Jacksonville Leadership Academy

Established in 2022, the Jacksonville Leadership Academy seeks to develop community leaders by training and informing participants on a wide array of local public policy issues and concerns.

In-depth training sessions focus on these issues, exploring their background, origin and present-day status. The program covers a full slate of topics, including government, the area’s economy, education, social services and much more. The sessions combine lectures, tours, dialogue and interaction between speakers and participants.

For more information, contact Kathy Perez, (501) 982-1511.

The Purpose

Jacksonville Leadership Academy was created by the Jacksonville Chamber of Commerce to develop a strong group of leaders that are equipped to handle current and future needs of our city. To accomplish this, the JLA is looking to:

  • Identify and motivate citizens with leadership potential
  • Educate these potential leaders on community needs, challenges and opportunities
  • Offer a forum of exchange on methods for dealing with community issues
  • Challenge potential leaders to become involved with local issues and the decision-making process.

The Curriculum

The Jacksonville Leadership Academy meets once a month. The curriculum may vary slightly from year-to-year, but a typical year’s sessions are as follows:

  • Class Reception
  • Team Building
  • Little Rock Port Authority
  • City & County Government
  • Economic and Workforce Development
  • Annual Meeting for the Chamber
  • Health and Human Services
  • State Government
  • Education
  • Tourism and Hospitality
  • Military – Little Rock Air Force Base
  • Graduation

Applications are currently being accepted for Class III, starting in September 2024.

What Our Members Say About Us

"My father was instrumental in creating the Chamber of Commerce in 1948. Keep in mind that it wasn’t until a year later that he founded Jacksonville State Bank (now FAB&T). That fact demonstrates the value that my family and other community leaders saw in the need to create a bustling Chamber of Commerce in Jacksonville right from the start. The Chamber of Commerce has played an important role in many of Jacksonville’s successes, including the Little Rock Air Force Base and helping to secure our own school district. A healthy and vibrant chamber is critical to the success of any community, and we are so very grateful for the networking events and investment opportunities that the Chamber provides to our bank. We’ve been a member for 75 years and will be a member for many more years to come."

Larry T. Wilson, Chairman and CEO of FAB&T

"Working with the Jacksonville Chamber of Commerce has benefited me personally and professionally. Working as an Ex Officio member of the board has given me insight into this amazing city and helped create strong working relationships with civic-minded volunteers on the board. Membership in the Chamber has allowed Unity Health – Jacksonville the opportunity to be involved in the community we serve and hopefully to help draw even more organizations to Jacksonville to open businesses. Membership also brings awareness to our business in the community. As a relatively new organization in Jacksonville, some members of our community might not have known we were open without the support and promotion of the Chamber."

Kevin Burton, MBA, Administrator at Unity Health | Jacksonville

"We are so proud of Kathy, the staff and board members at our Jacksonville Chamber of Commerce. They are doing an awesome job of promoting Jacksonville. We love the Chamber e-mail blasts too- they keep us up to date with all the good things going on in Jacksonville. Great Job Chamber of Commerce team!"

Mark Goodsell, Owner of Goodsell Truck Accessories