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Hear from our mentees and mentors

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Jamila Trimuel, Mentee

"The Next Level Exchange (NLE) program was a phenomenal experience. During the program, I was perfectly matched with Bruce Taylor. We worked on Board development, enhanced my fundraising documents, and he introduced me to key individuals within his network. As a result, my fundraising revenue increased by 78% and I became more confident about how to effectively communicate our value to the community.  I also built great relationships with the other NLE mentees.  Thank you Next Level Exchange!"

- Jamila M. Trimuel

Founder & CEO

Ladies of Virtue


Michael Fohrman, Mentor

Being a mentor to 3 dynamic, awe-inspiring entrepreneurs has been a life-changing experience. Knowing that my guidance and expertise has helped to make a difference in the progress and growth of their individual businesses, is beyond gratifying. NLE offers opportunities for young, hard-working, forward-thinking people to make a difference in their communities."

- Michael Fohrman

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Tiffany Hopkins, Mentee

Bret has been an invaluable mentor and has been there throughout this process to coach me through some sticking points as they come up. His financial knowledge has been a huge help and he’s been so flexible and giving of his time. Especially throughout the last couple of months, I’ve been especially thankful for his guidance. I’m open to other opportunities to connect with entrepreneurs that are in a similar industry or have taken a similar path. Learning from the successes and mistakes of others is invaluable and I’d love to connect with anyone that’s willing to share. Again, I appreciate the opportunities that NLE has presented and look forward to continuing to work with you going forward.

- Tiffany Hopkins
CEO, Shactee Engineering

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Craig Leva, Mentor

The mentoring experience I have had with NLE has been an extremely positive one for me.  Not only have I been able to use my experience, knowledge, and network to help a young, minority owned business, but the personal relationship that we built over time has been truly meaningful and impactful for both of us.  As a society, when thinking about how to help fix some of the inequities that exist between the northside and the southside, the real change occurs when people of various races, religions, and backgrounds can come together and truly understand each other.  NLE’s program allows everyone the opportunity to take a baby step in the right direction toward a less segregated City we all call home.

- Craig Leva

President/Owner, Arway Confections & Long Grove Confectionery

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