Valley Leadership
September Newsletter

Valley Leadership Alumni, Donors and Partners,

The Board of Directors is thrilled to announce that we have found our next leader! After a extensive, community-wide search, the Board has hired David C. Brown as the organization’s President and CEO. David joins the organization after previously serving as CEO of Home Matters and Executive Director of the National NeighborWorks® Association (NNA).

The Board was impressed with his vision for VL and his passion about our great state! He grew up in the Valley and now makes Phoenix his home with his wife and two children.

David will begin his tenure at VL in mid-September and looks forward to meeting and learning from each of you as he digs into his new role. Please join me in extending a warm VL welcome to David

Learn more about David via the press release, available on VL’s website.

Onward,

Sarah Krahenbuhl

Board Chair

Executive Director, Phoenix Suns Charities

Valley Leadership
July Newsletter

Hey Valley Leadership Family!

I’m Sarah Krahenbul, the incoming 2017-2018 Valley Leadership Board Chair. For those of you I don’t already have the pleasure of knowing, I am Class 32 (best class ever, of course), and serve as Executive Director of Phoenix Suns Charities. I have spent 15 years in sports philanthropy, so I hope you appreciate my sports references (it’s what I know best!)

This next fiscal year promises to be a winning season for Valley Leadership. Class 39 is an incredible lineup of talented individuals with the passion to move our great state forward. Thank you to the Selection Committee who faced the War Room and drafted this diverse class full of tremendous upside. Well done!

Please join me in welcoming them to our family at their Kick-Off Social on August 23 at 5:30pm at the Camby Hotel.

The dedicated Valley Leadership Board of Directors has also been hard at work recruiting our next VL President & CEO with the renowned selection firm YScouts. Your collective insight has been extremely helpful contributing to our winning game plan as we search for our next leader. The process is on a diligent fast break and we sincerely appreciate your patience as we navigate this development!  (A huge shout out to VL staff members, Tye and Sophia for your tremendous work ensuring VL scores BIG during this transition!)

Be on the look out for a full calendar full of Alumni programs, and a save the date for our annual celebration of Valley MVPs at the  Man & Woman of the Year luncheon in March 2018.

This is an exciting time for our beloved VL!  Please feel free to reach out to me or the staff at any time.  We love to hear from you!

See you all on August 23 to welcome our next all-star class!

 

Sarah Krahenbuhl

Valley Leadership, Board Chair

“Winning takes talent; to repeat takes character.” – John Wooden

 

Valley Leadership
June Newsletter

It has been an incredible honor to serve as the Chair of the Valley Leadership Board of Directors this year. Through the support of our staff, Board of Directors, volunteers, and community partners, we have had an amazingly successful year. Just a few highlights:

In addition, after the announcement by Christy Moore, our CEO and President, of her decision to explore new opportunities, we began the search for our next organizational leader. Through outreach and feedback efforts, we have received information that will help the Board effectively partner with Y Scouts (our Search Firm) to identify our next staff leader. The search is well underway, and we will continue to keep you updated as we move forward.

As I conclude my serve as Chair, I have multiple people to thank for their support:

Congratulations to Valley Leadership for an incredible year…we have much to be proud of. I look forward to working with our entire VL and Valley community to build on our success next year. Onward and upward!

Jenny Holsman Tetreault
Valley Leadership, Board Chair
jholsman@asu.edu
Class 31

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Valley Leadership
May 2017

As Franklin Roosevelt said, “[w]e cannot always build a future for our youth, but we can always build our youth for the future.” Our “Valley Leadership Youth” program is designed to accomplish President Roosevelt’s goal of building our youth to create an amAZing future for Arizona.

Designed to empower youth to lead, the Valley Leadership Youth program is an innovative and experiential workshop series for high school students. Student participants gain a deep understanding of the significance of philanthropy and leadership in our community. The program specifically tasks high school students with designing and awarding grant funds to local nonprofits and community agencies. The program is led by staff member, Sophia Mayberry, and VL alumni volunteers, including Debra Esparza and Joyce Medina Harper.

A few stats about this amazing program:

After 3 “program days” and the grant award ceremony, program participants were asked to complete the sentence: “I am a philanthropist because I ____.” Their responses are insightful as to the impact of the program:

Just a few weeks ago, I attended the program graduation. I cannot describe the incredible inspiration I felt after leaving the event. Our future is literally in the hands of incredible high school leaders, who are ready to change the world. They see issues and fight for solutions. They break boundaries and push through perceived barriers. They are inclusive and welcoming of all people, thereby creating an open and just community. We have much to be excited about as a result of the young people who will ultimately be our elected officials, business and non-profit leaders, and community advocates. Valley Leadership is fortunate to have been a part of their early training in leadership and philanthropy. We have great hopes, but even higher expectations.

