Bingham Fellows 2024 applications now open – Topic is “Safer City: Creating a Thriving City for All”

Applications open for Bingham Fellows Class of 2024 –

Topic is: “Safer City: Creating a Thriving City for All”

Leadership Louisville Center to partner with the Community Foundation of Louisville, to continue legacy of the Greater Louisville Project and its “Safer City By Design” report

Each year, the Leadership Louisville Center’s Bingham Fellows program looks to the community to understand our greatest challenges and identify what is mission critical to create the kind of place where we all thrive. A topic is selected based on importance, urgency, and opportunity for a group of community leaders to create meaningful positive action. Interested business and community leaders apply to participate in the year-long program to work with peers to develop solutions to our community’s most pressing challenges. The topic for the 2024 Bingham Fellows will be – Safer City: Creating a Thriving City for All.

Public safety is at the forefront of our community’s concerns, and there is momentum across sectors to address this persistent challenge in order to make Louisville a safe and vibrant city. Preventing and reducing violence is a complex issue with a range of social, cultural, and economic factors. In order to meaningfully impact this critical need, the Center is partnering with the Community Foundation of Louisville, which is continuing the legacy of the Greater Louisville Project (GLP) including the 2023 “Safer City By Design” report. The report presents data on the state of violence in Louisville, how it can be addressed using a public health approach, and funding challenges for current evidence-based and community-informed violence intervention and prevention strategies. This will provide a roadmap for the Bingham Fellows Class of 2024 to build a safer city and answer the call to create a thriving city for all.

Applications for the Bingham Fellows Class of 2024 are being accepted through October 14, 2023 at Individuals who want to experience an unmatched practicum in change management and group dynamics while using their broad knowledge base and range of experience to move the needle on this important community issue should apply. The upcoming program year begins in January 2024 and ends in January 2025. For more information, contact Sara Bowman at (502) 753-1492 or

“As we strive to solve 21st century problems, elevated civic engagement is more important now than ever before. The Bingham Fellows program offers thoughtful, concerned citizens an experiential leadership laboratory to foster innovative solutions that can drive change on critical economic and social issues. The program is a national best practice that brings diverse voices together under one tent to discuss complex issues and cooperate to achieve shared goals,” said Cynthia Knapek, President & CEO of the Leadership Louisville Center. “There is no shared goal that is more imperative than public safety and now is the time to amplify the momentum to address this persistent challenge in order to make Louisville a safe and vibrant city. For 30 years this class has prepared community leaders to act both wisely and courageously to be part of a rising tide that can lift all ships.”

More about the 2024 Topic – “Safer City: Creating a Thriving City for All”

The GLP’s “Safer City By Design” report examined root causes of violence, the importance of investing in youth, and the unique opportunity that federal American Rescue Plan (ARP) funding for violence intervention programs has provided. This critical data around violence as a public health issue and the importance of investing in violence intervention and prevention solutions will serve as a baseline for the class to explore the issues.

While the report provides the data, it concludes with a call to the community to continue this work and address the “funding cliff” that our community faces when ARP funding runs out in 2025. The Bingham Fellows Class of 2024 will answer that call. The advanced leadership and social impact accelerator program will bring together business, nonprofit, and community leaders to identify solutions and innovative ways to expand evidence-based and community-informed violence intervention and prevention programs.

The class will learn from GLP’s research on root causes of violence and how it disproportionately affects historically oppressed or historically marginalized populations such as disconnected youth, women, and people living in poverty. They will examine the data on the intersection of systems of power, policy, and protective and risk factors. They will learn about the initiatives that have been designed by the people who have been most impacted by violence and are currently funded through 2024. This will allow the class to focus their work around areas identified as opportunities to make significant impact, including:

  • Violence Prevention and Intervention Strategies
  • Education & Workforce Solutions
  • Incarceration, Restorative Justice & Re-Entry

The impact of violence on our community is incalculable. Safety is crucial for our collective well-being, and it is a basic ingredient for a city where people, neighborhoods, and businesses can prosper. Now is the time to ensure we implement and resource the work that Louisville needs to get there. The Bingham Fellows Class of 2024 seeks a diverse cohort of business and civic leaders who are interested in or have deep experience and expertise on this topic to apply to help create a safe and thriving community for everyone.

About the Bingham Fellows program:

The Bingham Fellows program is the advanced leadership program of the Leadership Louisville Center. Created in 1988 through a $500,000 endowment from the Mary and Barry Bingham Sr. Fund, the Fellows are social entrepreneurs who have the imagination and talent needed to gather critical resources and create social change. Side by side with peers, participants work to develop dynamic and innovative solutions to our community’s most pressing challenges. The 2024 cohort will be the 32nd class, and the Bingham Fellows have had an impressive track record of providing community issues with visibility and momentum.

The Fellows don’t ponder what might be. They roll up their sleeves, shine a spotlight on an issue, and put new ideas to work. Their recent impact includes projects such as the West Louisville community development organization OneWest, regular Café Louie conversations with elected officials at Louisville Free Public Library locations, a sustainable model for neighborhood ‘Little Free Libraries,’ and City Champs, a talent attraction and retention program now managed by Greater Louisville Inc. The impact of the Fellows goes back to the 1990s with the creation of The Housing Partnership, construction of the Presbyterian Community Center, growth of local farmers’ markets, and numerous other positive outcomes. 

The Bingham Fellows Class of 2023 is currently focused on the topic Talent: Pathways & Pipelines, Building a Future-Ready Workforce. Their outcomes will be announced in early 2024.


Leadership Louisville Center

The Leadership Louisville Center is the region’s most valuable resource for leadership development and civic engagement. With a purpose to inspire and equip leaders to be better and do better, it has graduated over 15,000 through its programs since 1979. The Center is recognized as a national best practice and is known for its dynamic programming and strong community connections. Programming includes five social impact leadership programs (Leadership Louisville, Focus Louisville, Ignite Louisville, Bingham Fellows, and Encore Louisville), the Alice Houston Women’s Leadership Program, leadership skills training courses presented through partner brand LeadingBetter™, and events designed to connect leaders and motivate positive change. Learn more at


Community Foundation of Louisville

Founded in 1984, the Community Foundation of Louisville mobilizes people, networks, and capital to spark meaningful change in and beyond Louisville. With nearly $800 million in assets, over 2,200 charitable funds, and collaborations with hundreds of local partners, we connect real investments with relevant causes. In addition, key priorities of the Foundation’s mission are to advance racial equity and open opportunity for all. Working with neighbors, changemakers, and community investors, we’re inspiring greater generosity to move us all forward.


About Greater Louisville Project

After 20 years of benchmarking Louisville’s performance against its peer cities with research, data and insightful analysis; the Greater Louisville Project sunset to make way for new organizations and initiatives leaving the Greater Louisville Project legacy to the Community Foundation of Louisville. The Community Foundation of Louisville continues to make Greater Louisville Project data available to the public while mobilizing action to address the persistent community challenges documented in the Greater Louisville Project’s 20 years of regional data.

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For more information, contact:
Holly Prather
Chief Operations Officer
Office: (502) 753-6503 | Cell: (502) 609-9227