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Global difference-maker, Jamie Van Leeuwen, strives to empower others

Colorado Governor's senior adviser and director of the office of community partnership founded the non-governmental organization Global Livingston Institute in 2000


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JAMIE VAN LEEUWEN, 43

Founder and CEO, the Global Livingston Institute | Senior adviser to Gov. John Hickenlooper

Jamie Van Leeuwen founded the non-governmental organization Global Livingston Institute in 2009 to help students and community leaders form partnerships to find innovative solutions to poverty and unemployment in East Africa.

Separately, he works for Gov. John Hickenlooper as senior adviser and director of the Office of Community Partnerships, which works on everything from obtaining funding for permanent supportive housing for the homeless to getting 1,000 people to ride bicycles in the Pedal the Plains tour.

Van Leeuwen, who completed his Ph.D. in public policy at the Graduate School of Public Affairs at the University of Colorado Denver, says the key to success in both jobs is to empower others.

“To influence and impact change you turn that control over to the communities you work with,” he says. “To truly be effective, you need to listen and think before you act. How do you create jobs so people can take care of their families? That’s what people really want. They want to feel empowered.”

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Nora Caley

Nora Caley is a freelance writer specializing in business and food topics.

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