It’s been 50 years since the St. Petersburg Area Chamber of Commerce launched its intensive training program for community and business leaders. Leadership St. Pete is now the second-oldest program of its type in the country; it has turned out – and this is a conservative estimate – 1,500 graduates well-tuned to the issues and opportunities present in our community, and ready (and willing) to face them.
Among the program’s distinguished alumni: Former Florida governor (and current state representative) Charlie Crist, former St. Pete mayor Rick Baker, Florida senator Jeff Brandes and the city’s deputy mayor Dr. Kanika Tomalin.
Of the largest 100 cities across the United States, St. Petersburg ranks No. 13 nationally and first in Florida for the successful integration of immigrants into the community, according to a recent report by New American Economy.
In a press conference held Monday, Mayor Rick Kriseman announced St. Petersburg’s ranking and touted the entrepreneurial spirit of the city’s immigrant community, alongside Deputy Mayor Kanika Tomalin, St. Petersburg EDC’s J.P. Dubuque, and St. Petersburg Downtown Partnership’s Jason Mathis.
“Knowing the mayors of some of these other cities, like Austin [ranked No. 79] and Boston [ranked No. 27], it feels good to be ranked higher than them,” laughed Kriseman.
Psychology professor, clinical psychologist and best-selling author Dr. Jordan Peterson addressed a large audience at the Mahaffey Theater in downtown St. Petersburg Saturday night. Peterson informed and entertained the audience with stories from the natural world, and an explanation of a statistical theory to defend the hierarchical structure of American society.
“Hierarchies cannot be laid at the feet of the West,” Peterson said. Such was the fundamental message of his Mahaffey talk, one of many stops on his tour promoting his book, 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos.
The Studio@620 is a prolific collaborator and friend with other arts-based organizations in the community, having worked with freeFall Theatre, Your Real Stories Productions and Sunscreen Film Festival, among others.
When the field of venture philanthropy emerged two decades ago, fueled in part by the spirit of the dotcom era, its leaders had high hopes. They aimed to reinvent how nonprofits were financed and built.