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Notes from a gsLEAD Emerging Leader

Mar 4, 2011

Six months ago I attended my first gsLEAD class, along with nine other young professionals, eager to learn how we can make a difference through our involvement with local non-profits. On February 1st we became gsLEAD Class I graduates. I feel privileged to have been a part of this class and am eager to see the program evolve.

The goal of this unique leadership class is to prepare young professionals to successfully serve on boards or committees. We not only learned the responsibilities of board members, but also what to look for and what questions to ask before accepting a board position. This was accomplished partly through lecture and partly through interactive exercises. In addition to our class time, we were required to attend board meetings on our own time to get a true understanding of what board meetings are really like.

The class has also opened the door of many non-profits to us. Several non-profits were approached about accepting class members at their board meetings. As word about gsLEAD spread, the list of these organizations has grown.

While I have not found the board for me yet, I feel confident that once I do find the right organization, I will be more than prepared to serve on that board. I have also started new friendships that I hope will grow over time. I look forward to serving on boards and/or committees with them in the future.

Guiding us along the way, we could not have asked for more knowledgeable teachers than Jonathan Kresken, of the Waccamaw Community Foundation, and Cookie Sprouse, of the Chapin Foundation. They gave so much of their time to prepare for and teach this class. Additionally, Blakely Jenkins, Shannon Detzler and Heather Orr put a lot of work into making this program a success. Thanks to all of you.

Information about gsLEAD Class II will be available on the gsSCENE website.

Submitted by Gladys Velasco