executive Director, First Tee — Southeast Wisconsin

Cheryl Blue
Executive Director, 30th Street Industrial Corridor Corp

Samantha Maldonado
Sr. Manager D&I, Kohl’s

Lauren Feaster
CEO, Professional Dimensions

M. Paula Phillips
Sr. Director- Race and Gender Equity, YWCA Southeast Wisconsin

Lori Richards
CEO, Mueller Communications

Oby Nwabuzor
Director/Founder, American Heart Association/Envision Growth LLC

Francesca Mayca Wegner
Executive Director, Hispanic Professionals of Greater Milwaukee

  • Facebook - Black Circle
  • Twitter - Black Circle
  • Instagram - Black Circle

2020-21 Cohort


Ashley Hines

Medical College of Wisconsin

DJ Hines

Christian Faith Fellowship Church and Plaza

Jasmine Johnson

iHeart Media

Erik Kennedy

Advocate Aurora Health

Lita Mallet

Milwaukee Excellence Charter School

Tarik Moody

88Nine Radio Milwaukee

Emily Phillips


Joe Poeschl

Greater Milwaukee Committee

Raphael Ramos

Legal Action of Wisconsin

Selection Committee:

Maggie Beckley

Maggie Dauss

Michael Hostad

Kira Lafond

Andrea Schneider

Julia Taylor

2019 Cohort

Joaquin Altoro


Irrisol Arce

Northwestern Mutual

Maggie Beckley

Advocate Aurora Health

Maggie Dauss

Greater Milwaukee Committee

Sarah Fierek

88Nine Radio Milwaukee

Ben Fox


Rebecca Lopez

Godfrey & Kahn

Jason Rae

WI LGBT Chamber

Darlene Russell

Greater Milwaukee Foundation

Maurice Thomas

Milwaukee Excellence Charter School


Selection Committee:

Graham Anderson

Erickajoy Daniels

Michael Hostad

Kira Lafond

Julia Taylor

Andrea Schneider

2018 Cohort

Graham Anderson

Milwaukee Tool

Amanda Avalos

Center for Popular Democracy

Kelsey Brenn

St. Augustine Prep

Erickajoy Daniels

Advocate Aurora Health

Nafessa Jackson


Dan Katt

Good City Brewing

Alex Lasry

Milwaukee Bucks

Sam Liechtling

City of Milwaukee

Daniel Riemer

State of WI

Keith Stanley

Near West Side Partners

Selection Committee:

Katherine Gehl

Cory Nettles

Austin Ramirez

Andrea Schneider

Julia Taylor

bottom of page