Leaderful Delaware Emerging Leaders Program

Download the application: 2023 application packet (revised)

Our Vision
To develop diverse leaders who are grounded in their own leadership, can sustain themselves as leaders, support the leadership of others, and can drive community change and growth.

Program Goals

  • Develop a shared understanding of leaderful communities
  • Enhance the skills necessary to solve problems collaboratively, including effective communication, meeting facilitation, and conflict resolution
  • Connect community impact work to professional and personal growth
  • Encourage and support practices that restore, inspire, sustain, and empower community leaders
  • Build interconnected pipelines of community change agents
  • Inspire a peer network
  • Create a network of mentors for emerging leaders

Program Overview

Participants receive in-depth exposure to critical issues facing Delaware County and the Catskill Mountains region through lectures, small group conversations, personal introspection, and panel discussions featuring current community leaders.

The innovative curriculum is based on scientific theories of organizational and community leadership. Leaderful Delaware offers an alternative to the traditional model and calls on leaders to be concurrent, collective, collaborative, and compassionate. Strategies include effective facilitation, dialogue skills, intensive listening skills, managing conflict, intercultural competence, leadership styles, and peer coaching.

Program Schedule

Our 2023-2024 program will start on October 12 with an in-person session in Delhi.  We will continue to meet on the second Wednesday of each month through May 2024. A graduation recognition will be celebrated at the Chamber’s Business and Breakfast event in June 2024.

Program Fees

Applicants may be sponsored by a business, municipality, or a community organization. Tuition, payable by sponsor or participant, is $595 per participant. Tuition includes all program fees, meals, and materials. Payment is required prior to the first class.

Application Process

An application( 2023 application packet (revised) ) must be submitted by October 1. This is a competitive selection process and, due to the limit on the number of applicants admitted to the program, not all applicants may be accepted.

Candidates will be selected on their:

  • Commitment and motivation to community service
  • Previous community service or a desire to become involved in community activities
  • Interest in public service and a desire to learn more about public policy
  • Potential to advance to leadership positions within their companies
  • Commitment to remain in Delaware County

2023 – 2024 SCHEDULE

Opening Session
October 12, 2023 | 1:00 – 4:00 pm

  • Introduction to Collective Leadership
  • Theory of Community Leadership
  • Focusing on Vision and Passion

Simulated Societal Activity (SIMSOC)
November 9, 2023 | 10:00 am – 4:00 pm, lunch provided

Building Your Toolkit
December 14, 2023 | 10:00 am – 4:00 pm, lunch provided

  • Leadership Styles
  • Communication in Conflict
  • Facilitation Skills
  • Partnering with Local Media to Deliver Your Message

Quality of Life and Value of Place
January 11, 2024 | 10:00 am – 4:00 pm, lunch provided

  • What is Placemaking and Should I Care?
  • A Historical Perspective of Community
  • Managing the Visitor Economy
  • Healthcare 

Business and Industry
February 8, 2024 | 10:00 am – 4:00 pm, lunch provided

  • Economic demographics
  • Housing
  • Resource Agencies
  • Tour(s) of local companies


  • BOCES as Economic Development Engine
  • Mentoring Toward Population Recovery

Social Dynamics
March 14, 2024 | 10:00 am – 4:00 pm, lunch provided

  • Trauma Informed Practices
  • Adverse Childhood Experiences
  • Impact of Poverty
  • Community Resources/Services

April 11, 2024 | 10:00 am – 4:00 pm, lunch provided

  • Applying leadership theory to practice
  • Local Challenges, Local Solutions
    • Recycling/Compost Facility Tour
    • Public Safety/Criminal Justice
    • Watershed Affairs

May 9, 2024 | 10:00 am – 4:00 pm, lunch provided

  • Watershed Agricultural Council
  • Delaware County Farm Bureau
  • Tours of Area Farms


  • Review of Lessons and Resources
  • Program Evaluation
  • Project Presentations

Graduation Celebration

June 20, 2024 | 8:30 to 10:00 am

To be held at Chamber’s Business and Breakfast Event