Paul Helton

Paul Helton

New Orleans Workforce Leadership Academy, Class of 2019, Economic Opportunities Program

Executive Director, LED FastStart, New Orleans, Louisiana

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Paul Helton has over 20 years of targeted workforce development experience. As a founding member of LED FastStart, he has helped to create a well-qualified and sustainable workforce in Louisiana for over nine years. Prior to LED FastStart, Helton served as the director of economic development for North Metro Technical College in Acworth, Georgia, leading the contract training, continuing education, and workforce programs divisions. Helton also managed individual company workforce development projects with the successful and highly ranked Georgia Quick Start program. Prior to Georgia Quick Start, Helton was an independent training consultant and a Master Training Specialist with the US Navy TRIDENT nuclear submarine program. A graduate of Regents College (now Excelsior College) of the University of the State of New York, Helton also holds a master’s degree in adult education from the University of Georgia. Helton is also the past president of the National Association of Industry Specific Training Directors (NAISTD) and an active member of Association for Talent Development (ATD), International Economic Development Council (IEDC), the National Association of Workforce Development Professionals (NAWDP), and the Louisiana Industrial Development Executives Association (LIDEA.)

Paul Helton is a member of the New Orleans Workforce Leadership Academy, Class of 2019, one of several Workforce Leadership Academies in localities across North America.

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

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