Thursday July 24, 2003
Mayor Jerry Abramson today announced that he has appointed Michael Gritton as executive director of KentuckianaWorks, the organization that coordinates workforce development efforts in the community.
Gritton, 41, has served in that capacity on an interim basis since last year. Previously, he served as director of the Office of Strategic Planning under former Mayor David Armstrong.
“Michael has a deep commitment to – and understanding of – public policy, particularly the importance of creating and retaining a highly skilled and educated workforce,” Abramson said. “I look forward to working with Michael as we try to help our community create a workforce that is able to successfully compete for more high-skill, good-paying jobs.”
KentuckianaWorks is charged with creating a workforce development system that benefits both employers and job seekers by promoting quality jobs, high skills, high wages and life-long learning. KentuckianaWorks is composed of community leaders appointed by the local elected officials in a seven-county area. Gritton’s appointment was formally announced during a meeting today of the KentuckianaWorks board.
Among other initiatives, KentuckianaWorks oversees one-stop career centers that provide services to employers and job seekers and the Louisville Youth Opportunity Network (LYON), a program providing opportunities to thousands of 14-21 year olds who live in Louisville’s Empowerment Zone. KentuckianaWorks is also a partner with Greater Louisville Inc. and others in GreaterLouisvilleWorks.com, an on-line workforce database for the 24-county labor market area. More than 36,000 job seekers and 850 businesses are registered on the site.
“I’m excited about the opportunities we have in Louisville Metro to create not only one of the biggest, but one of the best communities in America,” Gritton said. “One of the chief ways we will reach that goal is by working with both the public and private sectors to create a workforce with the skills and educational attainment levels necessary to secure high-paying jobs.”
Gritton grew up in the Pleasure Ridge Park area and graduated from Pleasure Ridge Park High School in 1980. He graduated from Duke University and the Columbia University School of Law.
Before returning to Louisville, Gritton was the co-founder and policy director of a nonpartisan think tank, The Massachusetts Institute for a New Commonwealth. The think tank focused its efforts on broadening and expanding the middle class.
As executive director at KentuckianaWorks, Gritton will oversee an $11.2 million budget and a staff of 17. His annual salary is $89,000.