Image Image Image Image Image Image Image Image Image

2013 March

18 Mar


IMPACT Participates in Transatlantic Inclusion Leadership Conference

March 18, 2013 | By |

Young Professionals Discuss Ways to Engage in Global Leadership Opportunities

(Washington, DC) — This past week, March 14-18, 2013, IMPACT sponsored and led a delegation of young elected officials and leaders to Brussels, Belgium for the Transatlantic Inclusion Leaders Network (TILN) conference and Brussels Forum. In total, 25 young, minority political leaders from the United States and 15 European countries convened March 14-15, 2013 in advance of the Brussels Forum for political skills training and to build the TILN, a pillar of the German Marshall Fund’s Leadership, Diversity, and Inclusion Initiative.  Later, the young leaders participated in the Young Professionals Summit of Brussels Forum and visited with parliamentarians as well as the diversity and inclusion experts at the European Parliament.

“In a world that is becoming more multi-ethnic and inclusive, it was essential for IMPACT to support and participate in this transatlantic dialogue,” said IMPACT Director David Johns. “Young people need a voice at the table and in order to successfully develop the next generation of leaders, we must promote the exchange of diversity and cultural competency best practices across the globe.”

Specifically, conference participants delved into current issues relevant to cyber security, political organizing, xenophobia and political ethics, the role of youth in shaping the future of Transatlantic relations, and much more.

“This was an incredible opportunity to share IMPACT’s minority advocacy experiences with our counterparts overseas,” added Nina Smith, IMPACT’s Deputy Director. “For the first time since the beginning of the Brussels Forum, young minority professionals had the chance to literally speak truth to power and be present during some of the most important policy conversations shaping our collective future for years to come.”

IMPACT’s delegation included: IMPACT Director David Johns, IMPACT Deputy Director Nina Smith, Arizona State Representative Ruben Gallego, South Carolina State Representative Bakari Sellers, Detroit, Michigan’s Mayor David Bing’s Legislative Liaison Adam Hollier, and President of the California Latino School Boards Association Xilonin Cruz-Gonazalez.

Partners in building TILN included: IMPACT, the German Marshall Fund, the U.S. Department of State, the U.S. Helsinki Commission, Open Society Foundations, and the Balkan Trust for Democracy.

IMPACT (@teamIMPACT) is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to engage and build a network of young professionals of color to foster civic engagement, increase knowledge of the political and legislative processes, and enhance economic empowerment opportunities. For additional information about IMPACT, visit


04 Mar


IL::Leslie Hale

March 4, 2013 | By |

Leslie HaleMeet our IMPACT Leader of the Month, Ms. Leslie Hale. Ms. Hale is a seasoned real estate investment and finance executive, whose career spans nearly 20 years and involves more than $20 BN in transactions.

Ms. Hale has served as Chief Financial Officer and Senior Vice President of Real Estate for RLJ Development, LLC, since 2007. The firm was a privately-held real estate investment firm with more than $2BN of institutional capital under management. RLJ Development became RLJ Lodging Trust (RLJ), a publicly traded company, in May 2011. Ms. Hale is responsible for all financial matters across RLJ. As CFO, she is intricately involved in the company’s investment decision-making, daily operations and long-term strategic planning. In addition to her CFO responsibilities, Ms. Hale oversees the execution of all asset and corporate level transactions.

She joined RLJ in 2005, as its Director of Real Estate and Finance, with responsibility for obtaining financing for all assets and managing the execution process for each financing and real estate transaction. Ms. Hale was promoted to Vice President in 2006 and her responsibilities were expanded to include all treasury functions. In this role, she successfully created and oversaw the portfolio management arm of RLJ. Prior to her tenure at RLJ, she held several positions within General Electric Capital Corp. (GE), including as a Vice President in the Mergers and Acquisitions Group of GE Commercial Finance, and as an Associate Director in the GE Real Estate – Strategic Capital Group. Before GE, Ms. Hale was an investment banker at Goldman, Sachs & Co., advising clients across industries on mergers, acquisitions, and corporate finance matters. Prior to attending business school, Ms. Hale worked for GE Real Estate in both the Large Transactions Group and the European Mergers & Acquisitions Group.

Read More

01 Mar


March 1, 2013 | By |