NGAF teamed with PepsiCo to create the Leadership Endowment after the completion of the 2020 Head Start program, which launched virtually in response to the pandemic. The endowment will award one scholarship annually for the next 10 years to a woman or minority candidate, with the grant paying the cost of attending the program, scheduled this year for June 5-9.
“This scholarship will ensure that diverse candidates from small businesses who may not otherwise be able to participate in the program will have equal access to leadership development opportunities,” said Maggie White, director of NGAF, the 501(c)3 nonprofit arm of the Arlington, Virginia-based National Grocers Association, which represents the independent grocery sector. “We are grateful to PepsiCo for its generosity that makes this scholarship possible.”
“PepsiCo is proud to partner with NGAF to provide rising professionals from underrepresented groups more access to networking and leadership development,” noted Kent Montgomery, VP of North America industry relations at Purchase, N.Y.-based PepsiCo. “We know that investing in leaders at critical stages in their career will provide skills needed to advance them to the executive ranks.”
The partnership represents another milestone in PepsiCo’s Racial Equality Journey, which in 2020 saw the company make investments of more than $845 million to be used over the next five years to advance and empower Black and Hispanic communities in the United States.
Eligible applicants are women or people of color that are current mid- to upper-level executives with large spans of control and responsibilities that require delegation of tasks to others. The employees must be rising executives who are candidates for greater management responsibilities. A diverse committee comprising members of the NGAF Board of Regents, the Women Grocers of America, a representative from Cornell University’s Executive Education program, and PepsiCo leadership will select the scholarship recipients.
The scholarship application period opens Feb. 1, with a deadline for scholarship applications of April 1. The annual ELDP nominations are due April 16.