Next Neighborhood Leaders is a 12-month, 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)


Open House Session 1:
Thursday, November 17th, 2016. 5:30-9:30PM
Parkway Theatre (644 Broadway Ave. McKees Rocks, PA 15136)

Open House Session 2:
Saturday, November 19th, 2016. 9:00-4:00PM
McKees Rocks Municipal Building (340 Bell Ave. McKees Rocks, PA 15136)

Application Deadline: December 1st, 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 community impact projects 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. Sessions will take place on Thursday evenings (5:30pm – 9:30pm) and Saturdays (9:00am – 4:00pm); please see the schedule below. A meal is provided at each session.

Thursday, November 17, 2016 5:30pm-9:30pm

Saturday, November 19, 2016 9:00am-4:00pm

Thursday, December 1, 2016 5:30pm-9:30pm

Saturday, December 17, 2016 9:00am-4:00pm

Thursday, January 5, 2017 5:30pm-9:30pm

Saturday, January 21, 2017 9:00am-4:00pm

Thursday, February 2, 2017 5:30pm-9:30pm

Saturday, February 18, 2017 9:00am-4:00pm

Thursday, March 2, 2017 5:30pm-9:30pm

Saturday, March 18, 2017 9:00am-4:00pm

Thursday, March 30, 2017 5:30pm-9:30pm

Saturday, April 15, 2017 9:00am-4:00pm

Thursday, April 27, 2017 5:30pm-9:30pm

Saturday, May 13, 2017 9:00am-4:00pm

Thursday, May 25, 2017 5:30pm-9:30pm

Saturday, June 10, 2017 9:00am-4:00pm

Program Commitment: Because our training is experiential, interactive, and group-based, our strong preference is that every participant attends every session. Special circumstances may cause you to miss a session. Special circumstances may cause you to miss a session, so we allow up to two absences (Thursday evenings count for half an absence) with the following exceptions. We require that all participants attend the first two sessions (Nov 17th & 19th, 2016) and the final session (June 10th, 2017).

Part II. Leadership Practice Circles (5.5 months)

The formal training and learning sessions end and you launch community impact projects. Each of you will choose to do either a group or individual project. Those who choose the group project will work with other members of the cohort and continue to meet on a regular basis. Coro faculty and staff will provide support to your project teams. They may attend project team meetings but will not organize or facilitate them. Those choosing individual projects will send Coro faculty two updates on your projects (in June and August) and make a presentation after 6 months (October). Faculty will also meet with all participants one-on-one to support your individual strategic plan. All participants also have the opportunity to access the Coro alumni network in order to attract volunteers and supporters for your projects. By completing Part II, you earn a Coro diploma certifying your ability to lead community change.

Dates:  Mid May 2017 – Mid October, 2017.

Project Presentations and Graduation: Thursday, October 19, 2017 – 5:30pm – 9pm

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

Katie BlackburnKatie Blackburn
Katie is a program coordinator for Jumpstart Pittsburgh, a national nonprofit that trains undergraduates to mentor low-income preschoolers in language and literacy skills. Although a native of Philadelphia, she has come to truly enjoy Pittsburgh. Katie is excited to emerge from the program a confident and versed leader to elicit positive change in all future endeavors, whether for the city or in my field of early education.

Klara BrownKlara Brown
A resident of Wilkinsburg since 2005, Klara began her term as a member of the Wilkinsburg School District Board of Directors in December 2013, where she currently serves as Vice President and Treasurer. Klara also works as an Office Manager of a local Home Health Agency and serves as a board member of Hamnett Place Community Garden. In addition to leadership development, Next Neighborhood Leaders gives her the tools that I need to better understand herself: “This program has enabled me to confront my worst enemy…me!”

Autumn ButlerAutumn Butler
A Current resident of Wilkinsburg, Autumn serves as the executive director of Wilkinsburg Christian Housing, a ministry dedicated to restoring abandoned houses in Wilkinsburg. In addition, she is the administrator of Covenant Fellowship Church in Wilkinsburg. Autumn is excited to be a part of the Coro program as it seeks to bring community leaders together to discuss important community issues, and enjoys getting to know the other NEXT leaders and getting different perspectives on leadership and community development.

Evan DiamondEvan Diamond
Evan is a relatively new resident of Wilkinsburg, has studied music, traveled quite a bit and learned a lot about rural and urban agriculture. He currently serves as the manager of the produce department at the East End Food Co-op. About Coro: “the program creates a constellation of people that would not naturally form, which breaks barriers and creates and combines the energy of a better represented community. This is critical for communities like mine where legacies exist and apathy persists.”

Cynthia HendersonCynthia Kenderson
Cynthia is a Visionary/Dreamer with an eye for details… she manifests this through her photography and her ability to craft words into poetic sonnets and metaphors. About Coro: “the program is exciting to me because I get the opportunity to meet other leaders living and working in Wilkinsburg who are already doing great things for their communities. I look forward to collaborating with (them) on various projects in addition to using my current position to sharpen the skills that I desire to implement in my childhood neighborhood of Wilkinsburg.”

Jeff NashJeffrey Nash
Jeffrey is passionate about youth development and have served as program manager for YouthWorks for over 9 years. An alumnus of Coro’s Community Problem Solving Fellowship, he is excited about participating in this second Coro program. Jeffrey’s future goals include plans to obtain both a Master’s degree in Social Work and a Law degree.

