graduation blog

30 Local Leaders Graduate from Leadership Upper Valley

Vital Communities celebrated its Leadership Upper Valley Class of 2017 on June 14, in a commencement ceremony at Harpoon Brewery. Thirty of the region’s emerging local leaders graduated from the 10-month professional and personal development program that builds knowledge and networks to help local leaders succeed in and serve the Upper Valley.

“Leadership Upper Valley has been opening minds and hearts to the region’s challenges and inspiring innovative solutions from emerging local leaders for more than a decade,” said Leadership Upper Valley Manager Stacey Glazer. “This year’s class included 30 participants from some of the area’s largest employers, small businesses, local nonprofit organizations, schools, and municipalities who came together to explore regional issues through their range of perspectives and build the kinds of connections that weave the fabric of the Upper Valley community. We’re thrilled to expand our ranks of alumni to nearly 250 with the members of the Leadership Upper Valley Class of 2017.”

To develop a deeper understanding of the Upper Valley, this year’s class of 30 participants spent a day at the Southern State Correctional Facility to learn more about the inner workings of our justice system; rode Advance Transit to downtown Lebanon, where they walked the city discussing community design with a city planner; learned to identify native trees on the nature trails at VINS; went behind the scenes during Northern Stage’s production of A Christmas Carol; toured the Hartford Area Career and Technology Center; met with more than a dozen Upper Valley nonprofit service providers at The Woodlands; toured the mill buildings in Claremont to see firsthand the adaptive reuse of historic buildings; and learned how to run their own campaign to effect positive change in their communities. They also completed two service projects supporting the Mascoma River Greenway and Claremont Soup Kitchen.

This year’s Leadership Upper Valley graduates include:

Alice Ely of Grantham – Mascoma Valley Health Initiative

Beatriz Cantada, formerly of West Lebanon – formerly of Dartmouth College

Brett Mayfield of White River Junction – Spark! Community Center

Chris Kennedy of Hanover – UK Architects

David Urso of Quechee – Kendal at Hanover

Elizabeth McShinsky of Sharon – River Valley Community College

Erin Gooch of Lebanon – Dartmouth-Hitchcock

Evan Leary of Enfield – Family Financial Strategies

Heidi Postupack of Hanover – Second Growth

Jeff Roosevelt of Sunapee – Kendal at Hanover

Jennifer Fontaine of Haverhill – Upper Valley Haven

Jennifer Riccio of Etna – Hypertherm

Jessica Walker of Claremont – Claremont Savings Bank

Reese Madden of Norwich – Hypertherm

Julie Martin of Charlestown – Claremont Savings Bank

Katie Kobe of Hanover – Granite United Way

Kelly Crate of Enfield – City of Lebanon

Kimberly Quirk of Enfield – Energy Emporium

Kim Vacca of Brownsville – Red River Computer Company

Leah Romano of Norwich – MedU

Linda Lanteigne Magoon of West Lebanon – Thetford Academy

Marie McCormick of Lebanon – Upper Valley Educators Institute

Mark Bradley of Lebanon – Lebanon Opera House

Nelly Palmer of Cornish – Mascoma Savings Bank

Patrick Christie of Lebanon – Advance Transit

Paul Coats of Lebanon – City of Lebanon

Peggy Allen of White River Junction – Consultant

Sadie Simpson of Norwich – The Simpson Companies

Sarah Sincerbeaux of South Pomfret – VINS

Susan Jacobs of West Lebanon – Co-op Food Stores

LUV Rail Trail-4_blog

Connection, Collaboration & Service

With the graduation of this year’s class of 30 participants, Leadership Upper Valley has trained more than 200 community leaders — from bankers to educators to nonprofit staff and retirees — in its first decade.

The power of the program is the ways in which it connects participants to the community — and to each other — to the benefit of all.

Read the entire article in the Valley News Enterprise Magazine.

30 Community Leaders Graduate from Leadership Upper Valley

Leadership Upper Valley Program Celebrates 10th Anniversary with Largest Class Ever

The largest class yet – 30 participants – graduated from Vital Communities’ Leadership Upper Valley program on June 8 in Windsor, VT. The year-long program aims to inspire, educate, and engage established and emerging leaders to better serve their communities.

