Written by Erica Davis, CNP
Reading Time: 2 minutes

Like many other Kansas City residents, we are sad to see the Kansas City Chiefs be knocked out of their historical playoff run. But, this one hits a little closer to home for us at the Nonprofit Leadership Alliance. Why you might ask? Because of our founder, Harold Roe Bartle! Popularly referred to as “The Chief” (and namesake of the Kansas City Chiefs), Bartle was a former two-term Kansas City mayor and one of the region’s most impactful youth leaders and public figures in Kansas City’s history. 

Roe Bartle was called “Chief” long before he ran the city. Bartle founded the Nonprofit Leadership Alliance in 1948 as American Humanics. Known nationally for his impressive gift for engaging crowds with his sharp wit and booming voice, Bartle was a social entrepreneur, American businessman and philanthropist. Bartle seemed determined to participate in making the world better, accepting as many as thirty appointments to philanthropic boards and commissions. Following this, Bartle gained the nickname, “The Chief.” According to the team’s history, owner Lamar Hunt went with the name “Chiefs” to honor our founder H. Roe Bartle. 

Bartle saw a significant deficit in nonprofit leadership. The impending influx of youth program participants would demand hiring numerous qualified nonprofit staff members. His response to this employment gap was to build a hands-on training ground that would be housed on college campuses. Bartle’s vision lives today in the Alliance: the largest network in the country working to build a pipeline of talented and prepared professionals.

His legacy has ignited the passion of the Alliance for over 70 years. We are proud to have a founder so passionate about building our sector’s workforce and we are excited to continue to lead by his example.

Everyone at the Nonprofit Leadership Alliance is proud to be a part of the Kansas City Chiefs’ story. Here’s to next year!

About the Author

Erica Davis, CNP

Solutions Consultant, Nonprofit Leadership Alliance

Throughout her career Erica has devoted time to serving families, building communities, supporting fundraising efforts and enhancing relationships. When Erica is not working she is engaged in numerous activities within her community. She is passionate about supporting Youth Development Programs, Homeless Shelters, Mental Health and Lupus Awareness.