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Applications for the Delta Regional Authority’s (DRA) 2025 Delta Leadership Institute (DLI) Executive Academy are now open! DLI is an extensive nine-month leadership development program that brings together public, private and nonprofit sector leaders from the Mississippi River and Alabama Black Belt regions. Fellows are selected through a competitive application process led by DRA’s board of governors and federal co-chairman.

Applicants for the 2025 DLI Executive Academy must live or work in the 252 counties and parishes that encompass DRA’s region, as designated by the U.S. Congress. The DLI Executive Academy seeks applicants in traditional or nontraditional leadership roles within organizations, businesses or communities. DLI Executive Academy fellows must have previously worked on community-based projects that support economic and community development efforts on the local, regional or state level.

Those interested can apply through August 16, 2024, at Delta Leadership Institute – Delta Regional Authority (

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2025 Delta Leadership Institute Executive Academy Schedule

  • Session I: January 27 – 30, 2025 | Greenwood, Mississippi
  • Session II: March 3 – 6, 2025 | Paragould, Arkansas
  • Session III: April 28 – May 1, 2025 | Selma, Alabama
  • Session IV: June 16 – 19, 2025 | Washington, D.C.
  • Session V: July 28 – 31, 2025 | West Tennessee
  • Session VI: September 8 – 11, 2025 | New Orleans, Louisiana

About The Delta Regional Authority

The DRA was established in 2000 as a formal framework for joint federal-state collaboration to promote and encourage the economic development of the lower Mississippi River and Alabama Black Belt regions. To fulfill this purpose, DRA invests in projects supporting transportation infrastructure, basic public infrastructure, workforce training and business development. DRA’s region encompasses 252 counties and parishes in parts of Alabama, Arkansas, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri and Tennessee.