Delta Leadership Institute now accepting applications for 2019-2020 Executive Academy

May 15, 2019

Clarksdale, Miss. — Today, the Delta Regional Authority (DRA) began accepting applications for the 2019 – 2020 Delta Leadership Institute Executive Academy. Since 2005, the Delta Leadership Institute (DLI) has trained a diverse group of community leaders who currently live and/or work in the Mississippi Delta.

DLI is an extensive ten month program where Executive Academy Fellows travel to communities in each of DRA’s eight member states exploring existing economic and community development programs and best practices. Throughout the Executive Academy’s seven sessions, Fellows will focus on leadership development and regionally-signficant policy issues, with an emphasis on economic development, infrastructure, workforce training and education, entrepreneurship, business development, and public health.

Upon graduation, DLI fellows become members of the Delta Leadership Network, which provides peer-to-peer engagement opportunities for continued leadership development, information sharing, and collaboration with other leaders dedicated to the future of the DRA region. 

“The Executive Academy provides DLI Fellows with access to resources that will enhance workforce and economic development opportunities across the Delta Regional Authority (DRA) footprint.” DRA Federal Co-Chairman Chris Caldwell said. “This network provides for inter-agency collaboration and coordination to engage private and public sector partners that ultimately improve the lives and economic opportunities for the 10 million residents in the Mississippi Delta and Alabama Black Belt regions.”

The DLI will be limited to 40 Fellows, comprised of representatives from the Delta’s public, private, and non-profit sectors. Chosen through a competitive application process, the 2019 – 2020 Executive Academy class will include Fellows from each of the eight states in the DRA footprint.

Those interested can apply through July 16 at The 2019 – 2020 Delta Leadership Institute Executive Academy will run from October 2019 – August 2020.

The Delta Leadership Institute is a comprehensive regional training program of the Delta Regional Authority in partnership with regional institutions of higher education to support and education leaders committed to helping create jobs, build their communities, and improve the lives of their neighbors. Through its Executive Academy, DLI has provided leadership development to more than 500 community leaders over thirteen years and strengthened skills development, information sharing, and regional collaboration. Learn more at

About the Delta Regional Authority

The Delta Regional Authority is a federal-state partnership created by Congress in 2000 to help create jobs, build communities, and improve lives through strategic investments in economic development in 252 counties and parishes across eight states. DRA has invested more than $185 million into more than 1,100 projects. Overall, DRA investments have helped create and retain more than 55,000 jobs, train nearly 45,000 workers to advance in the 21st Century and deliver sewer and water improvements to more than 238,000 residents and businesses. Learn more at

Program Contact: Aury Kangelos
(901) 484-5082