NOLABA Ambassadorship Program

The New Orleans Economic Development Ambassadorship Program is the singular program in the city of New Orleans that provides in-depth insight into the work of growing and diversifying the city’s economy. Because economic development is a cross-cutting issue affecting businesses in every industry and the economic security of all New Orleanians, NOLABA brings together in this 7-week program experienced professionals from a variety of sectors to become better informed ambassadors for the city.

Applications are CLOSED for our Fall 2018 class. 


New Orleans Economic Development Ambassadorship Program – Fall 2018 Session Schedule


Fall 2018 classes will run Tuesday evenings September 25th – October 30th from 5:30 – 8:00. The final session/graduation reception will be held Wednesday, November 7th. Dinner is included.


Session 1: NOLABA, A New Model for Economic Development in New Orleans (Tuesday, September 25th)

Speakers: Quentin L. Messer, Jr., President & CEO; Ashleigh Gardere, Executive Vice President & COO

Location: NOLABA is moving offices at the end of September, so the first session will be hosted by our regional economic development partner GNO, Inc. at 1100 Poydras St #3475.


Session 2: Business Retention & Attraction, Emerging Industries: Creative Digital Media, Food, Music & BioInnovation (Tuesday, October 2nd)

Speakers: Louis David, Vice President of Industry Attraction & Retention; Bill Sabo, Director, Food, Music and Software Tech; Sally Lindsay, Manager, Business Development and Strategy (VFA Fellow)

Location: TBA


Session 3: Small Business Development + Repositioning the City’s Brand #WhyNOLA “The Ideal Intersection of Commerce & Culture” (Tuesday, October 9th)

Speakers: Lynnette White-Colin, Director of Small Business Ecosystem Development; Wayne Encalarde, Jr., Small Business Ecosystem Development Specialist; Panel of small business owners; Morgan Stewart, Vice President of Marketing & Communications

Location: TBA


Session 4: Strategic Neighborhood Development (Tuesday, October 16th)

Speaker: Asali DeVan Ecclesiastes, Director of Strategic Neighborhood Development

Location: TBA


Session 5: How Policy Impacts Economic Development + Performance Management; Measuring our Impact (Tuesday, October 23rd)

Speakers: Nolan Marshall, Vice President External Affairs and Policy; Alejandra Guzman, Vice President of Performance Management and Strategy; Omar Stanton, Director Performance Management and Strategy

+ Industry Asset Tour Group Reporting Out

Location: TBA


Session 6: Workforce Development + Talent Attraction & Retention (Tuesday, October 30th)

Moderator: Brandi Ebanks, Assistant Vice President of Talent Development
Panelists: Monique Robinson, Director of Integrated Partnerships; Executive Director of 504ward; Tom Krumins, Manager, Business Development and Strategy (VFA Fellow), Angela Cryer, Director of Strategic Integrated Partnerships.

Location: TBA


Session 7: Graduation Reception (Wednesday, November 7th)
Location: New Orleans Jazz Market


Industry Asset/Enrichment Tours (Throughout program – participants should choose at least 1 to attend)

  • TBA


Thank you to our sponsors:

As the official economic development organization for the city of New Orleans, NOLABA partners with businesses throughout the city to build a strong, sustainable economy for all residents. To inquire about sponsoring our Economic Development Ambassadorship Program, contact Vice President of Investor Relations Stephanie Bell.