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Jennifer Blatz is the president and CEO of StriveTogether, a national nonprofit working in nearly 70 communities across the United States to enable more than 12 million young people to succeed in school and life.
Jennifer is a nationally recognized leader and expert in building place-based partnerships. For two decades, she has designed, developed and implemented strategies that drive large-scale community improvement through partnership with local leaders and organizations.
Prior to taking the helm of StriveTogether, Jennifer served in leadership roles, including deputy director and senior director of operations. She was instrumental in launching the national Cradle to Career Network and creating the StriveTogether Theory of Action™. She also developed a bold plan for 24 communities across the country to reach systems-level transformation by 2023.
Before leading StriveTogether, Jennifer was a founding member of StrivePartnership, serving Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky. Through her contributions, StrivePartnership became one of the most notable collective impact initiatives in the country.
Jennifer began her career in the education sector. As executive director of Ohio College Access Network, she led a network of community-based programs focused on improving access to and attainment of postsecondary education.
Jennifer serves as a PolicyLink Ambassador for Health Equity, a LEAP Ambassador, a board member at Raising A Reader and a member of the Cincinnati Business Courier Leadership Trust. She was also invited to help launch the Weave Movement at the Aspen Institute.
Jennifer has been named a YWCA of Greater Cincinnati Rising Star and a Cincinnati Business Courier Forty Under 40. She is a graduate of United Way of Greater Cincinnati’s Volunteer Leadership Development Program, the Billions Institute Skid Row School for Large-Scale Change and the Cincinnati Chamber of Commerce Women Excel Leadership Program.
One of StriveTogether’s core values that speaks to me most powerfully is courage. Not only does the work we do require it, but I believe we must exercise courage to live out all of our other core values. I feel an incredible sense of urgency about the problems we are working to solve for children and families. We cannot and will not be afraid to take risks, speak hard truths and fail forward in pursuit of results for every child.