Congratulations to Twin Cities philanthropist, business leader, volunteer and long-time AchieveMpls champion Tom Grossman, who has been selected for our 2021 Leadership Award. This annual award recognizes individuals who have made outstanding contributions to AchieveMpls that go above and beyond to further our mission and vision. Tom will be honored at our October 14 Evening of Excellence Virtual House Party, which will live-stream at 7 p.m.
Tom’s vision, strategic guidance, mentoring and generous financial support over the past decade has truly transformed AchieveMpls programs and organizational infrastructure, and opened the doors for thousands of high school students to explore and pursue meaningful career pathways outside of traditional four-year college.
Tom first collaborated with AchieveMpls through his generous 2012 transformation grant, a highly competitive grant that launched our measurement and accountability work, provided vital support for the Step Up Youth Employment Program and also funded leadership development and other core programmatic “infrastructure” work.
Soon after he worked with our leadership team to create and fund an innovative new career readiness initiative, which provided additional career-focused staff and resources for our Minneapolis Career & College Centers to ensure that students know about all of their postsecondary opportunities, including two-year technical degrees, certificates, internships, apprenticeships, on-the-job training and other pathways. In the first two year of this initiative, postsecondary enrollment at our two pilot schools increased from 43% to 55%, while the rate at other MPS schools remained flat.
His incredible support for these initiatives, and additional resources for our new Salesforce database system, has taken our work to the next level and allowed us to become a much smarter, data-driven organization. In addition, his personal passion for expanding career opportunities for young people, and his generous guidance and mentoring for our board and staff leadership in this work, is truly remarkable.
"Tom has stood by and stood up for AchieveMpls for so many years without formal recognition," says AchieveMpls CEO Danielle Grant. "We are beyond thrilled to officially honor him at our annual event for his continued contributions over the years."