Strive Together national managing director visits the Mid-South, discusses collective & collaborative impact with local leaders

Jeff Edmonson speaks with the United Way Board of Directors yesterday morning.

Jeff Edmondson (standing, left) speaks with the United Way Board of Directors yesterday morning.

Jeff Edmondson, Managing Director of Strive Together, visited Memphis yesterday to share more information about the Strive Together framework of collective impact to build a cradle-to-career civic infrastructure with leaders from local business, nonprofits and government.

Edmondson, along with Alicia Suguitan-Morrow, Project Manager for StriveTogether, met with community leaders to discuss the power of working and planning together to make measurable impacts on local issues.

StriveTogether, a subsidiary of KnowledgeWorks, is a national cradle-to-career initiative that brings leaders from Pre-K-12 schools, higher education, business and industry, community organizations, government leaders, parents and other stakeholders together to help children succeed from birth through careers.

United Way Board Chairman Martha Perine Beard with Edmonson and United Way President Bryce Haugsdahl (right)

United Way Board Chairman Martha Perine Beard with Edmonson and United Way President Bryce Haugsdahl (right)

Edmondson’s morning started with a visit to the United Way of the Mid-South Board of Directors where he shared details about the growing relationship between Strive Together and United Way Worldwide. He also spoke about how the work of Strive Mid-South and the Seeding Success Partnership is influencing our reinvention work in the United Way Strategic Plan.

Board members were very interested in Edmondson’s presentation, and United Way President Bryce Haugsdahl remarked that “board members were quoting Edmonson even after our meeting was over.”

Later in the morning Edmondson visited with Ruby Bright, executive director and chief administrative officer of the Women’s Foundation for a Greater Memphis, with Robert Lipscomb, Director of Housing & Community Development for the City of Memphis, and with Barbara Jacobs, program director of The Plough Foundation.

Edmondson (right) spoke to a luncheon of community leaders in East Memphis yesterday.

Edmondson (right) spoke to a luncheon of community leaders in East Memphis yesterday.

Edmondson’s busy day wasn’t over yet however, as he was the featured speaker at a luncheon in East Memphis where he spoke further about Strive Together’s relationship with United Way and how bringing different sectors together in a collective impact model can help guide community efforts more effectively.

Executives and representatives from the University of Memphis, Shelby County Government, Memphis Tomorrow, PeopleFirst, Achievement Schools District, FedEx, Ability Works, Inc., Citizens Bank, Public Health, the Tennessee Department of Human Services, and other groups attended the luncheon.

Edmondson’s day ended with a meeting of the Seeding Success Partnership, a cross-sector effort representing early childhood, K-12 institutions, higher education, nonprofits, business, health, civic, faith, and philanthropic organizations. Seeding Success partne organizations commit to a common set of outcomes and commit to work through a collaborative action process to “move the needle” on key areas of need.

The Seeding Success partnership is a collaboration of Strive Mid-South and PeopleFirst to support Shelby County’s cradle-to-career vision for local children.

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About Dave Skorupa

Dave Skorupa is a member of the Communications team at United Way of the Mid-South, Memphis, TN.
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