Independent School District 196

Last year we were approached by Mr. Tazel to see if we would be interested in developing a partnership with the Tazel Institute for the benefit of creating a professional networking and workplace connection program for some of our high school African American male students. We began the program on a trial basis including one of our high schools. The program provides opportunities for students to interact with businesses and government services in the interest of enabling our students to interact with businesses and government services in the interest of enabling our students to see a connection to their possible future while interacting with professionals who are actually working in a professional capacity. In doing so, the students spend about a day every six weeks visiting the businesses and government services to learn about the industry, work involved, qualififcations and prospects for the future. Students spend a great deal of time delving into what attributes are necessary for a person to enter the profession in these businesses and government services. 

Mark Parr, Ph.D. 

Director of Secondary Education

City of Apple Valley Police Department 

I was introduced to Mr. Leon Tazel in 2014 when I joined a small group of professionals who were organizing a mentoring program focusing on providing positive role models and opportunities for African American teens. As with any group, certain individuals always come to the forefront with their passion and commitment. 

Jon Rechtzigel

Chief of Police

Minneapolis Central Library 

Mr. Tazel and his colleagues support young African-American men in developing positive peer relationships, reaching educational success and connecting with mentors in the world of work. His goal is to ensure that young men learn about the many options they have in life and see others like themselves who are successful in business, entrepreneurship, and careers of all kinds. 

Bernie Farrell

Coordinator, Youth Programs and Services

University of Minnesota, Office for Equity and Diversity

On behalf of the University of Minnesota, Office for Equity and Diversity, I would like to congratulate the Tazel Institute for its outstanding work with diverse young men. The University of Minnesota was honored to host more than 80 young men here for a recent campus visit. These engaged students were exposed to a number of diverse university leaders and they were able to converse with these leaders and learn more about their pathways to success.

Shakeer Abdullah, Ph.D. 

Assistant Vice President, Office for Equity and Diversity 



Hennepin County Courts

I wanted to formally extend my thanks to you for bringing the young African American men to our court last week. It is a hopeful sign that people like you take an interest in pointing young people in a good direction. Much appreciation to you and The Tazel Institute. 

Ivy S. Bernhardson

Fourth District, Chief Justice