Neighborhood Leadership Program

Amherst H Wilder Foundation, Community Leadership Programs, Neighborhood Leadership Program
Your grassroots community connection to making a difference!

Wilder's Neighborhood Leadership Program (NLP) invites you to make a difference in your local community! While participating in this 6-month journey of self-discovery, authentic leadership, and meaningful engagement, you'll also connect and collaborate with diverse individuals and uncover the unique cultural history of Saint Paul with the Minnesota Historical Society. 

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About the Neighborhood Leadership Program

The Neighborhood Leadership Program brings together 20 people from a wide diversity of ages, cultural backgrounds and levels of experience from across the community to:

  • Explore opportunities for neighborhood involvement and personal growth
  • Develop skills to work effectively with others
  • Examine and cultivate personal leadership
  • Expand your knowledge of Saint Paul's history, culture and diversity 
  • Highlight leadership models to better engage communities and neighborhoods

Program Length:

6 months (January– June)

Program Format:

The program is launched with an opening retreat to ground participants in community building, program content and leadership goals. Over the course of the program, participants will have the opportunity to work individually and collectively to build skills. Group work may include meet ups twice a month for four months.

As a critical component of the NLP program, we partner with the Minnesota Historical Society to provide technical training and guidance. NLP participants will work in small groups to uncover leadership stories that emerge from St. Paul neighborhoods through community-based research practices culminating in a community exhibit and presentation.

Together we will explore the following topics:

  • Leadership styles
  • Intercultural communication and conflict resolution
  • City and county government and systems
  • Personal values and using community history to inform your current work
  • Restorative healing and trauma-informed approaches to community leadership

Participant Requirements:

People from diverse gender, geography, age, cultural and ethnic backgrounds are encouraged to apply!

  • Age 16+
  • Live, work or volunteer in Saint Paul or the East Metro area
  • Demonstrate interest and/or involvement in contributing to their local neighborhood or community
Clean Water Land & Legacy Amendment and Minnesota Historical Society logos

The Minnesota Historical Society collaborates with us to provide the Neighborhood Leadership Program each year.

Apply to the Neighborhood Leadership Program

Do you want to make a difference in your community? Be part of NLP in 2020 - now accepting applications!

Please complete the online application and be sure to hit "submit" at the end. 

  • Deadline to apply is Monday, December 24, 2019 by 5:00 p.m. 
  • Questions? Contact Coulette Columbus-Powers at nlp@wilder.org or call 651-280-2366.

2020 Neighborhood Leadership Program Schedule & Information

Courageous Stories

Xiomara Bell, graduate of Neighborhood Leadership Program at Wilder

Neighborhood Leadership Program Helps Minnesota Newcomer Xiomara Bell Connect with Diverse Communities

Neighborhood Leadership Program graduate Xiomara Bell was working in mental health care in her native Louisiana when she felt called to use her degrees in history. Last year she applied for, interviewed and accepted a job at the Minnesot...More about this story »

Read the Book on Neighborhood Leadership

Neighborhood Leadership Program Book on Amazon by Dr. Mike Klein and Damon Sholom

Published in 2017 and written by Dr. Mike Klein and Damon Sholom, "Neighborhood Leadership" presents stories of grassroots leadership development and celebrates more than 20 years of the Neighborhood Leadership Program (NLP).

Vivid reflections and practical examples explore themes including: knowing your own story, finding and using voice, alternative visions for leadership, working across difference, and promoting social justice.

Available on Amazon as paperback or on Kindle.

Create a Leadership Program for Your Specific Community

We recognize that there are community-specific or cultural groups that may need or want customized leadership training. Wilder offers flexible programs for those exploring and stepping into community leadership roles.

In the past, we have worked with the Karen Community of Minnesota and the St. Paul Public Housing Agency. Let us know how we can develop a custom community leadership program for your community.

Contact:
Coulette Columbus-Powers 
651-280-2366
nlp@wilder.org

Meet the Neighborhood Leadership Program Team

Coulette Columbus-Powers

Administrative Specialist, Community Leadership Programs

Tenzin Dhakong

AmeriCorps Public Ally, Neighborhood Leadership Program

Marika Pfefferkorn

Program Manager, Neighborhood Leadership Program

Octavia Smith

Senior Program Associate, Neighborhood Leadership Program