Jil has been breaking barriers and charting her own path from a young age. A product of inner city Atlanta, Littlejohn’s mother was her biggest cheerleader, telling her, “You can do anything you dream.” Her father, a retired manufacturing supervisor, believed in her and sacrificed so she could attend college. Littlejohn used the encouragement and her interest in multi-cultural issues to move to Spain to study at the Universidad de Seville in Seville, Spain for undergraduate training in Cross Cultural Communications. Jil became fluent in Spanish and traveled throughout Europe and went on to earn a Bachelor of Arts degree in Intercultural Business at Wofford College. She eventually went on to earn an MBA from Webster University after working for Milliken & Company as a plant accountant and plant controller. Littlejohn credits her time at Milliken & Company for helping her think outside the box and develop her leadership skills through extensive training and professional development.
Once Littlejohn decided to make Greenville, South Carolina her home, she recruited her parents and brother to move to the city. But she didn’t stop there, she began volunteering and eventually changed careers to become the Executive Director of the YWCA of Greenville, where she worked to develop the leadership skills of women and girls in the Upstate. This role helped her realize that she needed to have a seat at the table when the decisions where made, so Jil decided to run for office. In 2009, Jil Littlejohn became the youngest member of the Greenville City Council, one of two minorities on the council and currently serves as Mayor Pro Tem. Realizing there was a gap in young leadership in Greenville, Jil founded the Talented Tenth Greenville Leadership Conference; the organization’s goal is to connect young minority professionals with established business and civic leaders across the Southeast.
Ever evolving and breaking barriers, Jil Littlejohn became the first female President and CEO of the Urban League of the Upstate in 2015; the organization has been empowering and changing the lives of the Greenville community for over 40 years. However, working at the Urban League seemed like a natural progression, Jil had previously served as the Treasurer for the National Urban League Young Professionals (NULYP) and as the Southern Regional Vice President for NULYP.
Littlejohn has been recognized by Greenville Magazine as one of the 50 Most Influential People, Ebony Magazine Top Young Leaders Under 30, a Women Making History Honoree, Greenville’s Best and Brightest under 35 and was awarded the Public Servant of the Year Award by the Salvation Army Boys and Girls Club.
A dynamic leader, Jil has graduated from Greenville, Spartanburg and South Carolina Leadership programs, Yale University’s Women’s Campaign School and has earned a Dale Carnegie Public Speaking Certification.
Jil loves traveling and has visited 30 countries. She loves to talk and she’s studied both Spanish and Japanese. Her favorite foods are seafood and Ben & Jerry's Chocolate Cookie Dough Ice Cream. She also enjoys adventure sports. Jil doesn’t meet strangers, only friends she hasn't met.