If you would like to find out more about how to support the education and development of our future leaders, (how to volunteer, encourage applicants, or to give), please visit us at http://www.valleyleadership.org/valleyleadershipyouth/

Through time, talent and treasure, Valley Leadership is cultivating change agents early in their leadership careers as President Roosevelt anticipated. We look forward to having them become further invested in our community!

Jenny Holsman Tetreault
Valley Leadership, Board Chair
jholsman@asu.edu
Class 31

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April 2017

The ALP National Leadership Conference is being hosted by Valley Leadership in June…its almost here and its going to be an incredible event.

In fact, I just returned from a leadership conference feeling inspired and enthusiastic about the future of Arizona, Valley Leadership and my personal development! Let me share a few valuable insights:

  1. Make yourself uncomfortable by hearing other perspectives; go “outside the box” and test your limits
  2. Expect adversity to come your way and be prepared (don’t let anything knock you down, keep going for it)
  3. Show up and be present
  4. Be prepared (and more prepared than the person across the table)
  5. Be candid and provide straight talk in a respectful manner
  6. Stop complaining and take action
  7. Focus on people and their development; find leaders in the community and help them to become even stronger
  8. Don’t let others define you, be your own person; decide “who” you want to be and work toward that goal
  9. Don’t wait! You can start making (and we need you to) make an impact now
  10. Enjoy the ride

During the week we met with numerous executives, including the CEO’s from Jamba Juice, Denny’s, Chili’s, Red Robin, and Dunkin’ Donuts. We learned about “how to be an inclusive leader”, “gutsy, gritty strategies for success”, and how to become a “brilliant leader”, but we were presented with something to ponder that was far more important than the development of business attributes.

Literally, every discussion had a reminder about prioritizing the “things” that are important in our lives and making time for them. For some it was to be at home each night for dinner when travel wasn’t necessary, others took different jobs or moved in order to spend time with their children (and not only did they succeed with their family, but they ultimately made it to their dream job).

This was such a great reminder to me. No matter how badly I want to lead Valley Leadership through the transition to our next CEO and President, no matter how badly I want to advocate and work toward solutions for community issues that are important to me, no matter how badly I want to lead my company from a business and legal perspective…we must all prioritize.

This will make me stronger, my family stronger, and my ability to lead effectively stronger. As a result of the leadership conference, I am energized, ready to prioritize and looking forward to leading through a different lens.

You can experience and embrace this type of inspiration by attending the National Leadership Conference hosted by Valley Leadership! With leadership organizations (similar to Valley Leadership) attending from across the country, it will be a great time to get tidbits like those noted above, to remind you about concepts or skills that will make you a stronger leader, and to be inspired to create change. Plus, the networking with leaders from across the country will be second to none.

Check out the conference details and plan to join us for the motivation, leadership skill development and fun you may need! Now is the time to seize opportunities for leadership development and Valley Leadership can support you in that regard.

Look out world! As we were told “the world is my oyster” and I am off to shuck it! Will you Join me?!

Jenny Holsman Tetreault
Valley Leadership, Board Chair
jholsman@asu.edu
Class 31

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Valley Leadership
March 2017

My Valley Leadership experience began after reading The Servant as Leader by Robert Greenleaf before the fall retreat. As Greenleaf articulated, “[t]he servant-leader is servant first…It begins with the natural feeling that one wants to serve, to serve first.” The servant leadership practice is intended to enrich the lives of individuals, build better organizations and ultimately create a more just and caring world.

Servant leadership is celebrated each year with the Man and Woman of the Year honorees (both present and past) at our annual luncheon. It is a time for reflection and inspiration as we hear from servant leaders who are authentic, inspiring, leading and creating positive change in our community.

