Embrace The Lead

Akwi Nji smiling and looking at the camera
Artist Name

Akwi Nji and Kal Nalls

Artist Info


Project Sponsor(s)

Marshalltown Community School District

Installation Date

September 2023

Project Category
  • Arts + Culture Experiences

Embrace The Lead

In partnership with Marshalltown Community School District (MCSD), we are thrilled to reveal the “Embrace the Lead” video. This project is a result of the City of Marshalltown’s Arts & Culture Master Plan. The plan focuses on community engagement and connectedness, while prioritizing a creative approach that makes Marshalltown unique, distinct and authentically reflect our residents. One of the five placemaking themes in the plan is Elevate Youth. As we know, young people are the future of our community. When we open doors and give them the tools, resources, and support they need to thrive creatively, there are no boundaries to what they can achieve. That’s the moment when passive participation becomes active engagement and produces the creative entrepreneurs of tomorrow.

Click Here to watch the video! 

Iowa artist, Akwi Nji, took the lead in creating a brand video with a unique approach to storytelling and highlighted the strengths and points of pride of MCSD. Nji made several visits to Marshalltown to learn about the community and speak with Bobcat representatives, including current students, community members, alumni and district administrators. Each voice has played a role in shaping the final product of the Embrace the Lead video.

“Marshalltown as a community and district is a remarkable blend of cultures and values that simultaneously honor tradition while sparking future-thinking innovation. We really wanted that to shine through in this project as well as the hometown humility that is an amazing part of Marshalltown’s personality,” said Nji. “This project is designed to be just the beginning of a new way for Marshalltown to claim how amazing it is and tell its story vividly and powerfully. My creative partner Kal Nalls and I are so honored to have been able to collaborate with the Alliance and the MCSD staff and students to amplify the district’s brand story in this unique way.”

The Embrace the Lead video is a unique and innovative approach to inspire, amplify and elevate the MCSD, while increasing school and community pride. It highlights what it means to be a Bobcat and the talents of our students and staff. Community members will see a range of students, staff, and activities featured in the project. Also, the history and points of pride of the district will be shared in the video as well. MCSD and Arts + Culture Alliance believes that the Embrace the Lead project captures the story of the Marshalltown school system and community and instills a refreshed sense of pride. Bobcat pride and Marshalltown community pride are deeply connected and it is showcased in this video.

Click Here to watch the video! 



Together, with your support, we can create opportunities for a thriving and vibrant community. Make a 100% tax deductible donation* online today.

*The Arts + Culture Alliance is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. Your contribution is tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law. If you have any questions, please contact us.