Developing Great Community Leaders

Laura Thomas - August 2016

Since the beginning of leadership programs at the Volunteer Center in 2011, over 250 people have gone through at least one of the three programs – Emerging Leaders, High Performing Teams, and Volunteer Manager Leaders.

Laura Thomas is one of those leaders. In 2014, she participated in Emerging Leaders, and last year received the James Gorsuch Scholarship for the High Performing Teams program.

“It seems to be exactly what I need, when I need it,” Laura said. “It ignites a sense of value and worth in me that I deeply appreciate.”

In 2015, she sought out advice from two of our staffers on how to create program assessments and evaluations. Why? Because she had just turned in a proposal for a new job description to her employer. The proposal suggested creating a new position focused on assessing the needs and wants of the company’s clients and developing better programming based on the results.

For Laura, this new position would allow her to better utilize her leadership attributes, motivations, and interests. The new role could also revolutionize her industry as a whole. In her research, Laura came across only two other organizations with positions similar to the one she wants to create. So Laura started on a mission to change the culture of her business.

Although she has yet to achieve her goal, Laura is on the road. It is our joy to watch her progress and help in the process as she engages in High Performing Teams II this year.

“I am elated that I got involved when I did,” Laura said, “and I am most appreciative that you all have supported me through many of the Volunteer Center programs.”

With each new year of leadership programs, we hope to see individuals learn to lead from where they are in life. These are the leaders who make our community great, the ones who inspire community engagement on the South Plains.

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