For the past 67 years, the Man & Woman of the Year Luncheon has honored an outstanding man and woman for their long-term contribution and commitment to our community. This is one of the most prestigious awards given to leaders in the Valley. Past honorees comprise a list of the most notable and influential leaders in our Valley over the last six decades. Review the list of Past Honorees. Our Honorees were recently asked about their recognition and what it meant to them:

Acceptance into the first class of Valley Leadership changed my life. This transformational program has been instrumental in everything I have done since. Those of us who graduated in Class 1 have seen almost 1/3rd of our state’s history since graduation, and have witnessed the myriad ways Valley Leadership’s programs and alumni have positively influenced every sector in Arizona. Nothing makes me prouder to be an Arizonan than Valley Leadership.Ambassador Barbara Barrett
I feel really blessed to have been recognized by Valley Leadership, and I feel the continued obligation to give back to VL through its many ways of serving our community.Dede Yazzie Devine
When I arrived in the Valley from Chicago in 1958 I soon became aware that I had moved to a very open society where there was no “Old Guard” that ran things. I quickly concluded that if one wanted to become involved, all one had to do was to volunteer and follow through by doing a good job and performing whatever task was assigned. Every year the Valley Leadership – Man/Woman of the Year Award re-confirms this observation.Dennis Mithchum

This year’s Honorees are incredible servant leaders in their own right and have been identified because of the characteristics noted above:

First, Dave Tierney has been a partner in the Phoenix firm of Sacks Tierney P.A. since 1974, practicing primarily in Commercial Construction Law. Before moving to Arizona in 1969, Tierney was active in civil-rights issues. In 1962, he made trips to Mississippi in the height of civil-rights violence to help with voter registration, visiting churches that distributed information about related issues. After completing Harvard Law School in 1965, Tierney joined the Peace Corps where he served as Assistant to the City Manager in Barguisimeto, Venezuela. He later became Regional Director for the Peace Corps in Venezuela, before moving to Phoenix.

Second, Dr. Maria Harper-Marinick is the Chancellor of the Maricopa Community College District (MCCD),one of the largest community college systems in the nation. She is the first woman and the first Hispanic to be appointed as Chancellor of the District. In this capacity, Chancellor Harper-Marinick oversees operations for the MCCD system, which serves 200,000 students and nearly 10,000 faculty and staff members across 10 colleges, two skills centers, and several satellite campuses.

Beyond their professional accolades, both of our Honorees are invested in our community and are driving change to make the Valley (and beyond) a better place for future generations. They will be formally recognized at our luncheon scheduled for March 30, 2017, at the Arizona Biltmore. For more information or to purchase seats or sponsorships, please call the Valley Leadership office at (602) 952-6760 or visit www.valleyleadership.org.

We look forward to celebrating Dr. Harper-Marinick and Mr. Tierney in just a few weeks. Please join us to be inspired by their incredible work in the community and to find out how you can embody the practice of servant leadership as they have done.

Jenny Holsman Tetreault
Valley Leadership, Board Chair
jholsman@asu.edu
Class 31

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Valley Leadership
February 2017

Valentine’s Day is right around the corner and love is in the air. Why and what do I love about Valley Leadership? Let me count the ways:

• Our Founders, for having the vision and foresight for leadership development in the Valley
• The incredibly interactive and thought provoking discussions in our Valley Leadership Institute classes
• The leadership and business expertise of our CEO Circle members who work tirelessly to advance VL in the   community
• The inspiration provided by our Valley Leadership Advance class who are going to set the world on fire
• Our VL staff, who continue to bring innovative and entrepreneurial ideas to the organization in order to keep VL one of the premier leadership organizations in the Valley
• Our volunteers, who invest their time and energy to engage our alumni, youth and both current and future VL participants
• Our Board of Directors, for having critical and strategic conversations about the future of our organization

After nearly 40 years of programming, Valley Leadership has become an integral part of the leadership discussions and has helped to further develop change agents in the community. As a result, I also love the “outcomes” of Valley Leadership:

• Over 3,000 Valley Leadership alumni are engaged in critical community programs and organizations in the Valley check out their awesomeness here.
• With hundreds of teens graduating from our Valley Leadership Youth programs, we can rest easy that our youngest leaders have been inspired to create change after obtaining an education about community issues and philanthropic needs in the Valley check out their success here.
• Life changing moments occur through our leadership programming as described by Ellie Ziegler: Other than my parents, Valley Leadership class IX was the catalyst to give more of my time and resources to those less fortunate. In doing so, it created the most joyful and extraordinary experiences of my life. Check out more inspiration here.

Not only are there various “ways” that I love Valley Leadership, but I love our “outcomes” even more! With leaders around the Valley collaborating on solutions for valley wide issues, we are sure to leave the state even more “loved” for our future generations. That is an incredible opportunity that I look forward to “embracing” (during this month of “love” and beyond).

Wishing you all the best as you follow your love this month!

