Created in 2015 as a partnership between the Middle Georgia Regional Commission and the University of Georgia J.W. Fanning Institute for Leadership Development, a unit of UGA Public Service and Outreach, the Middle Georgia Regional Leadership Champions program has set out to build a network of people with the leadership skills and understanding to work across geographic boundaries to build a stronger middle Georgia.

As a participant in the 2020 Middle Georgia Regional Leadership Champions program, Jonathan Pitts and his classmates learned how poverty affected the 11 counties around Macon that make up the Middle Georgia Regional Commission.

“Several of us felt like we had an opportunity to do something on a regional level to try and tackle this issue,” said Pitts, a Jones County resident who chairs the JACOR Foundation, which is focused on increasing financial literacy education and awareness. “We decided to start a financial literacy program for youth.”

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