Mason County Rural Community Leadership Program
March 21, 2018
We are so excited to introduce the first class of the Mason County Rural Community Leadership program. This 9-month leadership development program is building the leadership skills of 38 individuals (ranging from youth to retired seniors) in Mason County.
In 2017, the Community Foundation committed $25,000 per year for three years for this new leadership initiative in Mason County. Along with our support, two statewide funders and many local businesses, service clubs, and individual donors helped bring this effort to Mason County.
A nonprofit organization, Rural Development Initiatives, is delivering the training. The program is based on the belief that vital rural communities develop from a broad base of knowledgeable, skilled, and motivated leaders. The training consists of sessions that focus on developing the community leadership capacity of individuals. The training typically consists of 45 class hours held over approximately 6 months and the completion of a class project.
In February and March, the class worked to together to select their class project. They plan to build "buddy benches" in the elementary schools in Mason County. The concept is based off of this example in Florida. We will share more news on the buddy benches project as it develops.
A typical class consists of individuals ranging from high school students to retired seniors, with varied leadership experience ranging from emerging to seasoned. The training is designed for a diverse mix of community members representing business, government, sovereign nations, nonprofit organizations, and others, and connects many different voices on the challenges and opportunities faced by rural places.
In addition to benefitting the leaders who participate in the program each year, the program will help connect residents to each other and their communities in a way that promotes community vitality. For more information about this program, contact Mindie Reule.
Participating Community Leaders | 2017-2018
Andy Arnes, City of Shelton
Donovan Arnold, North Mason Regional Fire Authority
Trish Aust, Hood Canal School District
Justin Baze, Black Star
Chalcy Blake, Peninsula Credit Union
Matthew Blegen, Great Bend Center for Music
Stephanie Boysen, Self employed
Mark Christensen, Shelton High School student
Adena Clark, North Mason Chamber of Commerce
Andy Conklin, Windermere Real Estate
Dan Cooling, Anchor Bank
Megan Fiess, Thurston County Chamber of Commerce
Laura Friese, North Mason Regional Fire Authority
Kathy Geist, Mason Transit Authority
Rachel Hansen, NW Event Organizers
Mendy Harlow, Hood Canal Salmon Enhancement Group
Jeromy Hicks, North Mason Regional Fire Authority
Jennifer Hoodenpyle, Olympic College
Linda Jenkins, Mason Fire District 4
Trena Johnson, Peninsula Credit Union
Karin Leaf, Economic Development Council of Mason County
Carrie Lemmon, United Way of Mason Coungty
Heidi McCutcheon, Shelton-Mason County Chamber of Commerce
Brad Miller, New York Life
Scotty Mills, Keller Williams Realty
Dawn Myers, Mason County PUD 3
Mark Nault, Our Community Credit Union
Jamie Ogg, City of Shelton
Brian Omdahl, Taylor Shellfish Farms
Bryan Pettit, CUSO Financial in partnership w/ Peninsula Credit Union
Teri Schnitzer, Thurston County Treasurer
Brianna Sheetz, Taylor Shellfish Farms
Jeff Slakey, KMAS/iFiberone Newsradio
Allison Smith, Olympic College
Pam Volz, Thurston County Chamber of Commerce
Don Welander, Shelton School District
Nathan Welch, Rites of Passage NW
Matt Zenick, Sierra Pacific Industries
March 21, 2018< Back to News