Jenny Holsman Tetreault
Valley Leadership, Board Chair
jholsman@asu.edu
Class 31

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Valley Leadership
January 2017

This year I resolve:

Valley Leadership has similarly identified resolutions, or our key strategies designed to advance the organization:

These strategies are keeping the Board and VL staff busy, while we work toward accomplishing each goal. To that end, there are multiple ways that each of you can invest in the organization. We would love you to consider making a “resolution” this year to engage with us in a personally meaningful way. The list is endless, but below is a starting point!

On behalf of the Valley Leadership Board of Directors, we wish you a joyful and productive 2017. All the best as you work toward achieving your personal and Valley Leadership resolutions!

Yours in Leadership,

Jenny Holsman Tetreault
Valley Leadership, Board Chair
jholsman@asu.edu
Class 31

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Valley Leadership
December 2016

“[Holiday] gift suggestions: to your enemy, forgiveness. To an opponent, tolerance. To a friend, your heart. To a customer, service. To all, charity. To every child, a good example. To yourself, respect.” (Oren Arnold). I love this quote by Mr. Arnold as a way to think about non-material “gifts” we can give to one another and to our community during this holiday season.

The gifts that Valley Leadership (VL) provides the community and our program participants include our multigenerational program offerings. The newest addition being Valley Leadership Advance (VLA), designed specifically for high potential leaders, either new to Arizona or new to civic engagement. The highly-interactive curriculum focuses on three core elements: community orientation, tactical leadership skills development, and connecting and retaining Arizona’s top talent.

The graduation for our 44 VLA 2016 participants was a day long affair, including a community service project held at Recycle Your Bicycle and a celebration at High Octane Raceway (what a way to celebrate!) Participating in program days throughout the fall provided an incredible gift to our Board of Directors as we were able to observe why this critical program is important for participants to understand where we’ve been as a state, where we’re going, who is leading the charge, and how to plug in.

Congratulations to VLA 2016! We look forward to seeing all of the incredible things we know that you will do to help advance Arizona.

Another gift are the incredible program offerings by VL this fall, an effort to build a network of community leaders and provide educational opportunities. From the Man and Woman of the Year announcement and reception, Community Dialogues with inspiring community leaders, a celebratory dinner recognizing a project group from Class 34 who received an award from Child & Family Resources, or a Reunion for Class 27…and this is just the past few weeks! There are also countless internal meetings designed to advance our organizational priorities and external partnerships being developed daily in order to provide the gift of leadership to our community.

Beyond the gifts that Valley Leadership is developing, initiating and implementing, we are most thankful for the incredible gifts from our alumni, future participants, volunteers, staff, members, sponsors, supporters, advocates and ambassadors. Thank you!

We hope you both give and receive amazing gifts this holiday season. Be they service, tolerance, charity, forgiveness, or respect. We hope that you will also embrace all of the “gifts” that VL provides to the community during 2017.

On behalf of the VL Board of Directors, wishing you the very best holiday season and an even happier New Year!

Jenny Holsman Tetreault
Valley Leadership, Board Chair
jholsman@asu.edu
Class 31

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Valley Leadership
November 2016

As a proud graduate of Valley Leadership, there is much to be thankful for related to my involvement with the organization for the last 8 years. I made incredible partnerships and friendships, learned about critical issues facing our community, and developed leadership skills designed to help me serve as a powerful change agent. I was also inspired to volunteer with multiple organizations in the Valley, for which I credit my VL experiences. As a result of all the various ways that I give “thanks” to VL, I have been inspired to wholeheartedly invest in the future of our organization.

Organizationally, Valley Leadership also has much to be thankful for as we work tirelessly to develop leaders that will continue to enhance and advance Arizona. We continue to be innovative and strategic as we develop and enhance our current programming. VL is financially healthy and continuously thinking about diversification and fund development opportunities. We are developing critical community and corporate partnerships, while spending time with graduates and future program participants. And, we continue to evolve our brand and marketing initiatives that help us to articulate why VL is a convener of leaders and a premier leadership program in the Valley.

As a member of our Board of Directors, I provide thanks each day to the incredible group of leaders that I am surrounded by and have the honor of serving with. When asked what each of them were thankful for related to their VL experience, they identified the following:

I know that there are countless other reasons to provide thanks to VL. We would love to capture those thoughts on the VL Facebook page or by sending to me at jholsman@asu.edu.

Finally, thank you to those who have created an organization for which we can all be very proud, and for those that are ensuring that Valley Leadership is here to stay for future class participants. We are incredibly thankful and inspired by our partners, our current class participants, our staff, our volunteers, our alumni, our future participants and our community supporters. THANK YOU!

