To donate to Josh, click here!!

Josh Carpenter, Ph.D., is the new Director of Economic Development for the City of Birmingham. Formerly, Josh was Director of External Affairs for University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) President, Ray Watts. 

At UAB, he spearheaded a city-wide partnership to secure $6 million to train disconnected youth for high-demand IT jobs. In 2014, Josh co-founded Bama Covered, a non-profit public health education initiative that trained and mobilized nearly 700 college students to engage in 100,000 conversations in the communities that surrounded their campuses. Due to its innovative approach in grassroots health education and student engagement, Bama Covered was featured in the New York Times, NPR, and NBC news among other national and local publications. Previously, Josh served as a White House intern and was a Teach for America corps member in Alabama’s inaugural corps. He taught English and theater, and coached football and baseball in Perry County, Alabama, where in 2012, he was named the state’s “Golden Apple Teacher of the Year.”

A Rhodes Scholar, Josh earned his M.Sc. in Comparative Social Policy and a D.Phil. in Politics at the University of Oxford, and he holds a B.S. in business from UAB. Josh is also an assistant professor in economics at UAB’s Collat School of Business and researches how job attainment alters notions of efficacy. He currently lives in Crestwood with his wife, Nicole and their dog, Truman. 

Why have you decided to serve as a Torchbearer for the JLB?
One Place provides a clear example of the good that can happen when key institutions come together to serve a common cause.  When someone experiences trauma, the last thing we should do is present them with a complicated set of options. One Place offers a team of experts and supportive partners to help families navigate the services they need at a time when they need it most. I believe One Place Birmingham is a vital resource for members of our community when they’re most vulnerable, and I am grateful to be able to support it.

What/who inspires you to be a Light in our community?
Isaac Newton once said, “if I have seen further than others, it is because I have stood on the shoulders of giants.” Birmingham is full of giants who have given of themselves to ensure that our community is strong. I am grateful to call many of those people friends and mentors and I feel fortunate to follow in their example.


To donate to Josh, click here!!