If SCLN Disappeared

2017 SCLN Board Retreat

Executive Director Nancy OlsonOur board of directors held an all-day retreat a few weeks ago, looking back in celebration of Southern California Leadership Network’s 30th Anniversary, and looking forward as we create a new strategic plan taking SCLN through 2020 and beyond.

These past few years have brought incredible growth in our programs, expanding the number of people engaged in SCLN fellowships by over 80%.  Growth in the number of SCLN participants is absolutely important – but we needed to explore how we can define and grow our IMPACT.

We asked all of our board members to consider the question: What changes do you want to see in the world as a result of SCLN’s work? They did not disappoint in their responses – here are some highlights:

  • Leaders who are authentic, inclusive, collaborative, interdependent, diverse, mindful, ethical, trusted, and have strong emotional intelligence.
  • Personal accountability.
  • Corporate responsibility.
  • Civil discourse and tolerance.
  • Civic engagement based on knowledge of what the problems are.
  • Making a deeper, more global impact.

Conversely, we asked them: If SCLN disappeared, what would be lost?  Their collective response was poignant, and literally brought some of us to tears as we considered what would be lost if our work ceased:

  • Forums for engagement: SCLN is uniquely positioned for inclusive access and action.
  • Collective creative thought about how to collaboratively address our region’s and our state’s most pressing challenges.
  • Growth in the nonprofit ecosystem: The SCLN-driven pipeline of highly prepared, energized board members would cease.
  • Connection between SCLN’s network of 3,000+ alumni and thousands of business, government and nonprofit partners across California and the nation.
  • Ambition and certainty of next steps: Would-be participants might otherwise simply engage in business as usual in their own lives and the world in which they live.
  • Opportunity for businesses to be good corporate citizens as they invest in tomorrow’s leaders and in solutions created as a result of SCLN’s work.

SCLN holds a unique position, bringing together people across sectors, demographics, political perspectives, and geographic boundaries to address the challenges faced by our region and state.  There are countless stories of good that simply would not have happened if not for connections made and lessons learned during an SCLN fellowship.

This year SCLN is sharing 30 of these stories. To celebrate our 30th anniversary, we are recognizing 30 outstanding SCLN alumni who work hard every day to make a difference – one each week for 30 weeks. Learn about their experiences as SCLN fellows, their leadership journeys and their impact on people, companies, nonprofits and places you know.

Join us on November 30 as we culminate our 30th Anniversary celebration at the Visionaries Awards to be held at the historic Theatre at Ace Hotel. You will have the opportunity to meet all 30 of these exceptional alumni whose leadership has inspired action, collaboration and positive community outcomes.

To learn more about how you can invest in the future leaders of our region and state, please contact me (213.580.7577).  Together we will inspire leaders and drive change for the next 30 years!