Jenny Holsman Tetreault
Valley Leadership, Board Chair
jholsman@asu.edu
Class 31

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Valley Leadership
October 2016

One room was a mess and lacking any comfort items. Another was immaculate, with food and drinks. One room had political power, and the other had the power of employment opportunity. Welcome to SIMSOC, a critical component of the Valley Leadership Institute (“VLI”) Retreat.

SIMSOC provides a way for participants to better understand the problems of governing in the 21st century. Participants grapple with issues like economic inequality, diversity, justice, trust, power dynamics and leadership as they negotiate through labor-management relations, political turmoil and natural disasters. To be successful, players must utilize basic social processes from cooperation and rewards, to threat and punishment. The overall goal of SIMSOC is to bring a deeper understanding to everyday experiences, as well as social and organizational theory.

A staple of the VLI Retreat for the last 4 years, our 200+ participants have learned about themselves, their peers, and have connected in a way that helps set the stage for the rest of the year. Observing SIMSOC, I saw participants embrace the opportunity to learn and experience the world in this unique way. SIMSOC helps to level set all of our VLI participants so that program days can be experienced through a lens of understanding and awareness. It is a critical element of our leadership programming and is just the start of what will be an incredible year for our participants.

Each of us likely had very different experiences as a VLI participant. Whether it be through the retreat, program days, group projects, service projects, networking or socializing with your peers, we all became more knowledgeable and embedded in our community as a result of our participation in VLI.

Valley Leadership has made these same outcomes our critical priorities for the VLI this year (and beyond). We have committed to creating an incredibly diverse program that sets our participants up to serve as change agents within our community so that our Valley remains an incredible place to live, learn, work and play.

To find out more about the VLI Retreat programming, and what is in store for our VLI participants this year, please go to Valley Leadership Institute. We look forward to keeping you updated as Class 38 utilizes its SIMSOC experiences to shape their leadership development throughout their VLI experience.

Jenny Holsman Tetreault
Valley Leadership, Board Chair
jholsman@asu.edu
Class 31

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Valley Leadership
September 2016

Dynamic. Connected. Well-Rounded. Opportunity. Life Changing. Influential. “The Best.” Community. Inspiring. Love. Excellence. Needed. Activating.

These are the words used by the Valley Leadership Board of Directors to describe our organization in two words or less. This exercise was a difficult one as Valley Leadership participants typically like to expand their description of how the VL experience impacted their lives (“I learned so much.., I became involved in the community after…, I wanted to change this public policy issue after learning about…”).

A similar question was recently presented to the past Chairs of the Board of Directors. When asked to describe their favorite memory from their Leadership Institute Retreat, the stories came rolling in. Most had vivid memories of the accommodations, the speakers, and the programming. But all recalled the incredible bonds made during the weekend retreat designed to build relationships with each other and to discover what the Valley Leadership experience is all about.

At the retreat for Valley Leadership Advance 2016, held in late August, it was incredible to hear about the expectations and goals of our class participants. Several phrases (“So Excited.” “Can’t wait to get started.” “It’s going to be an incredible year.”) were used to articulate enthusiasm for our Valley Leadership programming designed for high potential leaders leaders in the community.

The Valley Leadership Institute, Class 38, is holding their retreat on September 16 and I look forward to finding out more about their experiences and the legacy they intend to leave this year.

This is an exciting time for Valley Leadership as we begin a plethora of programs and events. Join us at an upcoming event to continue enhancing your professional relationships with Valley Leadership alumni, to rekindle the feelings you had about Valley Leadership during your retreat, and to find a word that best describes your experiences as a participant in one of our programs.

Jenny Holsman Tetreault
Valley Leadership, Board Chair

Class 31

 

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Valley Leadership
August 2016

As I sit and watch the Opening Games of the Olympics, I feel beyond inspired. The dedication, determination, hard work and sacrifice of the athletes is incredible. In discussing how they intend to represent the United States and shoot for the gold, the athletes have discussed the critical need to get the “right” fit for their Teams in order to “win.”

The idea of building a team (and the “right” team) is critical in each of our lives. We build teams with our families, at work, and in our communities. Valley Leadership is no different and we have built an amazing Board of Directors to assist in strategically advancing the organization this year.

A few fun facts about the Board:

The Board members range from Class 7 to Class 37 and 12 classes are represented.

