Biography

Lorenza M. Wilkins is a dedicated advocate of youth empowerment and community development. As a member of Biltmore's Who is Who Among American Executives and Professionals, over the past 20 years, he has served in the career training, learning & development, and career progression for thousands of adults and youth across the United States. This, in part, accomplished at fortune 250 corporation CSX Transportation and includes time spent with Clemson University's South Carolina Coalition for Mathematics and Science under the tutelage of Dr. Tom Peters.

For over a decade, Wilkins continues to serve as President & CEO of Compass Youth Center, a registered 501 (c) (3) founded in 2009 to improve all communities' educational, social, and economic impact. While serving over 500 students in 10 North Carolina counties, Wilkins leverages the importance of introducing STEM education to underserved youth in k-12 through sports and basketball alongside the professional basketball organization, the Raleigh Firebirds.

Also, Wilkins has volunteered with the Shriner's Hospitals, American Red Cross, United Way, The Inter-Faith Food Shuttle, The Bridges of Northeast Florida, and the Food Bank of America. As a former student-athlete (basketball) and former member of the North Carolina Central University School of Business' 3.0 Club, he holds a BSBA and MBA from Columbia Southern University (Summa Cum Laude). He is currently pursuing a Doctorate in Business Administration with a focus on Project Based Research. While being an avid supporter and spokesperson for heightened awareness surrounding STEM education, Wilkins has also received special recognition from the Southern Poverty Law Center. As a 2018 participant in the National Opportunity Youth Forum hosted by the Aspen Institute (Aspen CO), Wilkins is forever committed to philanthropy and service to the common good of all humanity.

In January of 2016, Wilkins received induction into the National Society of Leadership and Success. "Raising student achievement and STEM literacy are both common denominators in preparing our young people to compete in an evolving 21st Century global marketplace, said Wilkins". With strong ties to the Durham community and deep roots in Eastern North Carolina, Compass Youth Center partners with higher learning institutions. This includes Duke University's Innovation & Entrepreneurship group, NCCU BRITE, Imhotep Academy (North Carolina State University), Josephine Dobbs Clement Early College, and a host of other North Carolina youth-serving entities.
Additionally, Wilkins served with the Triangle Literacy Council, located in Research Triangle Park, and supported Vance County Schools in a reading literacy expansion project funded by the North Carolina General Assembly in 2016-17.

Finally, Wilkins is a Leadership Triangle graduate, a leadership capacity building program designed to promote regionalism across Chatham, Orange, and Wake Counties. Most recently, Wilkins served as Senior Director of Programs and Operations at Made in Durham. A public-private partnership formed to create, sustain, and enhance the education-to-career pathway for thousands of youth in Durham, NC.

As Executive Director of Rebound, Alternatives for Youth, Wilkins helps address the detrimental impact that out-of-school suspensions have on youth through the delivery of evidence-based models of restorative practices, motivational interviewing, and trauma-informed care.
Wilkins' philosophy is threefold, with emphasis on Empowerment. Engagement and Equity.