After both personal and family tragedy, James landed at Keys to Work as their office manager in 2016. James became familiar with the profound impact both Keys to Work and RecycleForce have in the lives of those we serve. In 2017, Keys to Work was awarded the WIOA federal grant to serve, out-of-school youth, who were homeless or formally incarcerated. Along with local youth services grant YES, James changed positions to become the manager of these two programs and serve as the primary case manager for our youth clients. Keys to Work’s youth program has since remained a high performing program. In 2020, EmployIndy offered James the chance to apply for the Indiana’s Governors Coaching Corps. James was accepted along 35 other workforce development professionals from across the state to work on creating new models and best practices that will be formally presented in December. Keys to Work’s youth program was again recognized by EmployIndy, and became one of three organizations in Indianapolis to join a pilot project with the National Youth Employment Coalition.
James is currently working with a consortium of youth services organizations across the Mid-West and Western U.S. This pilot program seeks to introduce TABS (Translating Adolescent Brain Science) into our programs. The intent is to gather data and best practices that will be presented in Washington D.C. for national consideration.