We represent 18 different Universities (from Loyola Marymount to Boston University, and a large contingency of ASU graduates…Go Devils!)

We volunteer and support 58 different organizations outside of Valley Leadership.

Thirty-eight percent of the Board represents the non-profit sector, and another 29% are from the legal, real estate and banking industries.

Board members have 29 children (all future VL graduates!) ranging from 14 weeks to 54 years old.

We have 9 Arizona natives and other Board members originally from Washington, Colorado, Mississippi, Texas, California and Canada.

The Board has over 35 different/unique hobbies, ranging from exercising, playing/watching sports, traveling, cooking and volunteering.

We live in 11 different areas in Maricopa County, with a majority living in the East and West Valley.

Check out additional details about the Board on the VL website.

In addition to the Board, our staff  is incredibly creative, strategic and detail oriented. Our staff team is led by Christy Moore and is joined by Sophia Mayberry, Linda Finecey and Tye Harrison. We could not ask for better representatives of VL and we are so very lucky to have each of them helping to move our organization forward.

And finally, we have the most amazing volunteers. From planning and preparing our Man and Woman of the Year Luncheon, hosting alumni events (ranging from our Community Service Dialogues to networking opportunities), and planning and implementing our Leadership Institute and Leadership Advance programs, there is a place for everyone. We would love to have you join our Team this year. We need your passion, ideas, creativity, strategy and fun to help us develop and implement our current and future programs and services.

Please join me in welcoming our Board of Directors, staff and volunteers supporting and advancing Valley Leadership. We have an incredible Team and I look forward to winning the gold this year with each and every one of them!

Jenny Holsman Tetreault
Valley Leadership, Board Chair

Class 31

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Valley Leadership
July 2016

For the Fourth of July this year, our family rented a home in Sunriver, Oregon. Eighty degree weather allowed us to run a 5K, finish a 20 mile mountain bike ride, paddle board down the Deschutes River, and take our kids on fun adventures. While we wanted to escape the heat, we always miss the Valley and use the time as a way to reflect about our past, present, and future.

Our family had great discussions about how we missed Arizona (yes, even the heat), leadership “misses” in the Valley and State, and made a commitment to take whatever action necessary to ensure that Arizona remains an incredible place for all of us to grow. Beyond these familial commitments, we spent time talking about how we need great leaders to advance critical policy priorities and how organizations (like Valley Leadership) need volunteers to help create the Arizona we want. More importantly, we acknowledged Valley Leadership as the organization to connect and inspire leaders in the community to serve as lasting change agents.

It is an exciting time with Valley Leadership as we begin the year with a dedicated Board of Directors, a new class of Valley Leadership Institute & Leadership Advance participants, an incredible Valley Leadership staff, and a calendar full of alumni activities. We are also looking forward to creatively and strategically advancing our current programs and services so that we appeal to our alumni, future participants, and the communities that we live. We want each of you involved and engaged in our work this year…there is much to be done!

As John Quincy Adams said, “If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.” As we wrap up our family vacation, we continue to reflect about how we can “dream more, learn more and do more” with Valley Leadership. We invite you to share in that reflection and to join us as volunteers, advocates and ambassadors of the organization. We have a place for you to engage with us this year.

Enjoy your summer vacations and we look forward to an incredible year with Valley Leadership!

Jenny Holsman Tetreault
Valley Leadership, Board Chair
Class 31

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Heartfelt Thank You
Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Dear fellow members of the Valley Leadership community,

How many hours of care and effort does it take to put together something great? How many people are needed?

When thinking about Valley Leadership’s recent and wonderful 67th Annual Man and Woman of the Year event, the answer to both of those questions certainly feels like a number in the general area of “millions upon millions.” After coming together as an alumni community to recognize the accomplishments of Mrs. Elva Coors and Dr. Michael Crow, Christy Moore and I have received message upon message cheering both the well-matched pairing of the honorees along with the execution of the event. From these messages and the number of alumni who stayed on well into the evening to share stories and map out the future of our valley, I feel right in calling this year’s version of a signature Valley Leadership event a tremendous success. And this leads me back to the first lines written above: The 67th Annual Man and Woman of the Year event would not have been what it was without the many hours of committed and thoughtful work (cheerfully) done by VL staff and alumni.

For those of you who prepped the activities, tuned up the messages, made sure that tables were bought, assembled centerpieces, manned reception, and covered about one hundred other tasks needed for the event—knowing that this statement falls well short of what all of you deserve for what was accomplished—please accept a heartfelt and simple thank you for making this year’s Man and Women of the Year event special for everyone in that room.

