“Centene Corporation has been an avid supporter and sponsor of CLD since inception, and we are incredibly honored and that Centene perceives the value of our program and supports our participants,” said Sharilyn D. Franklin, Ph.D, executive director of CLD. “I also have to extend my deepest appreciation to Keith Williamson, who has been instrumental in the overall success of CLD.” Centene Corporation opened the doors of its Clayton campus and displayed the company’s commitment to community, diversity, and individual growth & development. The Chairman and CEO, Michael Neidorff, made an appearance and surprised everyone in the group by diverting from prepared remarks in favor of getting to know each CLD participant. Upon the completion of Neidroff’s informative and heartfelt session, the well-known philanthropist and chairman of the National Urban League, escorted participants on a tour, complete with private discussions in his sitting room. In addition to the warm welcome from Neidorff, other executives, Keith Williamson, EVP, Secretary and General Counsel; Cindy Brinkley, EVP of International Operations; and Karen Bedell, Chief Diversity Officer, delivered riveting presentations with the aim of empowering the confidence, competence, and charisma of CLD participants. CLD meets once per month to explore business concepts taught by an impressive roster of business leaders. Each module takes place at a local corporation where at least two phenomenally accomplished leaders impart their wisdom on how to successfully navigate the leadership ranks. During each module, David Price, former Monsanto executive and CLD Architect, reviews the importance of lifting expectations and delivering exceptional results to CLD’s participants. The current class of CLD, which launched in December 2014, represents the program’s third cohort. Previous cohort members remain actively involved as alumni. CLD encourages and empowers excellence in leadership, and over 60% of CLD participants have earned job promotions as a result of instruction received from the program. As a founder of Fuse Advertising, Dr. Franklin is no stranger to thriving in business, and she exudes confidence as an unstoppable force of nature as she motivates her “CLD babies” with positive reinforcement mixed with a little tough love, served with an “I know you can do it” message and a glowing smile.