The inaugural Jonesboro Neighborhood Leadership class has been selected and will provide members with a behind-the-scenes education into the workings of municipal government.
Mayor Harold Perrin initiated the concept with Director of Community Development Tiffny Calloway in an effort to broaden participation in City of Jonesboro government, including the numerous boards and commissions that serve various purposes.
“We wanted to grow the diversity of our boards and commissions, because Jonesboro has grown more diverse over the years,” Perrin said. “And I think this goes hand in hand with the City Council’s recent resolution to include diversity of race, age, gender and to find people from as many different backgrounds as feasible for city input.”
The first class of 18 was selected from more than 50 applicants, and Calloway said it’s important for those not selected to know they can still participate in future classes.
“We had a great response, and it tells us a lot about how much the people of this city want to get involved,” Calloway said. “With these classes, we hope to create new and more diverse generations of future leaders for Jonesboro.”
The first JNL class is composed of three residents from each of the city’s six wards. Ten of the members are female, and the class comprises a variety of backgrounds, ages and races. The class will meet eight Thursday evenings beginning Sept. 6.
“We’re going to introduce them to every department of the city,” Calloway said. “They will engage departmental directors and council members, and tour city facilities. From these classes, they will learn processes and considerations involved when serving residents.”
Inaugural class members are Jena Williams, Brookshield Laurent and Andy Davis (Ward 1); James Hollywood, Kassie Williams and David McAvoy (Ward 2); Ernesto Saucedo, LaCarla Denny and Chris Moss (Ward 3); Aimee McDonald, Tamara Glover and Belinda Stillwell (Ward 4); Adrian Everett, Daniel Bell and Grant Newkirk (Ward 5); Tami Freeman, Britinni McDuff and Jennifer Tapia (Ward 6).