Reprinted with permission. By Shelly Hillman / Houghton College
Leadership Allegany is pleased to announce the addition of Alfred State as the program’s third partner, joining Houghton College and the Greater Allegany Chamber of Commerce.
Alfred State has long been faithful in sending participants and having employee representatives serve on the steering committee of the leadership program. This partnership will add Jonathan Hilsher, director of the Center for Civic Engagement at Alfred State, as a co-chair with Phyllis Gaerte, alumni and engagement director at Houghton College.
“Alfred State’s participation complements our strategic emphasis in building leadership skills and civic engagement within the student experience,” notes Hilsher. “We are excited to scale up our involvement in this way investing in the success and development of our county’s leaders.”
Gaerte is equally enthusiastic about the partnership. “It has been a pleasure to collaborate with staff and administrators from Alfred State over the years. It seemed only natural and the right thing to do to honor their faithfulness and to bring together our strengths to better serve Allegany County professionals,” she remarks.
Founded in 2010, Leadership Allegany is currently in its eighth year, with a full 16-member cohort representing a variety of private and nonprofit sector businesses. The program provides networking, leadership, and development opportunities for professionals living in the county. These individuals interact with representatives from multiple sectors of the county – such as government, the justice system, recreation, agriculture, education, human services, and health care – in order to gain a deeper understanding of these areas and the challenges they face.
Participants also engage in curriculum sessions that enhance their understanding of their roles as leaders, as well as plan one of the program’s industry visit days, and take part in a service project that supports a worthy cause through action and/or education. Upon graduation, they are charged to act as catalysts for positive change and take up further leadership roles.
Founding sponsors of Leadership Allegany include ACCORD Corporation, Alfred Higher Education Group, Allegany Business Center, Allegany County Area Foundation, Allegany County Department of Social Services, Greater Allegany County Chamber of Commerce, Houghton College, Literacy West Inc., and the United Way of Allegany County.