NextGen Southside: 

Leadership Cohort at the

Cities Rising Summit

Sept. 15 - Oct. 30, 2020


Emerging leaders convene around ideas and solutions to move the region through and beyond the pandemic.

“NextGen Southside” is a seven-week virtual learning and networking opportunity for emerging leaders from Southern Virginia. Taking place throughout Tom Tom’s 2020 Cities Rising Summit, this initiative is designed in the context of COVID-19, with the Dan River Region’s challenges, assets, and opportunities in mind.

Southern Virginia is in a period of transition—community leaders are retiring, industry is diversifying, downtowns are thriving, businesses are opening and public perception of the area is improving. Despite the uncertainty and challenges brought on by the COVID-19 crisis, it is an exciting time to live in the region.

To realize their regional potential, the next generation of leaders must be prepared to lead from any seat. The cohort will provide a space for emerging leaders from Southern Virginia to serve as learners and contributors in the innovative and engaging environment present at the

Cities Rising Summit. 

A virtual orientation, weekly debrief sessions and a post-Summit final session will focus on intentional leadership engagement and programming in an effort to facilitate a smooth leadership transition during and beyond the pandemic.


2020 Facilitators

2020 Cohort

The Cities Rising Summit

In the shadow of a global pandemic and ongoing movement for racial justice, the need could not be greater for multi-sector city leaders to exchange ideas and develop solutions for their communities around entrepreneurship, health, education, the arts, justice, and data.

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The Tom Tom Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, EIN: 46-2048771