As the current Executive Director for the Arizona Advanced Manufacturing Institute (AzAMI), Leah Palmer has developed workforce implementation strategies to effectively address the growing workforce and economic development demands in Arizona. Such strategies include helping to connect the talent supply with competency-based training in automation, robotics, electronics, 3D printing, drafting, machining and welding programs for the manufacturing sector. Leah’s expertise is strategic planning, program design, grants management, and building a systems approach supported by collaborative processes and teamwork that bring together education resources and Industry partners. Leah has worked in other leadership roles as the Director for Workforce and Community Partnerships, building both credit and noncredit workforce training. She was the Associate Director for Community Partnerships for the Maricopa Center for Public Policy, where she engaged regional executive leadership, provided project management, assisted resource acquisition, and supported P20 education initiatives. Leah has also served as the Grant Administrator for the Gates Foundation Communities Learning in Partnership (CLIP) Grant, and successfully completed a Federal (TAACCCT) workforce grant. She is currently a member of the “New Models for Accelerated Workforce Programs” national consortium funded by the Lumina Foundation; Project lead for the Arizona Statewide Pathway Development for the Arizona Advanced Technology Network (AATN); and a member of the American Institute for AIMS Photonics Advisory Council. Leah earned her master’s degree in Organizational Communication (Training & Development) from Arizona State University.
The Workforce Leadership Academies are part of the Economic Opportunity Fellows Network, a network of leadership and fellowship programs run by the Aspen Institute Economic Opportunities Program. Within this Network, EOP connects national and local leaders from across sectors — nonprofit, government, business, philanthropy, academia, and more — to advance policies and practices with the potential to help low- and moderate-income Americans thrive in today’s economy. Learn more at as.pn/eofn.
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