Summer 2017 

In many ways Cohort X came to us like their nine predecessors, and in some ways
they were totally different. They seemed to bond quicker...met more
outside their NLDP sessions and when challenged with a task or exercise
they just seemed to rely on each other more and they provided us great
feedback on their sessions. Many of their ideas will be incorporated into
Cohort XI.
Yes...the participants of NLDP Cohort X were a unique lot who will add to
the community building fabric of Cleveland's Neighborhoods and its inner
ring suburbs. Congratulations NLDP Cohort X on your completion of the
program. We at NLDP wish you much success and welcome you to the Graduate Network!

Graduate Collaboration Spotlight:

Alex Robertson

Alex Robertson, a graduate of Cohort IX, is originally from Cleveland, and had been away for many years "running the rat race" in New York City until he got laid up with an injury in his hometown upon a visit back home.  While in NYC he hadn't had a lot of community engagement, but while he was recovering at his mom's everything changed when he got a knock at the door.

It was an organizer from a local CDC, asking if he'd be a mentor for a youth landscaping program.  At first it was just a little paying job he could do while he was in town healing, but then it became "a total 180."  Getting to talk to people in his neighborhood who grew up in houses he remembered as a youth struck Alex and motivated him to make a greater difference, particularly in the lives of youth, to expand their sense of the options they have available for the future.

"Knowing that there's a lot more that I can do, and there's a bunch of people who have that mindset and have a big heart doing that work, too.  That I'm not alone in this work," is what Alex says keeps him engaged and passionate in community building work.  

Alex has since founded Recess Cleveland, a pop-up soccer, dodgeball and recreation program that is currently leading a 50 Days of Recreation initiative.  Recess Cleveland events are intergenerational and inclusive, not to mention a ton of fun!

Alex can also be found regularly at Neighborhood Connection's Neighbor Up and Community of Practice gatherings, as he feels a responsibility to sharing his experience and connection with the community.

Alex's advice for those just getting involved?  "Start small.  Find something that works.  Bring in more people, and resources when you find something that works."  And perhaps most importantly, Alex advises to "finish one thing before you start something else."  

Thanks Alex for all your hard work in the community!  Connect with him and Recess Cleveland, as they will be at every Wade Oval Wednesday and follow them on Facebook.



Cohort XI Application Period Closed
August 1st

Cohort XI Launch 
Thursday, August 24 th

Graduate Capacity Building Session:
The Foundations of Human Capital Development
Saturday, October 28th


Graduate Exchange 

Feb 28, 2018 @ Dunham Tavern



Special Congratulations to...

Tanya Holmes  for being awarded the Pamela L. Redden Humanitarian Award from Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc.

Mordecai Cargill named 2017/2018 PLACES (Professionals Learning About Community, Equity and Smart Growth) Fellow by the Funders Network for Smart Growth and Livable Communities.

Keisha Gonzalez f or her promotion to Managing Director at Metro West Community Development Organization.

Diana Sette fo r her new position as Arborist Educator with Holden Forests & Gardens.

Angela Williams
for her new position as a Retail Sales & Service Associate at PNC Bank. 

Jean-Marie Redrick for her new position as a Case Manager at Connections of Cleveland.

Najah Muhammad, MPA  for her new position as Moms First Community Health Liasion position at Lexington Bell Community Center.

Jeremy Langham for winning the SEA Change Accelerator $15,000 Pitch Contest.

Stephanie Pope & Kyle Earley for their recent marriage! 

NLDP Fleece Jackets for Sale!

By popular demand, NLDP is offering its exclusive NLDP Fleece Jackets with embroidered NLDP logo at cost.  $33.63 per jacket includes exact cost of fleece and shipping to your residence.  Contact Sandra Kluk if you are interested at

Coach Alan Seifullah proudly wearing his.


Neighborhood Leadership Development Program works with these important community organizations to help improve the neighborhoods of Cleveland.






Called your coach lately?
Not sure who your coach is 
or how to connect?  
Looking to connect with someone new?

All strong leaders have support...
Get the support you deserve and need!

Contact Yuolanda now at 216-776-6167 or
to get connected with a coach.  

All Graduates receive two coaching sessions a year at no cost.


