Alumni Spotlight: Madison Ayers

Alumni Spotlight: Madison Ayers

Over the years, YLC has facilitated training for more than 3,000 individuals, many of whom continue to serve and support our local nonprofit community as board leaders. As participants graduate from the program, many of them transition into a one-year board internship, where they can put their newfound knowledge and skills to use and immediately make an impact in the community.

We recently received an inspiring note from Sarah Lingo, Executive Director for Sister Cities, a nonprofit organization focused on promoting peace through mutual respect, understanding, and cooperation by connecting individuals in Nashville to other people around the world. Sarah shared her experience with one of YLC’s recent alumni, Madison Ayers, a YLC Nashville Class 78 graduate who completed her one-year board internship with the organization. Please see Sarah’s note below.

“Madison has become an important part of our board and our organization. She has participated in many events including helping us prepare for our largest fundraising gala, donating homemade macarons for the event, donating a personal yoga instruction class for our silent auction, and regularly participates in all things we do.  In May, she accompanied an official delegation visit to Erbil, Kurdistan, Iraq as we explored a possible new sister city relationship between Erbil and Nashville.  This was a huge endeavor and one where Madison, as our youngest delegation member, showed an incredible amount of professionalism, cultural competency, and leadership. Madison has consistently shown an effort to reach out to our Kurdish brothers and sisters here in Nashville as well as forge connections with those living in Erbil.  I am continuously impressed with her and have come to lean on her as a vital member of our organization, as well as a friend. Though she technically could not vote on the Erbil relationship, she was a strong voice of recommendation for our board to look to when making this major decision.  Her participation in this delegation visit was, in simple terms, a really big deal.” 

Sister Cities plans to offer Madison the opportunity to become a full board member this fall and expressed sincere gratitude for the work she has done to support the organization over the past year. YLC is truly proud of Madison and her commitment to advancing the mission and global work of Sister Cities.

We love to hear from our alumni and community partners! If you would like to share your stories with YLC, please email Rachel Reyes at

Young Leaders Council announces spring graduates

Young Leaders Council announces spring graduates

Nashville’s Young Leaders Council has recognized 112 young professionals through its 2023 spring cohort.

According to a release, the group is comprised of the Nashville Spring 2023, Junior League of Nashville and the Jack C. Massey College of Business at Belmont University classes. Spring training began in early March with an opening session and address from Derek Young, YLC alumnus and president/CEO of Young Motivation Group.

Training concluded on May 17 as participants transitioned into their board internships, where they serve as non-voting members of local nonprofit boards. 

YLC seeks to train a diverse group of individuals to participate on the boards of nonprofit organizations. Founded in 1985, Young Leaders Council has more than 3,000 alumni.

“YLC has the honor of ensuring that the nonprofit community has direct access to bright, well-trained  young professionals who have the knowledge and skills necessary to effectively serve as board leaders,”  Kim James, YLC executive director, said in the release.

Young Leaders Council’s philanthropic partners include The Frist Foundation, HCA Healthcare Foundation, Truist Foundation, The Marlene and Spencer Hays Foundation, The Memorial Foundation and The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee.