Leadership UA Testimonials
Here’s what previous class alumni have had to say about Leadership UA.
It was a genuine privilege to be a part of the Leadership UA class of 2014-2015. As a realtor, it was helpful to learn more about Upper Arlington, its traditions, and the organizations that make the community so cohesive. My classmates came from both private and public sectors and that dynamic enhanced our group’s experience. Many of us stay in touch even now, and that’s just one more benefit of the Leadership UA experience. If you’re interested in learning more about the community or figuring how and where you can get involved, I highly recommend Leadership UA.
– Carl Sofranko, Class of 2015
As the Community Engagement Specialist for the Upper Arlington Public Library, I am fortunate to be able to spend my time working with people and organizations from the Upper Arlington community. Before participating in the Leadership UA class of 2014-2015, I thought that I had a pretty strong working knowledge of our city, our schools, our library and our community organizations. During the Leadership UA program, I was often surprised by how many new things I was learning about the community in addition to learning about different leadership styles and methodologies. But for me, the most valuable part of the experience is the people. I came away from the program with a new network of people that collectively represent a broad base of knowledge. Each of these people is still willing to offer their advice, expertise or help when I need it. On a professional level, this has been a huge benefit. On a personal level, I feel such a connection to the people and the program that I am now serving on the Board of Trustees. I highly recommend this program for anybody looking to expand their knowledge of our community, develop their leadership skills, or meet new people who are committed to continuing their personal and professional development.
– Jennifer Faure, Class of 2015
I loved the Leadership UA program. It was a unique and powerful way to understand the inner workings of our city and to interact with a wide variety of civic leaders. The programming was compelling and well-organized and, and our class project resulted in a real benefit to the city. The best part was getting to know my classmates, a diverse group of individuals I now consider good friends. I have no doubt they’ll continue to be leaders in the future.
– Gregor Gilliom, Class of 2015
My experience as a part of Leadership UA helped me grow as a person, a leader, and a member of the community. The diversity and strength of my classmates introduced me to influencers in all aspects of the city of Upper Arlington and it helped form bonds of friendship and trust that I previously did not believe could exist through a program like this. The focus on development as a leader equates to a Masters level education; exposing my own personal strengths and weaknesses and relying on the trust of our class as a whole to develop strategies to become better. The strength of the program is credited to Leadership UA’s Directors and the willingness of the community leaders to educate us about the many components of a successful city. I would highly recommend this program for any professional seeking to know more about the city of Upper Arlington or those who seek to develop themselves further as a leader!
– Greg Gleaves, Class of 2015
Leadership UA is an experience I highly recommend and would gladly do again! As a new Upper Arlington resident, I was eager to give back and plug in to the community, but overwhelmed with where to start or how to get connected. Leadership UA not only streamlined this process for me with their coordinated meetings showcasing local resources, organizations, nonprofits, etc. it also gave me a platform to develop a deeper understanding and historical context about our community. This was all while fostering friendships with neighbors and working as a team to identify meaningfully ways to contribute to Upper Arlington. I’ve done more leadership development trainings and courses than I can count. Leadership UA is unique and stands out among them all. As a service and civic-minded person, walking away with greater professional and personal development on top of all the localized knowledge is something I’ll forever be grateful for. I did Leadership UA so I could give to others. I got to do that, while gaining and getting so much for myself in the process. Leadership UA is not just a program you should do… it’s one you’ll regret missing out on.
– Michaela Burriss, Class of 2016
Leadership UA is a fantastic program that fully changed my outlook on being a citizen of Upper Arlington. Through a series of community engagements throughout the city, participants are given a civic education with focus on all branches of public operations – Schools, Police, Fire, Government, Library. The immersion into the community is extremely educational, and allows for one on one communication with city leaders and employees regarding how things work in UA. I would strongly recommend LUA for anyone intending to be a long time resident of Upper Arlington. The focus on leadership theory, under the guidance of Dr. Brad Mitchell, is to examine and explore various types of communication styles, emphasizing how to maximize interpersonal engagement in a practical manner. Dr. Mitchell is captivating, charming, and one of the delights of the program. The culmination of the program is the completion of an agreed upon project to benefit the community; participants utilize leadership and communication theory previously touched upon by Dr. Mitchell when engaging with the group. Leadership UA is a unique opportunity to better your citizenship here in Upper Arlington. I greatly enjoyed the program, and hope anyone considering joining will love it as well!
-Georgia Kaltenbach, Class of 2016