Meet the Fall 2022 Class of Emerging Leaders

Becky RasmussenNews

FOCUS St. Louis has selected 27 talented early-career professionals for the Fall 2022 cohort of Emerging Leaders. This civic leadership program provides participants with an increased sense of engagement in the region, as well as the tools to take an active role as the next generation of St. Louis regional leaders.

Since its launch in 2012, FOCUS Emerging Leaders has trained more than 600 young professionals from across the public, private and nonprofit sectors.

“Emerging Leaders is the perfect opportunity for any early-career professional who wants to take on a greater leadership role in our region,” says FOCUS President & CEO Dr. Yemi Akande-Bartsch. “Participants leave the program with a better understanding of themselves and our community and a clearer vision for their future.”

During the four-month program, participants meet with area leaders to gain a better understanding of the inner workings of St. Louis, explore their personal, professional and civic leadership styles and gain a diverse network of peers. Upon graduation, participants become part of the FOCUS network of more than 10,000 leadership program alumni.

The Emerging Leaders program is presented with support from Big League Impact, Dierbergs, The Kwame Foundation, PepsiCo Foundation, and Reinsurance Group of America, Inc.

Fall 2022 Emerging Leaders Class

Dr. Leigh R. Anderson
Professor of Criminal Justice Studies
Southern Illinois University Edwardsville

Sophie Arp
Executive Director
Friends of the Rainforest

Nathan Bestor
Designed Field Research Scientist
Climate, LLC

Arissa M. Calvert, MSW
Certified Financial Social Worker
LifeWise STL

Alexis Creamer
Persistence Coach
Wyman Center

Geoffrey Dudley II
Community Advocate
New Life

Andrea Flanigan
Development Manager
The ALS Association

Sarah Freymiller
Senior Learner Engagement Manager

Mary Gay
American Connection Corps Broadband Fellow
Leadership Council Southwestern Illinois

Keshia Hair
Coordinator of Early Childhood Partnerships
Saint Louis MHB

Umi Khenissi
Manager – Section 3
Employment Connection

Nick Kimble
Healthcare Consultant
Huron Consulting Group

Morgan LeBaige
Database Administrator

Claire Lucas
Business Acceptance Counsel
Armstrong Teasdale LLP

Matthew Mercer
Senior Contract Negotiator
Home State Health Plan

Lance Moore
Vice President

Jovany Otero
Outreach Coordinator
Great Rivers Greenway

Geno Pirrami
Senior Analyst
Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis

Jonathan Plump
Audit Supervisor
Midwest BankCentre

Courtney Price
Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis

Chase Shiflet
Justice Initiative Program Manager
St. Louis Integrated Health Network

Chloe Smith
Grants and Programs Manager
Regional Arts Commission of St. Louis

Renelle Spinks
Career & College Persistence Manager
KIPP St. Louis

Paula-Breonne Vickers
Senior Manager of Community Outreach
Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri

Kristin Watt
Programs Manager
Conflict Resolution Center St. Louis

James White
Associate, Business Leadership

Morgan Williams
DE&I Program Manager