IMPACT Participates in Transatlantic Inclusion Leadership Conference

IMPACT Participates in Transatlantic Inclusion Leadership Conference


Young Professionals Discuss Ways to Engage in Global Leadership Opportunities

This past week, IMPACT sponsored and led a delegation of young elected officials and leaders to Brussels, Belgium for the Transatlantic Inclusion Leaders Network (TILN) conference and Brussels Forum. In total, 25 young, minority political leaders from the United States and 15 European countries convened March 14-15 2013 in advance of the Brussels Forum for political skills training and to build the TILN, a pillar of the German Marshall Fund’s Leadership, Diversity, and Inclusion Initiative.  Later, the young leaders participated in the Young Professionals Summit of Brussels Forum and visited with parliamentarians as well as the diversity and inclusion experts at the European Parliament.

“In a world that is becoming more multi-ethnic and inclusive, it was essential for IMPACT to support and participate in this transatlantic dialogue,” said IMPACT Director David Johns. “Young people need a voice at the table and in order to successfully develop the next generation of leaders, we must promote the exchange of diversity and cultural competency best practices across the globe.”

Specifically, conference participants delved into current issues relevant to cyber security, political organizing, xenophobia and political ethics, the role of youth in shaping the future of Transatlantic relations, and much more.

“This was an incredible opportunity to share IMPACT’s minority advocacy experiences with our counterparts overseas,” added Nina Smith, IMPACT’s Deputy Director. “For the first time since the beginning of the Brussels Forum, young minority professionals had the chance to literally speak truth to power and be present during some of the most important policy conversations shaping our collective future for years to come.”

IMPACT’s delegation included: IMPACT Director David Johns, IMPACT Deputy Director Nina Smith, Arizona State Representative Ruben Gallego, South Carolina State Representative Bakari Sellers, Detroit, Michigan’s Mayor David Bing’s Legislative Liaison Adam Hollier, and President of the California Latino School Boards Association Xilonin Cruz-Gonazalez.

Partners in building TILN included: IMPACT, the German Marshall Fund, the U.S. Department of State, the U.S. Helsinki Commission, Open Society Foundations, and the Balkan Trust for Democracy.

IMPACT (@teamIMPACT) is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to engage and build a network of young professionals of color to foster civic engagement, increase knowledge of the political and legislative processes, and enhance economic empowerment opportunities. For additional information about IMPACT, visit