Latest News

SCF News: Grassroots Leadership Institute Class of 2022 Announced

The Spartanburg County Foundation is excited to announce that 29 community members have been selected to participate in the 2022 Grassroots Leadership Development Institute. The selection committee, comprised mainly of GLDI Alumni, was thrilled and challenged by the pool of 58 applicants, the largest in the Institute’s history. The class of 2022 includes representatives of grassroots organizations and initiatives, nonprofit organizations, entrepreneurs, small and large businesses, education, healthcare, and faith communities.

Now in its 18th year, the GLDI has graduated 430 individuals now serving the community in various leadership roles. The Institute developed as a part of the Foundation’s Strengthening Voices Initiative which was designed to empower the community to assume individual and collective responsibility for positive social change through capacity building. This seven-month leadership development training equips participants with the knowledge, skills, and resources to be effective in leading change throughout the greater Spartanburg County community and beyond. It has become a nationally recognized best practice model that continues to garner interest from groups throughout the country.

This year, the GLDI curriculum has been reframed to amplify the Spartanburg County Foundation’s vision that all Spartanburg County residents achieve their human potential through continuous improvement in quality of life, educational achievement, and economic mobility and includes a focus on building racial equity across the community.

 “We continue to refine the GLDI curriculum to meet our community’s evolving needs and provide the tools necessary for individuals to lead community change, particularly at the grassroots level.  We are excited for this year’s class and the caliber of leaders that applied,” said Mary L. Thomas, SCF Chief Operating Officer and Executive Director of the Robert Hett Chapman III, Center for Philanthropy.

This initiative of the Foundation, in partnership with the City of Spartanburg, provides training in topics such as community issues, engagement and collaboration; strategic thinking; meeting facilitation; leadership with a racial equity lens; and leveraging funding and community assets. The program’s graduates are working to improve their communities throughout Spartanburg County and beyond.

The opening retreat for participant was held on Friday, April 29th, 2022, followed on Saturday, April 30th, by Dr. Katrina Hutchins, President & CEO of Re-Source Solutions, presenting the topic, “Elevating Yourself to Become a Legacy Leader.” Institute participants continue training sessions held mainly on Saturdays through early fall at the Robert Hett Chapman III Center for Philanthropy and additional locations across the County, culminating with a graduation ceremony in October 2022. Upon graduation, class members are invited to join the Grassroots Leadership Alumni Association to continue their engagement through various leadership development, networking, and board service opportunities.

Meet the GLDI Class of 2022

  • Mekeshia Bates, DNP
  • Rev. Milferd Brock
  • JeMar Brown
  • Shawna Bynum           
  • Laurie Campbell
  • Robert Cheeks
  • Ja’Kari Clayton
  • Tanisha Cook
  • Pastor Allen Dawkins
  • Sheila Eison
  • Carol Ferguson
  • Reggie Geter
  • Tashma Glymph
  • Alysa Handelsman, Ph. D
  • Kat Hanold
  • Angelique Jarvis-Simmons
  • Justin Kelly
  • Tevin Logan
  • Hunter McLeod
  • Titus Miller
  • Elizabeth Morales
  • Katherine Parris
  • Nikki Smith
  • Toni Sutton
  • Angela Tarpley
  • Richard Bernard Wheeler II
  • Ashley Wilburn
  • Tamidra Wilkins
  • Kristen Simone Williams