Former Los Angeles Mayor Richard Riordan to Support Re-Launch of Riordan Leadership Instititue

March 21, 2016 12:00 pm
by Southern California Leadership Network

LOS ANGELES, CA — Today, the Southern California Leadership Network (SCLN) and the Los Angeles Junior Chamber of Commerce (LAJCC) Charity Foundation announced the LAJCC Leadership Institute’s transition to SCLN. The program -- through a new partnership with former Los Angeles Mayor Richard Riordan and The Riordan Foundation -- will return to its previous name, Riordan Leadership Institute (RLI).

Originally founded in 1990 by Mayor Riordan and administered at LAJCC Charity Foundation, RLI will continue its mission of developing and cultivating early- to mid-career professionals for lifelong community engagement and leadership on nonprofit boards.

Mayor Riordan said, “I am proud to have planted the seed that started this wonderful program 25 years ago. It is a joy to know that the legacy of the program will continue under the leadership of SCLN.”

Prior to becoming mayor, Riordan observed a lack of succession planning in nonprofit board governance and wanted to solve this program. With advisory direction from Coro Southern California, The United Way and the LAJCC Charity Foundation, the idea of training a new generation of volunteer leaders took hold. The program began with an inaugural class of 15 young professionals and has, since then, graduated more than 1,300 participants.

Traci Torok, chair of the LAJCC Charity Foundation’s board of trustees, said, “After 25 years at the LAJCC Charity Foundation, we are excited by the opportunity to have SCLN assume the Leadership Institute and are confident that the program will be even stronger and more effective in the future. We are very grateful to all our partners who have, over the years, invested in making the program what it is today.”

SCLN executive director Nancy Olson said, “We are thrilled to have this program join our organization. It is in great alignment with our mission to build diverse civic leadership across L.A. and our state. Thanks to the partnership of Mayor Riordan, the LAJCC Charity Foundation, The Riordan Foundation, California Community Foundation, Capital Group, Toyota Financial Services, the SCLN board and many other stakeholders, Riordan Leadership Institute is poised for its next phase of impact and growth.”

With this announcement, Riordan Leadership Institute will join SCLN’s existing family of leadership fellowships — Leadership L.A., Leadership Southern California and California Connections — which have collectively graduated nearly 2,000 professionals from government, business, nonprofit and philanthropic sectors in SCLN’s 30-year history.

Recruitment for Riordan Leadership Institute will begin later this spring and the next cohort will begin sessions this fall.

For more information about the program, contact SCLN executive director Nancy Olson at or 213.580.7577.


Southern California Leadership Network advances the region and the state by inspiring, preparing and connecting leaders to drive change. It does this through it signature leadership fellowships, continued leadership development opportunities and other events to promote lifelong leadership learning. SCLN is a partnership with the Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce, which champions civic leadership as key to helping promote a prosperous economy and quality of life in the Los Angeles region. For more information about SCLN, visit For more information about the L.A. Area Chamber, visit

The Los Angeles Junior Chamber of Commerce and its Charity Foundation strive to empower young professionals through professional enrichment, leadership development and community service. This is accomplished by creating an exclusive portal for access, opportunities and connections; providing a multi-tiered platform of professional enrichment and lifelong learning;

developing leaders through volunteerism and community service; building bridges of understanding across generations and diverse communities; and influencing the future of Los Angeles through civic and community engagement. For more information about the LA Junior Chamber Charity Foundation, visit


Founded in 1981 by the former Mayor of Los Angeles, The Riordan Foundation’s mission is to provide students, especially those in low-income communities, with access to a high-quality education that will prepare them to compete successfully in the 21st century. With its emphasis on leadership development and instructional innovation, the foundation seeks to develop a more engaged, creative, and active citizenry in Los Angeles. For more information, visit

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