Each year a diverse group of people from the Independence community take part in this program, and each year they create a cohesive network, in which every person is encouraged to learn, share and grow.
L.E.A.D. Independence was one of the first leadership programs developed in Eastern Jackson County.
"I’ve discovered my purpose is to make a positive difference in the lives of others. Participation in the Independence Chamber LEAD class of 2016 complimented my purpose. The connections and exposure to the Independence community were enriching."
-Shelia Williams, DWD Workforce Coordinator, L.E.A.D. Class of 2016-
Developed by the Independence Chamber of Commerce, L.E.A.D. Independence aims to provide a network of informed leaders with a commitment to the continued growth and development of our City. L.E.A.D. Independence provides a road map for successful community involvement through interaction with key community leaders and the issues that make Independence distinctive.
Selected candidates make a commitment to participate in a structured nine-month program.
In September, the class gathers for an orientation team-building retreat. October through May, the class meets on the third Thursday of each month for an eight-hour session.
Class members form task forces to explore a variety of timely issues. Issues for discussion have included such topics as education, health care, government, tourism, social services and economic development.
The task forces research their subjects and present information to the class through guest speakers, tours, panel discussions, informal question-and-answer sessions and on-site visitations. A variety of community leaders and experts are invited to participate in these sessions. Each task force is challenged to devise innovative programs on their subject.
Everyone! The community, the candidate and sponsoring organizations.
“The leadership potential of L.E.A.D. graduates sharing and caring throughout this community is…Wow!
-Nancy Kimak, Kimak’s Pest Control-
The end of the program is just beginning for the participants. L.E.A.D. graduates are positioned to easily transitioned into becoming active in the community - and are encouraged to do so.
The Alumni Association provides educational and social opportunities for participants to continue to meet. Alumni also assist in planning future L.E.A.D. programs.
In its 28-year existence, the program has graduated more than 572 individuals. Many graduates have made significant contributions to our community in a variety of leadership roles and have remained in contact with their classmates.
|Alicia Nelson||City of Independence|
|Ashton Barker||CommunityAmerica Credit Union|
|Beth Franklin||Keller Williams Southland Partners|
|Betsy Waldman||Northwest Communities Development Corporation|
|Bridgette Casey||Truman Medical Center/Jackson County Health Dept.|
|Dee Weller||Blue Ridge Bank and Trust|
|Devin Hartley||Trabon Managed Services|
|Drew Hammer||Edward Jones|
|James Allison||Orbital ATK|
|Jeff McLaughlin||Corporate CopyPrint|
|Jenny Turner||The Arc of the Ozarks|
|Katie Early||Mother's Refuge|
|Kimberly Abbs Riley||Stewart Title Company|
|Kris Zerr||Independence Chamber of Commerce|
|LaDon Gramling||Speaks Family Legacy Chapels|
|Lisa Moorhouse||Drumm Farm Center for Children|
|Marge Padgitt||Three Trails Cottages LLC|
|Rebecca Conrad-Brown||Fort Osage Career & Technology Center|
|Ryan Fowler||Orbital ATK|
|Sarah Carnes-Lemp||City of Independence|
|Seth Bosch||City of Independence Police|
|Tom Woodward||RBC Wealth Management|
|Carrie Randle||Comprehensive Mental Health Services|
|Hap Graff||Independence Chamber|
|Jeremy Nuckols||American Medical Response|
|Jodi Krantz||Independence Economic Development Council|
|Kelsie Fell||Truman Medical Centers|
|Laurie Dean Wiley||Waddell & Reed|
|Lynette Wheeler||Truman Medical Centers|
|Mark Carrick||Independence Fire Department|
|Mary Kay Altiz||Independence Power & Light|
|Pat Farrell||Sibley Orchards|
|Rebecca Higgs||American Medical Response|
|Stephanie Smith||Fort Osage School District|
|Steve Patton||Independence Chamber|
|Trina Anderson||Independence Chamber|