By Audrey Menard
Rancho Solano Preparatory School
Class 29 Blog: This is a blog series about the experience and impact of Scottsdale Leadership’s Core Program. The views expressed here represent those of class members and not those of Scottsdale Leadership.
Our last day of class began with all of us feeling a tug in our heart. Class 29 has really grown together over the last nine months. It was a bitter-sweet day for us all.
We began by reviewing the Positive Leadership curriculum. Through a leadership journey that takes us through the components of authenticity, purpose, advocacy, resilience, community building, reason and gratitude, we are equipped with the qualities needed to make a difference in our Scottsdale community. For further development, the book, Thanks: How Practicing Gratitude Can Make You Happier by Robert Emmons, was highly recommended.
From there we closed our eyes and reflected on the past nine months. We thought about our Leadership Compass point, our purpose statements, the core curriculum, and the great impact that Scottsdale Leadership had on our lives. We journaled and we shared. The room was full of gratitude. There was clearly a commitment to continue our shared passion for our community and find the best way for each of us to plug into Scottsdale. Kim Hanna, Class 27, shared numerous opportunities to connect just within Scottsdale Leadership. What mattered most to us all? What mattered for us was finding some place where we can serve and commit.
We interacted with a wonderful panel that shared best practices regarding participating on a non-profit board. That was very eye-opening, even for those of us that have served on boards. Eileen Rogers, Class 2, suggested subscribing to BoardSource which is full of professional materials for board edification and best practices. She shared the four basic duties of obedience: the duty of care; the duty of financial oversight; the duty of loyalty; and the duty of transparency. After Class 29 had the opportunity to ask questions, the discussion topics became very broad. We could have spent the whole day on board engagement alone.
Our attention, then, turned to the riveting story of JP Holyoak, Class 18, and his rise to having a medical marijuana empire here in the Valley. Marijuana has made a significant difference in his daughter’s health and wellbeing. However, his message was really about the fact that being a leader can be difficult. When you are blazing a new path, you can get all kids of attacks and people attempting to thwart your every effort. Leaders keep going.
After a lot of inspiration and development of our own personal commitment and intention, it was time for the infamous talking stick circle. As the tissue box followed the talking stick around the circle, we shared tremendous memories, heartfelt thanks, admiration, commitment to remaining connected, and appreciation for Emily, Margaret, and Scottsdale Leadership. This program as left an indelible stamp on all of our hearts and we are all better people because of this leadership program. Look out! We will live up to our class name: Class 29 – Leaving a Legacy!