Next Neighborhood Leaders is a part-time training and networking opportunity for people who seek to learn and collaborate with others to make positive change in their neighborhood. Next Leaders is open to those who work, live, or want to contribute to positive change, in Coro partner communities. See “Communities” pages of our website to learn about Coro’s partner communities.


For the 2016 – 17, Next Neighborhood Leaders program, Coro is recruiting emerging leaders from Stowe Township and McKees Rocks. If you live or work in either community, apply today.


By participating in NEXT Leaders, you will:

  • Get to know others who are passionate about making positive change in your community
  • Meet emerging leaders from your community and work together on a project in your community
  • Participate in leadership training with peers from another community and learn from their experience
  • Explore challenges and opportunities facing your community
  • Receive mentoring and support while taking action to create positive community change
  • Learn to build strong teams by leveraging people’s strengths
  • Hone your skills in group facilitation
  • Develop and execute a plan for your personal development as a leader

We are now recruiting for Next Neighborhood Leaders (Stowe Township and McKees Rocks)


Nomination Deadline: August 22, 2016

Application Deadline: August 29, 2016

Program Starts: September 15, 2016


NEXT Neighborhood Leaders develops the people and the networks that create positive change in Coro’s partner communities (See “communities” pages of this website to learn more about our partner communities).

Leadership development is a journey of action, reflection, and support. It takes time, commitment, and courage. NEXT Neighborhood Leaders is designed to be both demanding and flexible. It is demanding in that it requires a willingness to listen to others, stretch yourself, and change behavior when needed. It is flexible in that one participates in stages, making small commitments at each step of the journey and taking breaks as needed. To begin, you simply need to commit to the first part of the journey.

Sessions for the 2016 -17 year will rotate between Stowe Township, McKees Rocks and the Coro Office.

We invite you to apply if you:

  1. Live, work, or want to make positive change, in one of our partner communities
  2. Want to grow your social network
  3. Have an interest in discovering new ways to collaborate to make positive change
  4. Have a project or idea for positive community change that you would like to pursue.



Part I. Training and Learning Modules (6.5 months)

You will meet regularly with your cohort to learn core skills for mobilizing people to make progress on complex community challenges. You will develop ideas and explore collaborations for a community impact project that you will launch no later than the beginning of part II. And you will create a plan for your own development as a leader.  All sessions take place on Tuesday evenings, 5:30-9:30 (including a meal)

Module 1: Understanding Yourself in Relation to Your Community

September 13 – November 1, 2016

Break:  November 8 & 15, 2016

Module 2: Developing Yourself and Leading in Your Community I

November 22, 2016 – January 17, 2017 (no session on December 27, 2016)

Break:  January 24 & 31, 2017

Module 3: Developing Yourself and Leading in Your Community II

February 7- March 28, 2017


Part II. Leadership Practice Circles (5.5 months)

The formal training and learning sessions end and your cohort launches one or more community impact projects. You continue to meet regularly in project teams. Coro faculty and staff will provide support to your project teams. They may attend project team meetings but will not organize or facilitate them. Faculty will also meet with you one-on-one to support your individual strategic plan. Your project teams have the opportunity to access the Coro alumni network in order to attract volunteers and supporters for your projects. You can also utilize Coro fundraising tools and tap the Coro network to help raise funds for your projects. By completing Part II, you earn a Coro diploma certifying your ability to lead community change.

Dates:  April – Mid September, 2017


Part III. Continuous Learning and Collaboration (ongoing)

Upon graduation, you will continue to drive your projects towards success. While formal meetings with Coro faculty will end, you will continue to have access to the Coro alumni network to support your projects. Coro faculty and staff will be available on an as-needed basis. You will also have the opportunity to build leadership succession in your community by nominating others to participate in future cohorts of Next Leaders.


By participating in NEXT Leaders, you will:

  • Get to know others who are passionate about making positive change in your community
  • Explore challenges and opportunities facing your community
  • Receive mentoring and support while taking action to create positive community change
  • Learn to build strong teams by leveraging people’s strengths
  • Hone your skills in group facilitation

NEXT-alumni-quotes-13-940x340 NEXT-alumni-quotes-14-940x340

The cost of NEXT Leaders is $5,000 for each participant. Because of our fundraising efforts, we are able to offer the program tuition free. Your support is critical to our efforts. To contribute, visit our fundraising site.

The dates below are for the current (2015-16) cohort of Wilkinsburg leaders. All sessions will run from 5:30 – 9:00 pm, with a light meal provided. Check back with us soon for session dates for our next cohort beginning in September 2016 for Stowe Township and McKees Rocks leaders.

Thursday, October 01, 2015
Thursday, October 08, 2015
Thursday, October 15, 2015
Thursday, October 22, 2015
Thursday, October 29, 2015
Thursday, November 05, 2015
Thursday, November 12, 2015
Thursday, November 19, 2015
Thursday, December 03, 2015
Thursday, December 17, 2015
Wednesday, January 07, 2016
Thursday, January 21, 2016
Thursday, February 04, 2016
Thursday, February 18, 2016
Thursday, March 03, 2016
Thursday, March 17, 2016
Thursday, March 31, 2016
Thursday, April 14, 2016
Thursday, April 28, 2016
Thursday, May 12, 2016
Thursday, May 26, 2016
Thursday, June 09, 2016
Thursday, June 23, 2016
Thursday, July 07, 2016
Thursday, July 21, 2016
Thursday, August 04, 2016
Thursday, August 18, 2016
Thursday, September 01, 2016
Thursday, September 15, 2016

Alex Oliver

Alex OliverI moved to Pittsburgh from Canada to pursue my PhD in art history. After completing my degree I decided to stay in Pittsburgh, to continue working with the growing arts community. I do this by writing art criticism and by organizing public events such as the Art+Feminism Wikipedia Edit-a-thon and the Dream City Art tour.



