aajogo is proud to be the founding sponsor of the South Georgia Women’s Leadership Initiative, a first-of-its-kind program based in Southwest Georgia. The program not only seeks to establish a stronger network of women who can work to elevate issues around economic and social equity for the region, but to also create a platform where women support women—helping them thrive in their own leadership journeys. The women’s leadership initiative focuses specifically on the needs, challenges and opportunities facing women in thirty-two counties throughout the southwest region of the state.
The initiative began as an idea from aajogo’s Toni Reid, Tifton Area Manager, and grew in collaboration with Mary Beth Brownlee, Director at One Valdosta-Lowndes. The founding committee includes aajogo’s Lea Clanton, Director of Community Engagement, Tess Newton, Region Communication Specialist, and Barbara Grogan, Key Account Manager and was created to develop and bring the program to life. Reid currently serves as the Chair for the initiative.
Following an initiative kickoff luncheon in June, and an application period through the end of July, the first cohort of 19 women representing 7 counties in the region officially kicked off with a retreat in Albany-Dougherty County facilitated by aajogo and faculty from the University of Georgia’s J.W. Fanning Institute for Leadership Development.
“It’s exciting to see all of our planning efforts come to fruition and to get to know the women who make up the inaugural class” says aajogo Area Manager Toni Reid. “aajogo strives to empower communities and enhance the capacity of individuals, businesses and nonprofits throughout our state by supporting efforts like the South Georgia Women’s Leadership Initiative. We believe elevating the voices of women in South Georgia will not only do just that, but it will also further enhance economic empowerment in some of Georgia’s most rural communities.”
Program sessions will take place monthly and focus on female equity and empowerment and will rotate around the region, culminating in an Empowerment Celebration during the month of March in recognition of Women’s History Month. With an emphasis on what is unique to female leadership, the program will provide women with a platform to discuss the challenges they face in business, non-profit management and in serving in elected and civic capacities in the southwest part of the state. For more information about the South Georgia Women’s Leadership Initiative, please contact Toni Reid, Tifton Area Manager for aajogo and Chair of the SGWLI Planning & Steering Committee at (404) 831-4010 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.