by WJ on Aug 30, 2017 at 12:45 PM

The Little Rock Workforce Center (LRWFC) uses a demand driven concept, leveraging strategies like a Business Advisory Team (BAT) to enhance partnerships with local employers.

Business owners and industry leaders direct the decisions of the local workforce development system funded by the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA). BAT members make operational decisions regarding areas of focus in target industries and career pathways.

The members of the BAT also ensure that an Employer Toolbox is given to employers on initial contact.  This toolbox provides written information on all services available at the local Workforce Center through pamphlets, brochures, and business cards. The toolbox also educates employers on available incentives when hiring targeted populations through the Work Opportunity Tax Credit program, Federal Bonding programs, and On-the-Job Training (OJT) programs.

BAT Ambassadors coordinate job fairs and industry-specific events where employers can recruit and conduct on-site interviews at no cost to employers and job seekers. BAT hosts work closely with the Little Rock Chamber of Commerce and other economic and community development organizations to establish strong partnerships.  BAT members attend business after-hour networking events and stay connected with national and state Human Resource Associations.

The BAT was created in 2012, consisting of business service representatives from LRWFC partner agencies. Since then, the team has expanded its business outreach to serve the needs of local employers on a customized basis.

To learn more about local workforce development success stories, please visit


by WJ on Aug 17, 2017 at 11:14 AM

On August 10, 2017 staff from the Little Rock Workforce Development Board (LRWDB) and Arbor E&T hosted youth participants at a PROMISE Grant program celebration at Dave and Buster’s. Presentation of the Diane Tucker Outstanding Youth Award to Isaiah Scott and PROMISE Outstanding Leadership Awards – to Tevon Wren and Alaya Lewis– served as highlights of the celebration.

Of the 57 participants placed in employment, 30 completed all of the 200 allowable work hours and another 9 participants are expected to compelte 200 hours by September 30.

The PROMISE summer program resulted in many youth success stories, including:

Isaiah Scott, Little Rock, AR

Isaiah Scott epitomizes the type of determination that made him the first PROMISE participant to complete 200 hours during his summer work experience. He never missed a day of work and was always on time at the Ronald L. Davis Law Firm, where he gained valuable knowledge of the legal system. Isaiah's dedication to hard work helped him win the Diane Tucker Outstanding Youth Award for 2017.

Tevon Wren, 18, Little Rock, AR

Tevon completed his hours at the Little Rock Wastewater, where he was able to experience different aspects of the Wastewater business. Tevon really enjoyed his summer work experience  and has potential to be hired if a position that fits his interests becomes available. He is currently planning to attend Pulaski Technical College.

M’Ashunti Hood, 15, Little Rock, AR

Even though she started slightly after the start date, M’Ashunti was one of the first to have completed 200 hours of employment. Feedback from co-workers at the Family Development Center at Catherine’s House indicated that she was a pleasure to have at the work site. M’Ashunti has a strong work ethic and is heading in the right direction to be successful.

Alaya Lewis, 17, Little Rock, AR

Although shy at first, Alaya is a young lady with enthusiasm and compassion. She is a 17-year-old upcoming senior at Little Rock Central High School and cannot wait to enjoy chemistry…. books and boys alike. This year Alaya displayed her hard work and dedication during her work experience with the Sammie Gail Sanders Children’s Learning Center in North Little Rock. Her direct supervisor was very impressed with the work Alaya accomplished. Her goals this year are to: attain good grades, learn how to draft a resume, and apply for her first job.

Rodney Cooper, 178 Little Rock, AR

Rodney is no stranger to hard work. During the summer he not only participated in the PROMISE Work Experience but was already employed. Rodney unfortunately did not win one of the top awards but was recognized for a separate accomplishment. Rodney was employed with Big Rock Mini Golf and Fun Park this summer and was offered a position. Rodney is a graduate of Parkview High school and is currently enrolled at Pulaski Technical College. He is definitely A+mazing! 

The LRWDB began its partnership with the Arkansas PROMISE Grant consortium in January 2015 to operate a summer youth work experience program to run in concert with the Summer Youth Employment Program (SYEP).

PROMISE—Promoting Readiness of Minors in Supplemental Security Income—is a joint initiative of the Social Security Administration (SSA) and the U.S. Departments of Education (ED), Health and Human Services, and Labor. Arkansas was selected as one of six programs nationally to promote positive changes in education and employment outcomes for the target population. AR PROMISE provided innovative educational, vocational, and other services to youth SSI recipients, age 14 to 16, and their families.


by WJ on Aug 4, 2017 at 8:13 AM

On Tuesday, June 27th, the U.S. Department of Labor announced over $72M to enhance employment opportunities for justice-involved individuals. $32M was awarded to 23 community based organizations across the United States, including the Little Rock Workforce Development Board, which was awarded $1.2M to develop the “Rock City Reentry Project.” 

Mayor Mark Stodola highlighted the Rock City Reentry Project as part of the City’s Little Rock for Life campaign that was announced during a press conference on July 20, 2017.

Arkansas has one of the fastest growing prison populations in the country, largely due to its high rate of recidivism. The Rock City Reentry Project represents a significant response to this problem in our state: the creation of a dynamic, robust, and tightly coordinated network of services and training sites to equip 150 adults with the skills, resources, and confidence to obtain long-term, meaningful employment and gain stability in the free world.

Service hubs will be located at the Our House Career Center, Goodwill Industries of Arkansas, and the Little Rock Workforce Center.

For more information contact:

W.J. Monagle

Executive Director, Little Rock Workforce Development Board