Workshop 1

Local Strategies to Advance Economic Mobility for Residents: Early Childhood Education, Career Readiness and Employment

Mayors and local leaders have multiple levers they can pull to enhance economic mobility for their residents. Which local policy and program levers will create the most meaningful and sustained impact for residents? How can the consistent use of high quality data and evidence help accelerate impact? Learn from representatives in five cities participating in the What Works Cities Economic Mobility initiative around the strategies being implemented in the areas of early childhood education, career readiness and employment.

City presenters from Dayton, OH; Tulsa, OK; Racine, WI; New Orleans, LA; and Cincinnati, OH will each share the main policy challenge their local team is working to address through this initiative, including the short- and long-term outcomes they seek to impact, the project they are implementing, and the evidence base underpinning their project. Participants will walk away with an understanding of the ways that local communities are working to improve economic mobility outcomes for their residents.


  • Ryan Rippel, Director, U.S. Economic Mobility and Opportunity, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (Opening Remarks) (Bio)
  • Robyn Lightcap, Executive Director, Learn to Earn Dayton and Preschool Promise, Inc. 
  • Karen Pennington, Executive Director, Tulsa Community WorkAdvance, Madison Strategies Group (Bio)
  • Chelsea Powell, Deputy Director, Higher Expectations for Racine County (Bio)
  • Cate Swinburn, President, YouthForce NOLA (Bio)
  • Audrey Treasure, Vice President & Executive Director, Workforce Innovation Center, Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber 
  • Moderator: Maia Jachimowicz, Vice President, Evidence-Based Policy Implementation, Results for America (Bio)


What Works Cities Economic Mobility Initiative One-Pager
Project Summaries – DaytonTulsaRacineNew Orleans and Cincinnati