Annie Mattea

Forward 48 Seeks Applicants For Fall 2021

Applications due September 25. Leadership program promotes diversity, helps graduates make connections.

By - Sep 21st, 2021 12:43 pm
A view of downtown Milwaukee from the lakefront. Photo by Dave Reid.

A view of downtown Milwaukee from the lakefront. Photo by Dave Reid.

Forward 48, a leadership development program, is accepting applications for its Fall 2021 cohort.

The program intends to build robust and diverse leadership strategies and has seen significant results from its previous two cohorts. 

This fall, the 48 selected leaders will learn from legacy faculty, including Ted Kellner, Barry Alvarez, Thelma Sias and several more. 

The six-week program will focus on live instruction, curated networking and skill development. The program will also include a specific effort to foster skills regarding diverse and inclusive leadership. 

“This is the leadership program I wish had existed when I was 30,” said Michael Hostad of the Greater Milwaukee Committee and Light the Hoan. “Since the program’s inception last year we’ve had several wins that came as a result of connections through the group. Alumni have joined civic boards, been honored with prestigious awards, elevated for promotions, joined the citywide task forces, and even found capital for major initiatives.” 

Applications are due Sept. 25. Interested participants or those who want to nominate a participant can apply at Forward 48’s website. 

Following completion of the program, alumni are given complimentary access to several education and community opportunities. Participants are able to get graduate level tuition credits at Marquette University, a complimentary six-month membership to the University Club of Milwaukee and a complimentary six-month membership to Rotary Club of Milwaukee. There will also be exclusive opportunities for alumni to foster growth and networks. 

Several past participants expressed excitement about the program.

“Forward 48 quickly introduced me to my peers and those relationships led me to the Milwaukee Economic Development Corporation where we secured a loan to advance our project and mission,” Damian Buchman, founder of The Ability Center who was involved with Forward 48, said. 

Kristina Bell, diversity & inclusion program manager at Bullhorn, was invited by the GMC to join Milwaukee’s COVID-19 Task Force through her participation in Forward 48. “This task force has provided me the opportunity to stay informed with local vaccination facts and progress, and has allowed me the privilege to provide valuable perspective and input on the viewpoints of underrepresented groups in the Milwaukee area,” Bell said. 

Ian Abston, Forward 48 co-founder, hopes to connect participants with opportunities right here in Milwaukee. 

“The future mayor of Milwaukee, the next CEO of your company, the next president of the United Way will come through this group” Abston said. “Our goal is to connect them through Forward 48 and surround them with like-minded civic leaders so they have access to the right networks and knowledge.”

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