The 2021 Lead for America Fellowship is now accepting applications.
NOTE: If you apply using the Handshake “Apply” button, we will contact you regarding next steps for the application. To be fully considered for the fellowship, all candidates must complete Lead For America’s external application on AirTable. To begin the fellowship application, follow this link.
Who We Are
A single visionary leader rooted in humility can change a community. Many working together can transform our country.
From the COVID-19 crisis to intergenerational poverty and ecological devastation, the challenges facing our communities and nation are immense. And our communities and public institutions––the very things designed to confront these challenges, give every American a chance at a better life, and care for those who can’t care for themselves––are crumbling exactly when we need them most.
Lead For America’s Fellows program builds the leadership force we need to address these challenges at scale, to change the narrative of success and worth in our country, and to ensure that every child has a chance at a better life, no matter their neighborhood or family circumstances.
The program is a paid, two-year fellowship for dynamic and diverse leaders who return to their hometown communities and home states to work full-time alongside local public institutions implementing proven strategies to improve community wellbeing.
Thriving BIPOC businesses increase employment for BIPOC and create generational wealth for
the communities they support. They are also more likely to reinvest in their communities and
contribute to the overall quality of life. Removing the barriers to success in entrepreneurship will
result in greater economic equity, a more vibrant economy, and quicker recovery from the
downturn caused by the pandemic.
The Entrepreneurship Fellow with be placed in the community organization, Fund 17. Founded in 2012, Fund 17 was created to invest in communities that have been left out of traditional business opportunities. They provide highly accessible business services, capital, education, and
workspace to entrepreneurs in the Greater New Orleans region with under $150,000 in business
revenue to ensure they have the resources and support necessary to become economically
independent, create jobs and shift the income inequity that has affected the community. By prioritizing low-income entrepreneurs of color and native New Orleanians operating informal and community-based businesses, we ensure that our services are directed to the people who make up the backbone of a sustainable, resilient, and thriving economy and community in New Orleans. Fund 17 is a dynamic, resilient, innovative, community-based organization. We are small but mighty and utilize our resources with great efficiency to meet unmet needs. Working at Fund 17 means communicating proactively, holding yourself and your team accountable, and bringing your whole authentic self to work. The Lead For America Fellow will bring a passion for justice and equity, a base of technical or subject matter know-how, and a growth mindset to build our capacity to better execute our mission.
- Design and conduct research projects
- Support entrepreneurs in navigating policy
- Liaise with local government officials
- Develop guides and policy reform proposals
- Advocate for entrepreneurs
- Facilitate collaborations and build coalitions with other organizations
- Supervise interns and others to accomplish the above
First Round Deadline: May 15th
Semifinalist Deadline: May 29th
Finalist Interviews: June 6th-7th
Endorsed Finalist Selection: June 14th
First Round Deadline: June 15th
Finalist Interviews: June 16th-23rd
Endorsed Finalist Selection: July 2nd
-Be a U.S. Citizen, National, or Lawful Permanent Resident.
-If in college, be on track to earn an undergraduate degree by June 2021, and if graduated, have earned an undergraduate degree in 2012 or later (this may include an associate degree).
-Be able to make a full-time commitment (the fellowship is a full-time job).
Learn More & Contact Us
To learn more about the fellowship program or LFA, please see here.
To schedule a call with an LFA Fellow, please see here.
If you do not see an email from LFA after submitting your registration in the LFA application portal, please check your spam folder.