Transforming the community — one leader at a time

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Leadership Lehigh Valley has been serving the community for three decades by providing men and women with the opportunity to develop their personal community leadership skills and to gain the basic knowledge necessary for effective volunteer leadership.

Through its community leadership development program, participants broaden their view of the community and the opportunities they have to focus their skills and efforts on issues that matter to the community and to them.

LLV’s primary program objectives are:

• To increase awareness and appreciation of the region’s strengths and opportunities.

• To develop personal leadership skills through related activities.

• To prepare emerging leaders for their role in nonprofit governance and board membership.

Leadership Lehigh Valley is a private, nonsectarian, not-for-profit organization which began as an initiative of Leadership Bethlehem in 1985 to address the community’s growing need for volunteer leaders. Recognizing the value and potential of the program to advance the region, the founders and affiliated community leaders of the program facilitated the organization’s move to become the expanded independent regional program that Leadership Lehigh Valley is today.

Participants in the LLV program examine the challenges facing the region, network with a diverse intergenerational group of peers and community leaders and cultivate personal and organizational skills. They gain valuable knowledge and appreciation of regional assets and learn how they can have an impact on issues that matter to them.

Many sponsors view the Leadership Lehigh Valley program as an excellent opportunity to develop and recognize high-potential people in an organization.

LLV graduates serve as leaders on a broad spectrum of the region’s nonprofit boards, providing direction and governance, financial oversight and philanthropic support to organizations that represent the best in health care, education, social services, environmental and arts organizations.

Leadership Lehigh Valley graduates serve on the boards of organizations such as the American Red Cross of the Greater Lehigh Valley, Greater Lehigh Valley Chamber of Commerce, Meals on Wheels, Volunteer Center of the Lehigh Valley, Turning Point, Lehigh Valley Arts Council and many more.

LLV graduates are personally invested in the success of the community and represent the more than 350 Lehigh Valley civic-minded companies and organizations that have sponsored their participation. Including this year’s class, there have been 900 graduates of Leadership Lehigh Valley.

After an extensive strategic planning initiative, Leadership Lehigh Valley’s board decided to transfer ownership of the program to Northampton Community College, effective next month, in order to enhance the program’s long-term success.

The LLV program will become part of NCC’s Leadership and Executive Development initiative under the college’s Center for Business and Industry. In accepting the program, NCC said it fully intends to sustain LLV’s mission to enable effective community leaders to transform the region.

“As a college of the community, we welcome the opportunity to build on the great work of the Leadership Lehigh Valley board and look forward to training the future leaders of our community,” said Mark Erickson, Northampton president.

In taking this course of action, Leadership Lehigh Valley is well positioned to continue to fulfill its mission to transform the region, one leader at a time.

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