2016pageheader

“This program changed the very way we think and interact with one another and with our community,” said graduate Markell Ripps, an attorney at Grossman & Ripps PLLC, who spoke on behalf of the Class of 2016 at the ceremony. “We entered this program as individuals, bankers, nonprofit employees, lawyers, educators, entrepreneurs, CEOs, family care givers, business owners, Vermont and New Hamphsire residents, and we leave as volunteers, future public servants, board members, questioners, and best of all classmates, fellow Upper Valley community members, and friends.”

Established in 2007, Leadership Upper Valley engages participants in 10 day-long sessions from September through June focused on key aspects of community life in the region. Topics include Economic Development, Education, Government and Politics, Arts and the Creative Economy, Communication, Health and Human Services, Environment, Transportation, and Justice.

Including this year’s graduating class, there are now more than 200 Leadership Upper Valley alumni. The Class of 2017 will begin in September.

This year’s graduates include:

Addy Mae Williams, Mascoma Savings Bank

Ayeshah Al-Humaidhi, Upper Valley Humane Society

Brent Edgerton, Kendal at Hanover

Christopher Coughlin, Dartmouth Printing

Cynthia Twombley, West Central Behavioral Health

Daniel McCarthy, Sage Dining Services

Diane Reinhardt, COVER

Elizabeth Long, Twin Pines Housing Trust

Emily Rogers, Hanover Consumer Co-op

Frank Gould, Mascoma River Greenway Coalition

Georgie Sawyer, David’s House

Irene Green, Northern Stage

Jeremy Coylewright, WISE

Jessie Farnham, Frazer Insurance Agency

Kyle Fisher, Listen Community Services

Lindsey Klecan

Lyn Miller, Our Hybrid Lives, LLC

Margaret Monroe-Cassel, TLC Family Resource Center

Marion Steiner, Lake Sunapee Bank

Markell Ripps, Grossman & Ripps, PLLC

Michael Baymiller, Hypertherm

Rachel Abendroth, Dartmouth College

Ron Miller, Sustainable Woodstock

Sadie Wells, Mascoma Savings Bank

Shawn Bard, Ledyard National Bank

Sue Nadeau, Southwestern Community Services

Terri Decker, Claremont Savings Bank

Tim Condon, Cook Little Rosenblatt & Manson, PLLC

Tina Stearns, City of Lebanon

Wendy Farnsworth, Dartmouth-Hitchcock

See more photos from Graduation here.

 

Bob-Sarah_Aug15 (1)

Home Green Home

Many people will buy a house at least once in their lifetime. Some will ask about energy use and seek to purchase an energy-efficient home. Few will invest in home energy improvements at the time of the sale.

Leadership Upper Valley alumni Bob Walker (Class of 2010) and Sarah Simonds (Class of 2014) are setting out to change that. Their effort kicks off this spring with help from a diverse group of partners including nonprofits, real estate professionals, lenders and state programs. The project is one of many efforts led by Leadership Upper Valley alumni who use skills and connections formed through the program to effect positive change in our region.

Click here to read more

Karen_blog

What effect can you have?

Participants in the 10-month Leadership Upper Valley program from Vital Communities discover the rich diversity of the Upper Valley region. They gather in municipalities across the Twin States, grapple with critical regional issues, connect with local service organizations and establish a strong, collegial network.

After graduation, as an outgrowth of their learning experience, participants often step into new leadership roles — including as elected officials in local and state offices, like alumnae Patricia Higgins, of Hanover, and Windsor’s Heather Prebish.

Read the entire article here...

enterprise3

Show Them The Magic

It’s a common problem among manufacturing companies in the Upper Valley and elsewhere: Experienced employees are nearing retirement, and there aren’t enough younger folks lining up to replace them.

“We have been realizing over the past few years that we need to think outside the box to recruit talent to GW Plastics,” said Cathy Tempesta, human resources director for the Bethel-based company that specializes in precision injection molding.

In one of those fortunate instances of being in the right place at the right time, Mollie Naber, then a participant in Vital Communities’ Leadership Upper Valley program and a consultant for Green Mountain Economic Development Corp., found at least part of a solution.

Read more of this Valley News Enterprise Magazine article here

enterprise2

Inspiring Conversations About our Region’s Addiction Problem

Though he’d never given the justice system much thought, Anibal Sepulveda, who leads the North American marketing team for Hypertherm, found himself at the Southern State Correctional Facility in Springfield a little less than four years after arriving in the Upper Valley. Fortunately for Sepulveda, he wasn’t there for a drug offense, but instead as part of the Leadership Upper Valley program from Vital Communities, the White River Junction-based nonprofit that brings people and organizations together to address regional opportunities in the areas of agriculture, energy, transportation, economy and community leadership.

