Linden Neighborhood Conversation

Melanie Crabill
Director of Media Relations
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Kevin Kilbane
Director of Communications
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Media Advisory
News Date: March 08, 2023

Department of Neighborhoods New American Leadership Academy Kicks off Class of 2023

The City of Columbus Department of Neighborhoods welcomes 21 diverse leaders from 15 different countries in its 2023 New American Leadership Academy (NALA) cohort beginning March 8.

The New American Leadership Academy (NALA) is a leadership and professional development program focused on civic engagement for new American residents. Participants receive mentorship, professional development, and learn about topics such as government, civic responsibility, and implicit bias through lectures and presentations and engagement with community and government leaders. 

The 2023 NALA participants were selected based on their demonstrated readiness to grow and enhance their knowledge of civic engagement, community stewardship, leadership, and discover new ways to contribute to Columbus’ growing community. 

“As the 14th largest city in the United States, Columbus is home to more than 160,000 residents who were born in other nations, and we are proud to be a welcoming city for all,” said Mayor Andrew J. Ginther. “It is our growing population of new Americans that fuels the growth and strength of our City, and NALA helps to ensure that all of our residents have a voice, the opportunity to be engaged, and everyone can contribute to our shared success.”

The New American Leadership Academy is the signature program of the New American Initiative within the Department of Neighborhoods. “It is critical that our new American leaders are empowered and engaged,” stated Carla Williams-Scott, Director of the Department of Neighborhoods. “With more than 100 graduates of the program since it was launched in 2018, we are building a strong network of individuals who are advocating for their communities on Area Commissions, civic associations, and other community organizations.”

For more information about the New American Leadership Academy, visit You can also follow the New American Leadership Academy on social media at