South Bend – Elkhart Regional Partnership Welcomes Director of Education & Workforce


SOUTH BEND, Ind. (July 11, 2019) — The South Bend – Elkhart Regional Partnership is pleased to welcome Leighton Johnson as its Director of Education and Workforce, effective July 15th.

In this newly developed role, Johnson will lead the South Bend – Elkhart regional efforts in executing strategies focused around increasing the availability of work-ready talent for key industry sectors that will ultimately support company growth and lead to increased income levels for the region’s residents. He will work directly with the Regional Partnership’s Education and Workforce Committee to coordinate and implement key strategies and will serve as the primary point of contact.

Johnson is a workforce development and education policy professional who brings a diverse skill set from his past work with national organizations that are driving change in workforce and education systems to achieve economic prosperity, including the Dallas County Promise, Boston-based education and workforce group JFF, and The Boston Foundation. Leighton has also worked regionally as a consultant supporting business partnerships and adult apprenticeship programs with the Horizon Education Alliance.

“The South Bend – Elkhart Region must develop talent to meet industrial demand and ensure that economic drivers remain globally competitive and new industries can grow and scale,” said Regina Emberton, President and CEO of the South Bend – Elkhart Regional Partnership. “Leighton’s experience will be instrumental in driving regional efforts to build a supply of qualified, highly-skilled workers needed to sustain an innovation economy.”

Leighton is excited to return to his hometown region, as an Elkhart Central graduate, to help improve the outlooks of economic prosperity for students and adults. As a beneficiary of local/state initiatives such as Notre Dame Talent Search & 21st Century Scholars, Leighton brings a lifelong commitment to supporting the development and enhancement of education and workforce programs. In his free time, Leighton enjoys spending time with family and engaging in the community through various volunteer activities.

About South Bend – Elkhart Regional Partnership
The South Bend – Elkhart Regional Partnership is a collaboration of the economic development partners from 47 smart connected communities in Northern Indiana and Southwest Michigan. The Regional Partnership focuses on a long-term systemic approach to advance the region’s economy by aligning the efforts of various stakeholders around five key areas: Educating a world-class WORKFORCE, Recruiting and retaining great TALENT, Attracting and growing new economy companies in complement to our remarkably strong manufacturing INDUSTRIES, Promoting INCLUSION and sparking opportunities for minorities and Helping ENTREPRENEURS thrive. The Regional Partnership seeks to unify and collaborate so that together, the communities across the region to work together to achieve what cannot be done individually. For more information about the Regional Partnership, visit


Media Contact:
Regina Emberton
South Bend – Elkhart Regional Partnership
574.344.4686 ext. 4802