On May 1st the Neighborhood Leadership Development Program began its  recruitment period for Cohort XI. Cohort XI will be comprised of 20 - 22  participants from both Cleveland and its inner ring suburbs. 

NLDP now has  186 graduates . With the 2018 graduation of Cohort XI the  program will have over 200 graduates residing in every neighborhood in  Cleveland.

If you or someone you know is an engaged passionate  community leader and wishes to improve their leadership skills to make  more positive and sustainable neighborhood change click here 
to find out how you can make a connection for community change!

Applications due by 5 pm on Friday, August 4th.
APPLY NOW!  Click Here.

Want to know more about what happens for those who are selected for NLDP?  

Check out our latest video, 
"A Year In The Life of an NLDP Participant"...


Ten years ago, the Neighborhood Leadership Development Program  started with eleven  participants and six sessions. Now ten years and 186  graduates later, it is  again expanding to meet the needs of our participants  and graduates.  The  program is adding a sixteenth session entitled "The  Foundations of Human Capital Development: Volunteerism, Self Care and Quality Board Participation."
This new session is almost entirely Graduate driven. For several years  we've noted on our graduate exit interviews a desire for obtaining tools and  a broader understanding of what Graduates can do to maintain and  improve their personal well - being so that they might be more successful  leaders. At the same time we're seeing significant growth in the number of  non - profit boards our graduates and participants now sit on. NLDP  Graduates now sit on over 35 non-profit boards in the City of Cleveland with one fifth of those boards being Community Development Corporations.  In order to help our graduates and participants be the  best board members they can be, our new session will include a section on  how to achieve quality board participation.  Last but not least, there will  also be a new training module on volunteer recruitment and management. A  major aspect of a community project's success or failure is due to whether  or not leaders can not only successfully recruit volunteers but how successfully they assure that their  volunteers are being engaged properly and not burned  out in the name of progress.
The Foundations of Human Capital Development will first be offered as a Graduate C apacity Building Session to be held on Saturday October 28th from 8am to 4pm at Trinity Commons.  T hen it will formally  become Session 14 for NLDP Cohort XI.   We look forward to this new session with great expectations.


Graduates Can Cook Too!

NLDP Graduates are busy, and it is a true testament to their abilities when they are able to cook a good meal in addition to everything else they accomplish!   This issue we include a recipe from NLDP Graduate:

Xavier Allen




1 bunch of kale
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon seasoned salt

  1. Preheat an oven to 350 degrees F. Line a non-insulated cookie sheet with parchment paper.
2.   With a knife or kitchen shears carefully remove the leaves from the thick stems and tear into bite size pieces. Wash and thoroughly dry kale with a salad spinner. Drizzle kale with olive oil and sprinkle with seasoning salt.

3.   Bake until the edges brown but are not burnt, 10 to 15 minutes.

Yum!  ENJOY!

Words From One Of 
Our Community Collaborators....

Kids' Book Bank

Your organization can give the gift of literacy to the children and families you serve with free books from the Kids' Book Bank.

The two most important predictors of academic success are being read to as a child and having books in the home. Sadly, two out of three low-income families do not own a single children's book. The Kids' Book Bank (KBB) is changing that. In its first 14 months, the group distributed 560,960 high-quality books to disadvantaged families in Greater Cleveland! Books are distributed through 431 partner organizations that encourage parents to read with their children and inspire children to read. Children are receiving books from tutors, coaches, pediatricians, afterschool programs, schools, food pantries, churches - and 90+ Little Free Libraries.  Any organization serving children/ families in need can request books for their clients - free!

KBB is an outgrowth of Cleveland Little Free Library. In late 2015 KBB co-founders Judy Payne and Judi Kovach partnered with an online bookseller that was sending 100,000+ high-quality children's books to recycling every month. In February 2016, they opened the Kids' Book Bank in Midtown to bring these books to Cleveland. Volunteers sort and box books six days a week for distribution to partner organizations.

To request books, volunteer or simply learn more, visit


Check out the most up-to-date Graduate Directory
including the newest Cohort X members!

Access the NLDP Graduate Network Directory  here.

 Click here to access the  NLDP GRADUATE ONLY Network Group.


Want to contribute to the 
next edition of The Change Agent?

Contact Yuolanda Murray, Program Associate, at  for more info.
Is a Program of The Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Foundation.