The Leadership Incubator

A TRESemmé and Vital Voices Partnership

A signature program providing women in the United States with training, network expansion, mentorship and community to bring their bold vision for change to life

The Leadership Incubator

When it comes to leadership, gender equality has stalled. Yet we know that when women have the chance to lead, they make a profound positive impact on other women and the world.

Vital Voices and our partners at TRESemmé believe women should be equally seen and heard at all levels of society. That’s why TRESemmé is making a long-term commitment with Vital Voices to advocate for and invest in the next generation of women leaders.

With our partners at TRESemmé, Vital Voices is launching the Leadership Incubator, a signature program to provide women in the United States with training, network expansion, mentorship and community to bring their bold vision for change to life. Together, we aim to champion passionate women leaders who look to create a positive social impact in their communities and beyond, daring to achieve their ambitions despite the barriers they may face.

The year-long incubator program is a customized opportunity for women in the United States to substantially grow their leadership and technical capacity, networks, vision and impact. Participants will convene in New York, NY in October 2019 for a week-long, in-person program featuring leadership training, communications and storytelling workshops, community building and mentorship. Virtual training throughout the year will allow participants to build upon their action plan with the tools they need to turn their idea into reality. Participants will also be able to apply for small seed funding opportunities to help implement their projects.

The Leadership Incubator hopes to support women and those who identify as female (ages 20-35) in the United States who are at an early stage or tipping point in their leadership journey. Women who are committed to making a difference in their community and/or industry, creatively pursuing social impact, elevating the voices of and opportunities for others, and paying it forward should apply. Check out the FAQs below for more details about the program offerings and criteria.


This application is now closed.

Candidates will be notified in the coming months.


This program is hosted in partnership with:



Who is eligible for this fellowship?

Women and those who identify as female who are based in the United States and are between the ages of 20-35 at time of application. Exceptional candidates over 35 will also be considered. We do not exclude or discriminate based on citizenship status but we do stipulate that you are currently based in the United States. Students are eligible.

Who should apply? Who is this opportunity really meant for?

The Leadership Incubator appeals to women leaders of diverse industries and backgrounds looking to grow their skills and capacity in leadership, management and social impact; to build community with women from around the country; and to take their commitment to social change to the next level. Ideal applicants are:

  • Women with a cohesive, thoughtful, specific initiative or idea that is either currently operating or in the works, with a long-term vision.
  • Women who are existing, emerging or aspiring entrepreneurs, nonprofit leaders, community activists, business leaders or other leaders looking to incorporate a social mission into their work.
  • Women who are socially conscious and ready to seize their existing or planned vision for change and make it a reality.
  • Women who seek to challenge the status quo, create space and open doors for others, have a positive social impact in their communities and beyond, and who dare to achieve their ambitions despite the barriers they may face.

We know that real change is sparked by committed individuals with courageous ideas backed up by lived experiences.

What is required of me to participate?

The Leadership Incubator requires a mix of in-person and virtual participation in training activities throughout the program year. Participants must:

  • Be able to attend our in-person program from October 26-30, 2019 (plus travel time) in New York City (all expenses paid).
  • Commit to completing online training modules (an average of 6 hours per month), working to develop their project on their own time, and engaging with other participants through our online platform.
  • Work with the Vital Voices team to track your progress during and after the program, and to keep up to date on activities and communications.

Should you apply for and receive a project grant, you must also track your project results and complete a grant report. Full requirement details were outlined in the application.

If I’m a successful applicant, what will I get out of this experience?

You will receive customized training and coaching to help you grow your leadership skills and capacity, build new professional networks, have access to small project grants and opportunities for increased visibility, have exclusive access to our online training platform, learn from inspiring experts in related fields, have the support of a dedicated team of expert Vital Voices staff, and be part of a lifelong community of supportive peers and the broader Vital Voices Global Leadership Network.

Is there a fee to do this program?

There is no fee! This program is fully funded (thanks to our partners at TRESemmé!), including your travel and program participation for our in-person gathering.

How do I apply?

This application is now closed. Applicants will hear back about the program in the coming months.


Please contact Emily Goodman at with any questions about the program or applications.