The 2020 class of Leadership Venango met for their fifth session in February in Franklin to learn about local governance and honorable leadership.
The day began at the County Courthouse Annex with a panel discussion facilitated by Randy Arnold, 2019 Leadership Venango graduate. The panel included Jason Ruggerio (County Planning Commission), Mike Port (Cranberry School District board member) and Tracy Jamieson (manager of the city of Franklin). They were asked about their respective jobs including motivation and challenges, and gave advice on how to obtain similar leadership positions.
Next was Joseph Grunenwald, past President of Clarion University and an active community member. He spoke on what it means to be an “honorable” leader and traits these leaders have, including honesty, courage, long-term persistence, humility and doing the right thing even when it’s hard. The best leaders are forward thinking and put service above self.
The group walked to the Barrow’s Little Theatre for lunch and a discussion with the three County Commissioners. They discussed job responsibilities, challenges of the County, and their hopes for moving the County forward as united leaders. They also encouraged questions and stated their open door policy of hearing constituents’ concerns.
After lunch, members of the FLEX Young Professionals gave an overview of the group’s mission and activities and encouraged participants to consider membership.
Trenton Moulin, President/CEO of Bridge Builders Community Foundations, then gave a presentation on Boardsmanship. He discussed the importance of serving on a board that lines up with personal values. As a future resource, he gave each member of the classa copy of the Handbook for Directors of Nonprofit Corporations in the United States of America. Prior to leaving, Zach Covington gave the class a tour of the Barrow-Civic Theatre.
The last stop of the afternoon was to visit Judge Lobaugh and tour the Venango County Courthouse. Judge Lobaugh was a gracious host describing the history of the building and its contents. He exemplified the qualities of an honorable leader as it was clear he has devoted his career to child advocacy and drug and alcohol rehabilitation. It was also clear that he had a passion and love for Venango County.
The next session will be in March at UPMC Northwest and will focus on “Leading a Healthy Community.”
This article was published in the Venango Chamber’s March 2020 VenangoWorks! Newsletter.