Equity Leadership Initiative

Equity Leadership Initiative Application Information

Deadline to apply is April 15, 2022.

The Equity Leadership Initiative’s intent is to cultivate, mentor, and seek access for individuals who identify as Asian, Black, Hispanic or Latino, Indigenous, or multiracial, from across sectors to help build a pipeline of leaders of color in positions of influence in Rhode Island.

The program’s goal is to inspire a deeper commitment to social justice and racial equity in Rhode Island by working with existing leaders of color on their leadership journey.

Accepted applicants will participate in a 12-month leadership development effort that will kick-off with a welcome event in August. Monthly half-day meetings will begin for the cohort in September 2022.


The Equity Leadership Initiative will focus on supporting existing leaders of color who identify as Asian, Black, Hispanic or Latino, Indigenous, or multiracial Black, Hispanic or Latino, Indigenous, and Asian and are currently engaged in work in the public, private, or nonprofit sector.

Applicants must have a demonstrated track record and commitment to racial equity and social justice, the ability to participate in monthly leadership and program activities (i.e. coaching and mentoring), and must reside in Rhode Island.

Participants will be accepted into the second cohort of the Equity Leadership Initiative. There is no fee to participate.

Program components

Cohort members in the Equity Leadership Initiative will participate in the following:

  • Monthly half-day group meetings beginning in September 2022, focused on leadership development, self-discovery, and the creation of a learning community;
  • Regular one-to-one coaching sessions;
  • Support to develop a leadership vision and goals;
  • Regular meetings with a matched mentor; and
  • Will make high-level connections across industries through program participation.

ELI will kick off with a welcome event in late August 2022.

Beginning on Tuesday, September 20, 2022, half-day group sessions will be held from 12 to 6 p.m. on the second Tuesday of each month, unless noted otherwise below:

September 20, 2022
October 11, 2022
November 15, 2022
December 13, 2022
January 10, 2023
February 14, 2023
March 13-14, 2023 (overnight retreat; location TBD)
April 11, 2023
May 9, 2023
June 13, 2023
July 11, 2023
August 8, 2023

A graduation event will be held on August 15, 2023.

Application process and deadline

Applications for the Equity Leadership Initiative’s second cohort are due on April 15, 2022.

Leaders will be selected for the initiative via a one stage application process. Applications will be reviewed by the Equity Leadership Steering Committee members and Rhode Island Foundation team members.

Information sessions will be held via zoom for interested individuals; please click the links provided to register.

Monday, March 7, 2022, 5:30-6:30 p.m.

Monday, March 14, 2022, 9:30-10:30 a.m.

Wednesday, March 16, 2022, 6:00-7:00 p.m.

Thursday, March 24, 2022, 12:00-1:00 p.m.

Monday, March 28, 2022, 5:30-6:30 p.m.

Friday, April 1, 2022, 12:00-1:00 p.m.

Monday, April 11, 2022, 12-1:00 p.m.

Applicants will be notified of their status during the first week of June 2022.

To apply

Please submit the following:

  • A completed application. All applications must be submitted through our online system;
  • A resume or curriculum vitae;
  • Two letters of recommendation, either from a place of employment as an endorsement of the application, other professional persons, community partners, or other people who can provide reference for you; and
  • Link to video that is uploaded into Hightail, that is under three minutes in length and responds to one of the narrative questions in the application (additional instructions are included in the application).

Click here to apply.

To complete an application that is already in progress, and to submit, please click here.