There are still worthy events ahead of us before summer settles upon our lives.

As an alum of VL, if you are looking to stay close to the people, issues, ideas, and projects that brought you here, take a look at the Community Dialogue hosted by Valley Leadership on April 14. Attending will give you the opportunity to hear from Paula L. Pedene, a Service Disabled Veteran and VL alum (VLI Class 23), who followed her heart to help reform the Phoenix Veterans Affairs Health Care System.

An added tradition that is a calendar favorite is taking part in selecting the next group of sparkling individuals who will become future VL alumni. As a part of this process we need you, as alum, to help review and score applications, along with interviewing and being green room hosts for candidates on the day of their interviews. As many of you know from being in the room, taking part in class selection refreshes memories of when each of us was an applicant and forges fresh connections with new alumni. We need many of you to spend a few hours as we create VL and our community’s future. Please reach out to Program Manager Sophia Mayberry (sophia@valleyleadership.org) who can help schedule you in.

Finally, a proud shout out to Valley Leadership’s own Christy Moore. There are indeed more things than can be counted that fall into her basket labeled “what I can do to help VL and our community.” So it was very fitting that she was named Director of the Year by the Organization of Nonprofit Executives for her organizational leadership. Give her a well-earned congrats, handshake, or hug as you see fit when you see her next.

Dr. David Bolman
Board President
Provost, University of Advancing Technology
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The 67th Annual Man and Woman of the Year
Friday, March 11, 2016

The 67th Man and Woman of the Year event is nearly upon us.

Without a doubt, this event is on my short list of favorite days of the year. If you are reading this message, I feel confident that your calendar can be described as over-full with events that have repeating themes of “getting the hard work done” and “making things better.” This is why I get excited to have an afternoon each year when I can pause and spend time with the greatest density of fellow Valley Leadership alumni whose view of our community (and our calendars) are about the same.

As an organization, Valley Leadership’s legacy is like no other in our community. The imprint that nearly four decades of alumni have made touches just about every aspect of what has grown in our piece of Arizona. The growth, economic opportunity, support for those living here, and cultivation of an experience that is wonderfully Arizonan can be clearly and repeatedly tracked back time and again to VL’s alumni.  This year, we will recognize Mrs. Elva Coor and Dr. Michael Crow for their accomplishments, their spirit of volunteerism, and fearlessness in innovating to evolve the Valley. What they have done is a model for what we value. Their work in a larger way echoes what we as an alumni work towards, bit by bit and over time, to have our community continue to be remarkable in greater and greater ways.

See you on March 24th! Let’s say hello, generate connections that result in building great things, and raise the decibel level a bit at the Biltmore as we take a day to celebrate the legacy created by Valley Leadership alums.

Dr. David Bolman
Board President
Provost, University of Advancing Technology
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The New Year
Thursday, January 21, 2016

Here we are at the start of a new year – a time that is beloved to many, myself included. For those of us who call Arizona home, how can we not get excited about this time of year? We are looking ahead to months of weather that is the best. As the weather shifts all of the spaces and events that make up our communities fully come alive in a kind of protracted wonderfulness that we deeply enjoy.

A practice that I do my best to carve out time for is to reflect on the past year, celebrate the victories and be sure that I learned from the events and moments that provided teachings. Even though the holidays certainly have plenty of glittering distractions of their own, I love taking the time to remember the calendar behind us and to see how this lays against the path for the next year. On a good day I get to share these reflections with other VL alumni who, being thinkers-planners-doers, are also have thoughts about the past and the future.

Thinking about the last year and Valley Leadership, I am very proud to say that 2015 was a success that is far above anything we would have hoped for. Last year, VL refreshed how we present ourselves to the community to better align with where we have grown and where we are headed. The new logo and message of Advancing Passions. Accelerating Pursuits. says it well.

Whenever I looked at the caliber and potential of future VL alums who through the selection committee leadership of Megan Cox, Class 33,  populate our Leadership Institute I am a bit awed. Under the alumni leadership of Tivon Moffitt, Class 33 and Joyce Medina Harper, Class 32, Valley Leadership’s flagship program is doing exemplary work in taking these 50+ proven leaders and connecting them in ways that accelerate their ability to build a stronger future for metro Phoenix.

