From State Chamber of Commerce Leadership Arkansas Chairman Toni Lindsey

From State Chamber of Commerce Leadership Arkansas Chairman Toni Lindsey
Toni Lindsey

Leadership Arkansas is designed to advance the development of existing and emerging business leaders into a committed, involved and diverse network of community and economic activists in Arkansas. To date, nearly 700 individuals have completed this outstanding program, representing all types of businesses and industry, as well as educational, nonprofit, governmental and civic organizations.

The Leadership Arkansas program examines issues critical to Arkansas, furthers development of leadership skills and provides a foundational background to formulate future opportunities by critically exploring Arkansas’ history, demography and diversities. One of the most rewarding and lasting benefits of Leadership Arkansas is the valuable time participants spend interacting with current leaders from a variety of professions, philosophies and locations, representing Arkansas’ diverse population and geography. Participants also discuss critical regional issues with a statewide perspective, enhancing their ability to work on local solutions while maintaining a statewide outlook.

After nine months of intensive study and dialogue, those individuals who successfully complete the program have a comprehensive knowledge and understanding of the complexity of the state and local communities, and are uniquely positioned to make meaningful contributions in the future.

Leadership Arkansas graduates have gone on to:

• Chair local community projects

• Serve on statewide boards and commissions

• Volunteer their time

• Invest in Arkansas’ local community

• Serve as elected officials

There’s no question that Leadership Arkansas graduates help make our state work and grow, but that’s not the only benefit. When they fully participate in the program, they expand their network, their understanding of our state and their skills as leaders. It’s difficult for a Leadership Arkansas graduate not to be changed as a person after connecting and working closely with others who share the desire for change and solutions. Plus, there’s no better way to get to know the place where you live.

Many Leadership Arkansas participants who have lived in Arkansas for years or even decades have been surprised at how much they did not know about our state. Our history, the people, the problems, the solutions were all discovered because those participants made a decision to get involved in the Leadership Arkansas program.

We thank Citizens Bank of Batesville, ARcare, Electric Cooperatives of Arkansas, Entergy Arkansas, Farm Credit Services of Arkansas, Nucor Arkansas, Southwest Power Pool and Walmart Inc. for their generous support of Leadership Arkansas Class XIII.

As we prepare for Class XIV, we are seeking individuals to join us in discovering the many facets and needs of our state and take the lead in shaping Arkansas’ future.

Toni Lindsey is the director of Leadership Arkansas and the director of Governmental Affairs State Chamber/AIA.