Employment and Jobs

Announcing the Job Quality Fellowship Class of 2017-18

September 7, 2017  • Economic Opportunities Program

“Now is the time to focus on making better quality jobs,” said Maureen Conway, vice president for policy programs and executive director of the Economic Opportunities Program at the Aspen Institute. “That’s why we’re launching the Job Quality Fellowship. It is our direct engagement with an impressive range of innovators already leading the way toward expanded opportunity and improved job quality.”

“Now is the time to focus on making better quality jobs.”

With support from The Prudential Foundation and Ford Foundation, the Job Quality Fellowship aims to support and strengthen the work of leaders dedicated to expanding access to and availability of better quality jobs in our economy. In June, EOP released the call for applications and received hundreds of responses. Today, we are proud to announce the sixteen inaugural Job Quality Fellows. Over the next year, this group of thought and action leaders will work together on these crucial issues. The 2017-18 Job Quality Fellows are:

  • Emylene Aspilla, Director, Social Responsibility & Community Sustainability, San Francisco International Airport, San Francisco, CA
  • Betsy Biemann, CEO, Coastal Enterprises Inc, Brunswick, ME
  • Laphonza Butler, President, SEIU 2015, Los Angeles, CA
  • Amanda Cage, Chief Program Officer, Chicago-Cook County Workforce Partnership, Chicago, IL
  • Mary Jo Cook, President & CEO, Pacific Community Ventures, San Francisco, CA
  • Jose Corona, Director, Equity & Strategic Partnerships, Office of the Mayor, Oakland, CA
  • Christine Curella, Director, Business Initiatives & Job Quality, Mayor’s Office of Workforce Development, New York, NY
  • Jess Kutch, Co-Founder and Co-Executive Director, Coworker.org, Washington, DC
  • J.D. LaRock, President & CEO, Commonwealth Corporation, Boston, MA
  • Sean Daniel Murphy, CEO, ICA Fund Good Jobs, Oakland, CA
  • Jenny Riggenbach, Workforce Director, Incourage, Wisconsin Rapids, WI
  • Liddy Romero, Managing Director, WorkLab Innovation, Denver, CO
  • Anjali Sakaria, Senior Community Development Analyst, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, Boston, MA
  • Palak Shah, Social Innovations Director, National Domestic Workers Alliance, New York, NY
  • Lara Shock, Senior Director, Associate Experience, Walmart, Bentonville, AR
  • Walt Tobin, President, Orangeburg-Calhoun Technical College, Orangeburg, SC

“People need stable, quality jobs that are safe, pay enough to live on, and offer essential benefits. There are not enough of these jobs, particularly for low-income, underserved populations,” said Sarah Keh, director of corporate giving, Prudential Financial, Inc., in a webinar discussing the Fellowship. “Low quality jobs can be a core driver of inequality because everything is intertwined in today’s economy. Businesses succeed when individuals, families, and communities are thriving too.”

“Businesses succeed when individuals, families, and communities are thriving too.”

For over 25 years, EOP has aimed to expand opportunities for people to connect to quality work, build assets, and attain a stable economic standing. The new Job Quality Fellowship Program extends this ongoing mission.

We look forward to updating you on these esteemed fellows’ accomplishments in the coming months. For more information about the Fellowship, visit as.pn/jobquality