May 2023

Jeaneen Hooks elevated to Vice President of Programs at Columbus Urban League

Jeaneen Hooks is the Columbus Urban League’s new Vice President of Programs, where she will be responsible for creating, implementing and evaluating the initiatives that make CUL a vital, trusted advocate for racial equity, social justice and an inclusive economy.

Hooks has been with CUL since 2019, most recently serving as Associate Vice President and previously as Director of the Columbus Minority Business Assistance Center. She has overseen the efficacy of 27 CUL programs in the social mobility, economic mobility and career services areas—work that she will build upon in her new role.

“Jeaneen’s work within our organization over the past several years has been unparalleled and we’re excited to recognize, reward and further gain from this tremendous leader,” said Columbus Urban League President & CEO Stephanie Hightower. “We look for her to continue her great work and to ensure we raise up other leaders who will be critical for our long-term success.”

Hooks has more than 30 years of progressive business experience, building mutually beneficial business partnerships, leading highly effective teams, and delivering innovative strategies to promote accountability and awareness around performance management, diversity, and employee engagement.

Over the past year, CUL has set a base full-time starting salary of $50,000, added an innovative personal time off policy for those with a year or more of employment, brought in coaches for top leaders, invested in a new performance evaluation structure and started creating more career paths for staff members who excel.

“By gaining new unrestricted funding from entities such as the Columbus Foundation, in addition to two significant endowment gifts from MacKenzie Scott and the estate of Alexis Jacobs, we could finally invest in our people and our infrastructure to become an even greater best-practice, results-oriented organization,” Hightower said.

About The Columbus Urban League
The 105-year-old Columbus Urban League (CUL) is an advocate and resource for Black and urban communities that is dedicated to growing wealth, education, earning power and small businesses while also supporting strong families. Driven to advance racial equity and social justice, CUL has distinguished itself as an effective organization in numerous ways, including as one of only ten organizations to be selected for funding by One Million Black Women and by earning ranking as one of the top five percent of all 93 National Urban League affiliates. For more information, visit

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