Autumn Butler

Autumn Butler
I currently serve as the executive director of Wilkinsburg Christian Housing, a ministry dedicated to restoring abandoned houses in Wilkinsburg. In addition, I am the administrator of Covenant Fellowship Church, also in Wilkinsburg. I have lived in the Pittsburgh region for over 14 years and am a current resident of Wilkinsburg where I live with my husband and three children. I have a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science and a Master’s degree in Public Administration.


Brazitte Poole
Brazitte Poole
I  am a Pittsburgh native from the Wilkinsburg and Homewood areas.  CORO NEXT Neighborhood Leaders:  Wilkinsburg excites me.  It gives me an opportunity to collaborate with an amazing cohort of people to make an impact on a neighborhood that means so much to me. Leadership is FEARLESS, ATTENTIVE, and INVOLVED.



Cynthia Kenderson
Cynthia Henderson

I am a Visionary/Dreamer with an eye for details and the ability to see and discern the potential and purpose of “The Emergence of Beauty.” I manifest this through my photography and my ability to craft words into poetic sonnets and metaphors. That of which I published my first book entitled, “I AM Cynt” in 2013. My current occupation is Product Marketing Management/Product Commercialization Specialist which is sharpening my skills that I desire to implement in my childhood neighborhood of Wilkinsburg. My Character appears on many stages in life via many industries, but My spotlight is not to illuminate and showcase my greatness but to be a beacon to inspire and guide.

Evan Diamond

Evan Diamond

I’m a relatively new resident of Western Pennsylvania and an even newer resident of Wilkinsburg. I’ve studied music, traveled quite a bit and learned a lot about rural and urban agriculture. Now and since I moved to the area I’ve worked in the produce department at the East End Food Co-op. I am currently the manager of the department.



Frank Tillman

Frank Tillman

I was raised in the Homewood area, and became a resident of Wilkinsburg in 2007. I serviced Wilkinsburg School District six years as a paraprofessional, and four years tutoring in the Afterschool Excellence program at the Boys and Girls Club of Wilkinsburg. Currently I substitute teach with Pittsburgh Public Schools, and the direct two weekend youth programs – Joseph’s Basketball & Bible Camp and Codename SATURDAY (Simply teAching The yoUth moRal Decent vAlues todaY) – at Christian Church of Wilkinsburg. I am dedicated to the education and safety of youth, for they are our future.

Heather Manning
Heather Manning

Born and raised in rural northwestern Pennsylvania, Heather is an educator, social justice advocate, and writer. She is committed to community health and equitable engagement. Her passion for wellness has inspired her to lead countless workshops on creating products that positively impact the body.



Jaleah Robinson
Jalea Robinson

Jaleah is passionate about a handful of things, namely education’s potential to empower our young women and men, food, and sports. She is proud to serve as the assistant principal at the Environmental Charter School and is eager to take on a new role as a board member of the Wilkinsburg Boys & Girls Club. Jaleah earned a B.A. in Writing and a Master’s degree in Secondary Education from the University of Pittsburgh.


Jeffrey Nash

Jeff Nash

Katie Blackburn
Katie Blackburn

I am a current program coordinator for the Jumpstart Pittsburgh program (a national non-profit that trains undergraduate students to mentor low-income preschoolers in language and literacy skills) at the University of Pittsburgh. Although a native of the suburbs of Philadelphia, I truly enjoy Pittsburgh and all that I have learned in the past 6 years living in its various neighborhoods. The people of Pittsburgh are constantly filled with generosity and genuine invitation (from the time I took my first bus trek and couldn’t figure out which stop to use, but a kind bystander pulled the cord for us–to the time I lost my wallet while biking and received an email along with the return of the fully stocked wallet).


Klara Brown

Klara Brown

-Elected Member of the Wilkinsburg School Board of Directors
-Vice President, Wilkinsburg School Board
-School Board Treasurer
-Member Coordinator, Hamnett Place Community Garden



O.E. (Zoe) Zelmanovich
O.E. (Zoe) Zelmanovich

I am a proud fifth generation Pittsburgher and have been a homeowner in Wilkinsburg for the last five years. I’m involved in many groups that agitate on behalf of justice and others that seek to embody alternatives to capitalist business-as-usual including the Big Idea Bookstore Collective, the Bloomcraft building, BULK Pittsburgh, Concerned Members of the East End Food Coop, the Community Land Trust Working Group, CooperatePittsburgh, Fair Development Action Group, Three Rivers Rising Tide, and the Women and Trans* Prisoner Defense Committee.


Suz Mauro

Suz Mauro 





Teisha Stolich

Teisha Stolich




Where and how we are making impact.


Please send a copy of your Resume and Essay Requirements in PDF form to in addition to the above application.


Nominations are not open at this time.

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