The ATXelerator was founded in 2017 to encourage civic leaders and voters to support big ideas to move this city boldly into the future.
Austin has now transitioned from a medium-sized city largely focused on a public-sector economy to the 11th largest U.S. city with a bustling global tech and innovation-based ecosystem. The secret’s out, and for us to hold on to the spark that brought us here, it’s critical that we plan for the future in a sustainable manner.
Our vision is an inclusive community that provides opportunity for all its citizens. To make this vision a reality, we identify and prepare future-focused leaders through our innovative ATXelerator program and guide them toward public service. We also educate and support civic leaders and the public about policy solutions that position Austin for future success.
With an advisory board of former Austin mayors, council members and other community leaders, the ATXelerator has one main constituent: the future. It’s our responsibility to take action today that prepares our region for tomorrow so that all — current and future residents — can benefit from the promise of Central Texas.
The ATXelerator is an innovative and unique program that recruits and trains community leaders interested in advocating for future-focused city policy, serving on a city board or commission or, in some instances, running for city council.
Similar to a tech accelerator, the three-month program trains class members on the nuts and bolts of city government, matches each member of the 25-person cohort with a mentor — most of whom are current or former elected officials — and ends with a competition, known as The Pitch, which enables each participant to put forward a policy platform that they would advocate in a hypothetical race.
Nine Pitch finalists compete in a live, public event known as the ATXL Games before a panel of expert judges, resulting in gold, silver and bronze medal winners. Topics covered during the immersive opening and closing weekend retreats and the 90-minute weekly education sessions include transportation, public safety, land use, diversity & social equity, economic development, homelessness, city finances, utilities, media training, and how to run a campaign, among many others.
Apply here for the class of 2021. The application deadline is December 7, 2020.
The ATXelerator is a 501 (c)(3) charitable nonprofit corporation.