AACCNJ’s Harmon to participate in U.S. chamber’s leadership program

­File Photo John Harmon, CEO and president of the African American Chamber of Commerce of New Jersey.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation announced Wednesday it has chosen John E. Harmon Sr., founder, CEO and president of the African American Chamber of Commerce of New Jersey, to participate in the third cohort of its premier business leadership program, the Business Leads Fellowship Program.

The chamber said the program trains and equips officials from state and local chambers with resources and access to experts and a network of peers to build on their capacity to address education and workforce challenges.

“As a vanguard for the 1.1 million African American residents … it is important that I remain current on the most effective methods, strategies and best practices to position our constituency for optimal success while consequently strengthening the competitiveness of New Jersey,” Harmon said.

“We created the Business Leads Fellowship Program in response to the needs of our state and local chamber partners,” Cheryl Oldham, senior vice president of the Center for Education and Workforce, said. “They, better than anyone, see the critical link between education and economic development, and we are glad to be able to support them as they take on this critical leadership role in their community.”

Harmon, who completed an application process for the program, was selected along with 33 others to participate in the four-month program.

The program, which ends in September, will cover topics including early childhood education, K-12, higher education and workforce development.

Once completed, Business Leads Fellows will join a network of 200 chambers and associations from around the nation who regularly are engaged on education and workforce initiatives.