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Young Professionals Initiative

YPs are business professionals and corporate leaders between ages 21 and 40. They are motivated, educated and community-conscious individuals.
They work hard, play hard, and make a difference in their community.


YPI is designed to create a network of community leaders under the age of 40 in efforts to enhance the development of Northwest Louisiana for attraction and retention of young professionals.


Being a part of YPI, provides networking and education opportunities, awareness for you and your business, and a platform for you to make a difference in the community.


Quarterly Lunch & Learns
These events provide an opportunity for members and guests to gather to hear speakers of interest to the community. The learning environment and fellowship provide an engaging environment to develop friendships and foster common interests.

Monthly YPI Socials offer casual after hours networking and social opportunities for young professionals at unique venues across the Shreveport-Bossier region. Don’t forget your business cards!

40 Under Forty Awards
The 40 Under Forty Awards profile Northwest Louisiana’s outstanding entrepreneurs, executives, managers, and professionals in public, private, or non-profit sectors. Winners are chosen based on such values as achievement, experience and innovation, vision, leadership, and community involvement.

The 40 Under Forty Awards Gala is held each December. The awards ceremony is the signature event of the Young Professionals Initiative and is presented by The Forum.

Click Here for a list of Past 40 Under Forty Honorees

YPI also recognizes a Philanthropy of the Year. Click here for more information about the Philanthropy of the Year program.


– Chair –
Cheradee Williams
Linwood Public Charter School

– 40 Under 40 Chair –
Dr. Kenya Roberts
Caddo Parish Schools

– Communications Chair –
Dellanee Wade
Southern University at Shreveport

– Community Outreach Chair –
Michelle Anthony
Girl Scouts of Louisiana

​- Professional Development Chair –
Candice Ratliff

– Social Chair –
Cody Grosshart
Perkins & Associates, LLC

– Secretary –
Anthony Oden

– Vice Chairman –
Carly Koen
United Way

​- 40 Under 40 Co-Chair –
Elizabeth Crews
Shreveport-Bossier Convention & Tourism Bureau

– Communications Co-Chair –
Toye Mosley
Harper Law Firm

– Community Outreach Co-Chair –
LaTonya Mister
SOW & REAP Physical Therapy, LLC

​- Professional Development Co-Chair –
Meagan McDuffy
Centerpoint Energy

– Social Co-Chair –
Craig McCloud
Arthur J. Gallagher

​- Secretary Co-Chair –
Lovee Pinson
HealthCARE Express

– Immediate Past Chair-
Jana Freeman Forrest
BOM Bank

Members at Large:

    • Claire Childs Bowers, Vintage Realty Company
    • Kimberly Stephens, Red Ball Oxygen
    • Logan Lewis, Independance Bowl
    • Marie Johnson-Watts, Elle Foundation
    • Renisha Sanders, Cardinaux Wealth Advisors