Joe Pinilla of The Forrester Center for Behavioral Health (TFC) joins other leaders selected from across the Upstate and surrounding area to participate in the Riley Institute at Furman’s 26th class of Diversity Leaders Initiative (DLI).
“Discovering ways in which differences can strengthen our organizations is of utmost importance as we seek to grow and support a thriving economy and rich culture,” said Dr. Donald Gordon, Executive Director of the Riley Institute.
DLI class members are identified through a rigorous process including nominations from existing Riley Fellows, application, and interview. Individuals are selected to join the class based on their capacity to impact their organizations and communities.
“It’s an honor to be selected to join the 26th class of DLI. I believe that diversity and inclusion are vital to the continued growth in Spartanburg, and I am excited about the direction we are heading,” said Joe Pinilla, Deputy Director of Prevention & Community Engagement at TFC.
“I am really pleased that Joe has been accepted into this program! He will be a great addition and I’m excited about the knowledge he’ll bring back to our agency,” said Susan O’Brien, Executive Director at TFC.
Over the course of five months, Joe will take part in a highly interactive curriculum consisting of case studies, scenario analyses and other experiential learning tools that maximize interaction and discussion among classmates and facilitate productive relationships. Joe will also work with other class members in one of five Capstone project groups formed to respond to real issues in the community.
The DLI classes are expertly facilitated by Juan Johnson, an independent consultant and former Coca-Cola vice president. “DLI is unique among South Carolina’s leadership programs. In addition to the opportunity to develop new relationships and take part in positive action in their communities, participants gain deep knowledge of how to effectively manage and lead diverse workers, clients and constituents,” said Johnson.
DLI graduates become Riley Fellows, members of a powerful, cross-sector, statewide leadership network that includes CEOs of corporations, mayors, city and county council members, legislators, school superintendents, pastors and rabbis, non-profit heads, chamber of commerce directors, and community leaders. In addition to the Upstate, DLI classes are selected annually in the Midlands and Lowcountry.
“We now have more than 1900 Riley Fellows statewide. Each new class further extends the reach and impact of leaders willing to work together to make South Carolina a better place to live and work for all its residents,” said Gordon.
To see a full list of participants and for more information about the Diversity Leaders Initiative, visit https://riley.furman.edu/diversity.