Consideration Without Pity: Leading with Empathy in a Post-Pandemic World


  • Tasha Johnson YMCA of the USA



after-school, out-of-school time, empathy, standards, youth development


This commentary provides thought leadership on employing empathy authentically in a post-pandemic world. Dr. Johnson makes the case for empathy leaders to adopt a perspective of "consideration without pity," a relational instructional strategy that expects youth development professionals to meet youth where they are yet hold each other accountable for set goals and objectives—academic and otherwise. Recommendations for practice and training are included as examples of explicit practices to cultivate a culture and ecosystem of high-quality youth development.

Author Biography

Tasha Johnson, YMCA of the USA

Tasha Franklin Johnson, Ph.D., is Senior Director of Equity In Youth Development at YMCA of the USA. Dr. Johnson is a highly competent, results focused leader with a portfolio of strategic leadership in academic achievement and educational reform outcomes. Dr. Johnson has a bachelor’s degrees in Organizational Behavior and Business Policy and African American Studies from Southern Methodist University; a master’s degree in Education with a specialty in Administration, Planning, and Social Policy from Harvard University; and a Ph.D. in Early Childhood Elementary Education from New York University. 


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Thought Leader Commentary