Martindale-Brightwood CDC’s Barrett Named Innovator of the Year at YAS Summit | EmployIndy

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Martindale-Brightwood CDC’s Barrett Named Innovator of the Year at YAS Summit

Posted on November 24th, 2021 in Local News, Success Story

The Indiana Department of Workforce Development (DWD) holds the Young Adult Services (YAS) Summit annually to facilitate collaboration amongst youth service practitioners throughout the state. From workforce development to career engagement to educational accessibility, the YAS Summit presents an integral opportunity for service providers to align on best practices, develop ongoing strategies, and recognize successes each year. 

At this year’s YAS Summit, the Indiana DWD recognized Julie Barrett, Workforce Development Program Manager at the Martindale-Brightwood Community Development Corporation (MBCDC), as the Innovator of the Year for creative programming in support of Young Adult Services. 

Barrett was selected amongst the entirety of YES Indy’s Career Navigators to receive this award, remaining as one of the top Career Navigators in Indiana who serve the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act’s (WIOA) youth population. Her exemplary leadership has enhanced the scope of available services offered to Marion County’s young people, and her unwavering commitment to serving Hoosier youth continues to change countless lives across our community. 

“Julie’s passion, encouragement, and guidance help her build the trusting relationships that are important to improve the trajectory of young people’s lives. She coaches, she models, she cares; she provides tough love, and she gets results,” says Dionne Smith, Vice President, Neighborhood at EmployIndy. “Julie has helped numerous Opportunity Youth reach their own definitions of success, all because she believes in them and helps them believe in themselves.”

Martindale-Brightwood CDC has been very successful as the employer of record for the Disaster Recovery Grant. In this capacity, Julie Barrett and her team have placed nine WIOA Youth in promising jobs, servicing a community severely impacted by COVID-19. The Martindale-Brightwood CDC team is the only mobile WIOA program provider in Central Indiana. With an innovative delivery system, MBCDC is able to provide YES Indy services that are tailored to each individual they serve.

As a mobile provider, MBCDC is able to uniquely impact Opportunity Youth– people ages 16-24 who have become disconnected from school and/or work– with the support they need wherever their location might be. As a result, Barrett and her team receive all of the referrals from the DWD’s youth Department of Correction (DOC), all of Outreach Indiana referrals for young people experiencing homelessness, and all of the Jobs for America’s Graduates (JAG) referrals for youth who do not graduate from High School. Barrett and her team work with Youth Build Indy to enroll those participants in WIOA programming as well. 

“Julie is an all-star service provider and an invaluable asset to Marion County’s Opportunity Youth as well as our community as a whole,” says Charlie Harris, Director, Opportunity Youth at EmployIndy. 

EmployIndy thanks Julie Barrett for her unwavering passion and dedication in serving Marion County’s young people. Her award is undoubtedly well-deserved. Congratulations on being honored as the YAS Innovator of the Year!