Read more of this Valley News Enterprise Magazine article here…

LeadershipUpperValleyGraduation2015

21 Local Leaders Graduate Leadership Upper Valley

Twenty-one leaders from around the region graduated in June from Leadership Upper Valley, a program of Vital Communities that inspires, educates, and engages citizens to better serve their communities. The graduation was held Wednesday, June 10, at Harpoon Brewery in Windsor.

“In contemplating the extent of all we have learned, I am left with one overarching word that describes this year: empowerment,” said Havah Armstrong Walther, the class speaker for the ceremony. “Yes, we have met a hundred new and amazing leaders in our community, learned things we never knew before, and traveled to new places. However, we have also grown as citizens and as leaders ourselves.”

This year’s graduates include:

Alijah Swasey, Kendal at Hanover
Bill Blaiklock, Mascoma Savings Bank
Brandy Blackinton, Claremont Savings Bank
Deborah Mozden, Turning Points Network
Havah Armstrong Walther, Hartford Area Career and Technology Center
Heather W. Prebish, Recover Together
Duncan McCutchan, Jarvis Hill Farm
Jim Larrick, Mascoma Savings Bank
Jed Putney, Mascoma Savings Bank
Karen Ganey, Henderson Tree Service and Creative Lives
Kathy Labbe, Harvest Hill Assisted Living
Laurie Sepulveda, Opera North
Miranda Pizinger, Dartmouth-Hitchcock
Nik Fiore, Engineering Ventures
Paula Maville, City of Lebanon
Robert Starkey, Hypertherm
Samantha Estes, Co-op Food Stores
Shanon Hounshell, Green Mountain  Economic Development Corporation
Shawn Courtemanche, Kendal at  Hanover
Teresa Thurston, The Lyme School

Graduation 2014

29 Local Leaders Graduate

Twenty-nine leaders from around the region graduated this week from Leadership Upper Valley, a program of Vital Communities that inspires, educates, and engages citizens to better serve their communities. The graduation was held Wednesday, June 11, at Harpoon Brewery in Windsor.

“The modern models of leadership that are most widely embraced in the world are inclusive and creative. They are problem solving and solution seeking,” said Opera North Executive Director Pamela Pantos, Leadership Upper Valley Class of 2010 alumna and this year’s commencement keynote speaker. “Graduates of Leadership Upper Valley are well-prepared to provide this kind of leadership, whether in their workplace or the broader community. It is a way of life that breeds success in everyone with whom we come in contact.”

Established in 2007, Leadership Upper Valley engages participants in ten day-long sessions from September through June focused on key aspects of community life in the region. Topics include Economic Development, Education, Government and Politics, Arts and the Creative Economy,  Health and Human Services, Environment, Transportation, Justice, Community and Civic Engagement.

This year’s graduates include:

Anibal Sepulveda, Hypertherm

Beth Vessicio, Mascoma Savings Bank

Betsy McClain, Town of Hanover

Cathee Clement, Chrysalis Properties LLC

Chris Mazurek, West Lebanon Feed & Supply

David Brooks, City of Lebanon

Ellie Tsetsi, Good Beginnings of Sullivan County

Ericka Gray, Kendal at Hanover

Gary Laperle, Dartmouth Printing Company

Hailey Wetherbee, Kendal at Hanover

Ham Gillett, COVER Home Repair

Jacqueline Hill, Morgan Stanley

Janet Miller Haines, Northern Stage

Jason Dacier, Co-op Food Stores

Jaye Olmstead, David’s House

Justin Provost, Claremont Savings Bank

Kari Jo Grant, Dartmouth College

Kevin Kober, Ledyard National Bank

Laurie Tostenson, Dartmouth-Hitchcock

Linda Miller, Dartmouth-Hitchcock

Lucinda Walker, Norwich Public Library

Mike Kenney, Dartmouth-Hitchcock

Mollie Naber, Self-Employed

Richard Hoffman, Hartford School District (HACTC)

Sarah Simonds, Vital Communities

Sue Bryan, Lake Sunapee Bank

Susanne Abetti, Geobarns LLC

Sylvia Provost, Henderson’s Tree Service LLC

Tom Yurkosky, TPY CFO Services

Including this year’s graduating class, there are now more than 150 Leadership Upper Valley alumni. The Class of 2015 will begin in September.