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Developers of New Terminal One at JFK announces workforce development initiative for southeast Queens communities

Jun. 13, 2023 By Bill Parry

When he helped break ground on the $9.5 billion New Terminal One project at JFK Airport last September, Congressman Gregory Meeks called it a transformative moment for southeast Queens with the creation of 10,000 new jobs, including 6,000 union construction jobs and MWBE and local contracting opportunities among other community benefits. The privately financed 2.4 million square foot state-of-the-art international terminal that will anchor the south side of JFK Airport, would also include robust workforce development programs.

The massive New Terminal One at JFK will be the largest part of the $19 billion JFK Airport transformation project.Photo courtesy of New Terminal One at JFK

Fast forward to June 8, when the New Terminal One at JFK (NTO) announced a new partnership with the Korn Ferry Charitable Foundation to provide a tuition-free, six-month leadership program for local diverse professionals in southeast Queens. The program, Leadership U for Humanity (LUFH), strives to develop and empower diverse business leaders at no cost to the participants and is offered in collaboration with community organizations that include the Greater Jamaica Development Corporation, Rockaway Development & Revitalization Corporation, the Queens Chamber of Commerce, and York College.

The New Terminal One president and CEO Dr. Gerrard Bushell speaking with the owners of Cauley Coach, a family-owned business in southeast Queens, on board one of their buses.Photo courtesy of New Terminal One at JFK

The initial cohort will feature more than 30 seats offered to diverse leaders in Queens from a wide range of industries.

“At the New Terminal One, our commitment is to deliver infrastructure and drive strong, local human capital development. I am proud to announce our new partnership with the Korn Ferry Charitable Foundation and five key community partners from Queens who are equally committed to fostering local talent,” said Dr. Gerrard P. Bushell, President and CEO of The New Terminal One at JFK. “Through this innovative career development program, we are excited to create incredible opportunities for more than 30 local residents to enhance their leadership skills, benefit from personalized mentorship and peer coaching, and learn how to overcome the barriers that often face underrepresented talent.”

Leadership U for Humanity was developed by Korn Ferry for the Korn Ferry Charitable Foundation to create greater opportunities for professionals of color and those from underrepresented populations. Participants in the program are provided with personalized mentorship and coaching from Korn Ferry coaches and facilitators, workshops, along with self-led learning. Through the program, the Foundation intends for participants to develop leadership skills, build confidence, network, and augment their skill sets whether in their early, mid-, or late career.

Photo courtesy of New Terminal One at JFK

“We believe talent exists everywhere and this program serves as a vehicle through which underserved talent can access the career development required to maximize their true potential,” said JT Saunders, Korn Ferry’s chief diversity officer and advisor to LUFH.

Korn Ferry is a global organizational consulting firm working with clients to design optimal organization structures, roles and responsibilities. Korn Ferry helps to hire the right people and advise them on how to reward and motivate their workforce while developing professionals as they navigate and advance their careers. The Korn Ferry Charitable Foundation’s mission is to make real, lasting changes by helping people exceed their potential, whether that is in the boardroom, the classroom or their living room. That means providing support and inspiration to those who need it most through direct relief to individuals affected by a disaster, funding scholarships and programs and offering grants to charitable organizations working to enhance our communities.

“Workforce development initiatives like this are crucial to our local economy and central to the vision of the JFK Redevelopment Community Advisory Council,” Meeks said. “I am excited to see the New Terminal One at JFK and the Korn Ferry Charitable Foundation launch this important, new partnership and continue demonstrating their commitment to robust workforce development in Southeast Queens.”

Since 2018, Meeks has co-chaired the JFK Redevelopment Community Advisory Council alongside Queens Borough President Donovan Richards. The panel includes elected officials, community boards, business and nonprofit organizations, civic associations and clergy from the targeted local communities of southeast Queens that will be most impacted by the massive $19 billion redevelopment at JFK.

“The New Terminal One at JFK is already having a major positive impact on our borough thanks to initiatives like the one announced today,” Richards said. “This partnership will grow the Queens economy by helping over 30 diverse southeast Queens professionals develop leadership skills that will serve them well as they lead their burgeoning enterprises. Thank you to the New Terminal One at JFK and the Korn Ferry Charitable Foundation for teaming up to develop this dynamic and innovative mentorship and workforce development program.”

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