All the while, and within its shiny new home, the work of Valley Leadership is supported by an organization that is as strong as it has ever been. Last month, the pilot Leadership Advance program came to a close – and with it the culmination of years of work creating a new kind of VL experience that captures high-potential leaders and gives them the tools and skills needed to advance in the community. As those who have sat in can attest, this was an incredibly polished experience that did not feel like a trial run to those who took part. You don’t accomplish this without the support of a strong organization and alumni leaders such as Angela Hughey, Class 33.

Last year I had the honor to sit in on the Valley Leadership CEO Circle dinner. This advisory circle brings members of the community together to provide us with guidance on what our community needs most. During the fall 2015 gathering, soon to be Man of the Year, Dr. Micheal Crow stated that one of the greatest needs of our community is a deeper well of trained leaders who know what great looks like and can connect together to not only build greatness, but also to call out and intercede on items that hurt our community.

On all fronts, I am very happy to say after looking back at 2015, it is a safe statement to say that VL is filling the call being put forward by leaders such as Dr. Crow.

The work being done by Valley Leadership is good. Really good. And trending upward. So as we plan our 2016, I hope that you will carve out time to stay engaged. Attend an event or two. Receiving some insider knowledge about the community is time well invested, as is reconnecting with other alums to make plans on a project. Volunteer to help with programming and recruitment. And of course, stay current with your financial support through making an investment, become a community steward member, or help sponsor programming.

Dr. David Bolman
Board President
Provost, University of Advancing Technology
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Home Sweet Home
Tuesday, October 13, 2015

One of my favorite quotes from an obscure 80’s movie is: “Home is where you hang your hat” (and cheers to anyone who figures out which cult movie this is from). I love this phrase because it first reminds us that as humans we indeed seek out bases where we are comfortable and surrounded in a sense of welcome. The other suggestion is that, while the locations of our families are always dear to us, there is room in our lives for other spaces that we choose to treat as home.  When my thoughts travel along these tracks, I am reminded how much I appreciate spaces that I can return to time and again – especially when I am in need of ideas, recharge or the companionship of my favorite people.

And of course, this leads to Valley Leadership. Over the last year, the leadership of VL has been thinking hard about creating a space that is an operational center for all of VL’s program offerings, including the Leadership Institute, Man & Woman of the Year, and the Youth Leadership in Philanthropy Program. As this conversation evolved, all members of the staff and Board of Directors asked the question “What would a space look like that would serve alumni of VL programs?”. Knowing that for the majority of us alumni, our work in developing the local community keeps us fluid in terms of our roles and affiliations. VL’s leadership made a priority of designing the new office as a home base that alumni can return to, reconnect with VL relationships and resources. This includes being inviting to encourage visitors to slow down and savor a great latte, a cold brew, and conversation.

It has been a year of hard work and planning, but the elements that make up the new Valley Leadership offices have done what we set out to do. From the historic location across from the Phoenix Country Club, to the reinvention of classic 1960’s architecture, to the shared spaces for alumni to convene, and the tributes to our history, this is a wonderful home base.

I invite you to come see it and take part in the official Grand Opening on October 22nd. We can celebrate, connect, perhaps lay the groundwork for a meaningful community project or two, and enjoy each other’s company.

Here are the details…

From all of us at VL – welcome home, alumni!

Dr. David Bolman
Board President
Provost, University of Advancing Technology
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Retreat Remarks
Tuesday, September 22, 2015

After spending time with the Leadership Institute Class 37 at their retreat last weekend, I am left feeling quite simply pumped-up for them, and Arizona’s future.

Retreat is done and Class 37 has been introduced to the VL community! As individuals, and as a group, they have many program days, tours and group projects left before they join us as alumni. The wait will be worth it. The selection committee, lead by Meghan Cox, Class 33, has brought us a group of proven leaders who have the energy, values, and care for our community that will continue the legacy of VL leaders before them.

During retreat, I remarked to the Class that each of them represent an investment we are making towards the future of our community. This is not trivial. Each year, out of the 3.25 million people who reside in the valley, we select 50’ish individuals who we believe are best suited to enable our communities and do the big, brave things that are needed when we look to fulfill our state’s potential. It is not a stretch to view this small group, which takes a year to cultivate into VL alumni, as precious. They are a small number, with incredible potential. We know this because we see the stamp that VL alumni have put on so many of our communities projects and dreams that have been realized.

So as alumni, I challenge you to treat them as such: build bridges to them individually, speak at and support creating their Class experiences. And of course, pick up the phone to mentor them and support their ideas as they move forward.

We will all be very much rewarded.

Dr. David Bolman
Board President
Provost, University of Advancing Technology

 

Chair’s Corner