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Multicultural Leadership Academy - 2019 Cohort


Applications must be completed by Thursay November 8th, 2018 at 11:59 p.m. CST. Apply here now!

The Latino Policy Forum is pleased to announce the call for applications for the 2019 Multicultural Leadership Academy!

Now in its third year, the Multicultural Leadership Academy continues to engage, and train Illinois change agents committed to strengthening communities. Since 2009, the Latino Policy Forum has trained close to 200 leaders and emerging stars from more than 85 organizations through the Illinois Latino Nonprofit Leadership and Multicultural Leadership academies.

The Multicultural Leadership Academy will provide a series of leadership workshops to community, policy, arts, and culture leaders sponsored by organizations committed to social change, policy impact, and/or community improvement that serve communities of color throughout Illinois. Applicants may be employees, board members or volunteers at their sponsoring organization.

The Forum is committed to creating a diverse network of ESTABLISHED and EMERGING Latinx and African American leaders who are actively involved in social change, policy impact and/or community improvement. The training curriculum will primarily focus on the perspectives of Latinos and African-Americans. Given Chicago’s historic segregation, alliance building across communities requires a deliberate and intentional approach. The Multicultural Leadership Academy will result in strengthened leadership for community impact, increased cross-cultural understanding, bolstered community collaboration to address pressing social issues, and a network of diverse leaders who will be able to call upon each other in the future.

A distinguishing factor of the Multicultural Leadership Academy is that we acknowledge the significant leadership attributes inherent in our cultural DNA. We will utilize various modalities, including cultural anthropology, arts, and the creation of sacred space to acknowledge, cultivate and inspire social, policy, and/or community change. We will draw on the traditions of a diverse range of cultures to promote transformative leadership and contribute to a network of community leaders that serve Latinx and African-American communities.


“A component that facilitated my growth as a transformational leader is the permeation

of the foundational ideas throughout the training that unite us as a one community. 

The sharing of the other leaders' ideas and passion for their specific community and work reflected the same passion I have for my own community.  It caused me to expand my definition of "my community."

2016-2017 participant

About the Multicultural Leadership Academy

The Academy’s core learning competencies for participants and their organizations include:

(1)   Transformational Leadership: Transformational leaders contribute to change that uplifts others, creates motivating workplaces, communicates an inspiring vision and establishes a compelling moral and ethical framework.

(2)   Intercultural Understanding: Foster an understanding of Illinois’ Latinx and African American communities and identify their common interests.

(3)   Social Change/Policy Action/Community Improvement: Participants will collaborate with their cohort via ‘affinity groups’ on how to create a better, more equitable Illinois through social change, policy action and community improvement.

(4)   Arts Expression: Participants will utilize the arts as a catalyst for individual and group creativity and innovation.

The Academy will:


Participants will be selected regardless of their ability to contribute to the financial cost of the program. The Latino Policy Forum subsidizes 70% of tuition. A contribution of $2,500 per individual is requested. Scholarships are available to cover the individual contribution based on the need of the applicant/organization.


The Academy will begin in January 2019 and run through August 2019. In addition to training, participants commit to meet regularly with their “affinity groups” to create, share and implement a collaboratively-developed action plan. Training dates are as follows:

Retreat Dates:

Workshop Dates (1/2 day):

Affinity Group Work:

Application Requirements/Attachments

Eligibility and Requirements

     Retreat Dates:

     Workshop Dates (1/2 day):

technical assistance.

collaboratively-developed action plan.

* Please review the full application for additional materials and attachments required.

“I am more aware of how much I matter, not in an ego centered way, but as a person of

passion and that it impacts people in ways that may not be comfortable, but is appreciated

 if they are also interested in growth.”   – 2016-2017 participant

Application Checklist


Application can be found at Multicultural Leadership Academy

Interviews for select applicants will be conducted November 1 – November 15, 2018

Selected applicants will receive written notification by November 20, 2018

If you have any questions, please contact:

NiCole Ward

Project Coordinator


312.376.1766 x230

“My participation in the Multicultural Leadership Academy has enhanced my life.  I have developed life-long relationships with like-minded people with diverse backgrounds.    I encourage everyone to push themselves outside of their comfort zones and extend their inner circle.”

2017-2018 participant