Alex OliverAlexandra Oliver
Alexandra moved to Pittsburgh from Canada to pursue a PhD in art history. After completing her degree, she decided to stay in Pittsburgh to continue working with the growing arts community. To Alex, Next Neighborhood Leaders represents an outstanding opportunity to connect with a diversity of neighborhood leaders who are committed to making Wilkinsburg a stronger community, and finds that it is also a great opportunity – and challenge – for personal and professional development.

Brazitte PooleBrazitte Poole
A Pittsburgh native from Wilkinsburg and Homewood, Brazitte graduated from Coro’s Women in Leadership in 2014. Joining Next Leaders “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.”

Jalea RobinsonJaleah Robinson
Jaleah is passionate about education’s potential to empower our young women and men, 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 is excited about Next “because I get to engage with my community in a new and meaningful way. It is easy to get stuck in the land of what’s not going right, but real change can happen when we make the choice to work together to provide a purpose driven solution.”

Latrice Rose
A Wilkinsburg High School Alumni and resident, Latrice felt it was imperative that she join NEXT Neighborhood Leaders and make a positive impact on Wilkinsburg. A photographer who was looking to introduce an arts program to the Wilkinsburg schools, her focus is now developing a healing art nonprofit. Latrice recently accepted a position as a youth program coordinator working in the Hilltop neighborhoods. Through NEXT, Latrice identified her strengths as a transparent, strong, and passionate leader, and looks forward to continuing to provide resources to residents and create inclusive and impactful change in Wilkinsburg.

Teisha StolichTeisha Stolich
Teisha is a native of Pittsburgh and have been a Wilkinsburg resident for several years. Prior to becoming Director of Recruitment for Coro Pittsburgh, she served as a Code Enforcement Officer for the Borough of Wilkinsburg, ensuring the health, safety, and well-being of all residents. She is a passionate, adaptive leader that enjoys helping others and is excited to expand her skills and development through Next Neighborhood Leaders.

Frank TillmanFrank Tillman
Raised in Homewood and a resident of Wilkinsburg since 2007, Frank served Wilkinsburg School District for six years as a paraprofessional and four years tutoring in the afterschool program. Currently, he teaches in Pittsburgh Public Schools and directs two weekend youth programs. “I am dedicated to the education and safety of youth. It has been an honor to participate in the Coro program where I have learned valuable key aspects to leadership, and how to be more effective in my leadership role and service to my community.”

O.E. (Zoe) ZelmanovichO.E. (Zoe) Zelmanovich
Zoe is a proud fifth generation Pittsburgher and has been a homeowner in Wilkinsburg for five years. “I am excited to participate in the Coro program because I love Wilkinsburg and believe that it is well-suited, as a typical inner city rustbelt neighborhood and a tiny independent municipality, to be a locus of experimentation and forward thinking policy-making that can create genuinely equitable development and build a diverse community that truly allows all of its residents to thrive.”


Jamillia-Kamara-200x300Jamillia Kamara is a data driven educator, social entrepreneur, and grassroots organizer in the nonprofit field. She brings years of experience building cross sector partnerships and common agendas to move diverse community groups towards their identified goals.

At Coro Pittsburgh, Jamillia supervised several project teams as they formed partnerships and implemented service projects with community based organizations in the Greater Pittsburgh Area through the Public Allies program.

She also developed and delivered extensive training on project planning, community engagement, and strengthening team dynamics. Through her role as a Program Manager for Public Allies, Jamillia supervised more than 60 participants over two program years placed at many of the organizations in the Greater Pittsburgh Area, and has built strong relationships with key administrators at those organizations.

As the founder and Executive Director of Internationally Smart Is Cool, Jamillia regularly creates strategies for engaging new partners, solicits feedback from stakeholders, and utilizes cutting edge research to determine the program design, delivery, and evaluation.

Internationally Smart Is Cool is a 501(c)3 educational nonprofit that connects Black and Brown middle school students with opportunities to develop and practice activities that interest them. Under Jamillia’s leadership, the organization partners with the Sister Thea Bowman Catholic Academy in Wilkinsburg, where students engage in programming aligned with the principles of Connected Learning. She also helped lead the strategic planning efforts for Internationally Smart is Cool, where her role was to synthesize the intended outcomes of the organization with key stakeholders in its partner community of Wilkinsburg.

Jamillia has organized a series of community engagement programs through Internationally Smart Is Cool. The #2MillPencils Drive is an effort to collect two million pencils for students attending school in Wilkinsburg over the next five years. A second program, Smart Impact, is a 6-month service learning program for 7th grade students at the Sister Thea Bowman Catholic Academy. Jamillia wrote the curriculum, facilitated the weekly workshops, and helped students design a project for Earth Day. Finally, the Smart Summit is an annual career day of Common Core Standard-saligned workshops for middle school students. Jamillia led partnership development efforts with the Union Project, Urban Innovation21, Sister Thea Bowman, and area young professionals to plan and implement the event for the last two years.

Jamillia earned her Master’s in Education from Chestnut Hill College and her Bachelor’s in Urban Studies from the University of Pittsburgh. Her strengths center on her ability to fuse divergent perspectives, clarify interests, and design a way forward. She is committed to reducing sectorial silos and developing practical solutions to systemic challenges.



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


Where and how we are making impact.


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


Nominate someone to NEXT Neighborhood Leaders today!

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