Great Leaders Workshop Series

We believe that everyone is leading. Whether you are leading yourself or leading an organization, you are making decisions daily about how to show up, how to serve others, and how you want to engage in the community. The Great Leaders Workshop Series brings together local subject matter experts with a wealth of collective expertise, this monthly workshop series covers a variety of topics designed to elevate your leadership and help you become a truly Great Leader!

Tuesdays, 8:30 – 11 a.m. Individual dates listed with session descriptions below. Doors open at 8 a.m. with coffee and light refreshments served.

Location: Heartland Bank Corporate Center
430 N. Hamilton Road
Whitehall, OH 43213

Individual Session $125

Questions? Contact Collin Ries, Program & Marketing Manager at

Fall Series Workshops

Becoming Your Brand

October 18, 2022, 8:30-11 a.m.
Gabrielle Solange, Runsong Studios
Early Bird Registration Deadline: Friday, September 30

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Your personal brand: it’s about how to allow who we are to shine through what we do, and how make sure what we do is continuously developing who we are while inspiring and attracting others! But what does it mean to brand ourselves today in this generation and in an age of social media? Join us to learn how to workshop and enhance the language and tools we use to define and promote what we do; to balance vulnerability with professionalism; and to explore how purpose plays into productivity.

Building a Culture of Interrogation: A Journey toward DEIA

November 15, 2022, 8:30-11 a.m.
Shannon Lee, Karen Hewitt, Collin Ries, Leadership Columbus
Early Bird Registration Deadline: Friday, November 4

Join us to learn how one nonprofit organization went about creating a culture of interrogation, community accountability, equity, and belonging. This workshop will explore individual and collective interrogation of oppressive systems that we live in and systems that live inside of us. Participants will leave with ways to emotionally explore DEIA work as well as tangible tools to apply at the individual and organizational level.

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Shannon Lee (she/her) is the Executive Director at Leadership Columbus with a drive to help current and aspiring leaders achieve their personal and professional aims. Her work at Leadership Columbus includes leading strategic direction as Leadership Columbus embarks on a new chapter. Shannon plans to build on Leadership Columbus and the Signature Program’s strong legacy while adding programs that further the mission to ‘develop, connect and inspire diverse leaders who serve as catalysts in building a healthy and vibrant community.’ Her favorite part of leadership is working with a team and helping them achieve beyond what they thought possible for themselves.

Karen (Ze/Hir/Hirs and She/Her/Hers) is the Associate Director for Leadership Columbus. She is committed to doing the work of building connection, belonging, and community. Ze is a non-negotiable stand for the most marginalized and the dignity and value of every human life. Her professional reach is vast and includes competency and expertise in Leadership Development, Anti-Racism Facilitation, Transformative Justice Approaches, Poetry, Writing, Music, Comedy, and overall performance. Karen is seen as a necessary contribution at various community tables and conversations and is both celebrated and respected for her ability to be strategic in navigating difficult and nuanced conversations and barriers in a brave and productive way.


Collin Ries (he/him) serves as the Program & Marketing Manager for Leadership Columbus. He manages Leadership Columbus’s marketing and social media presence, as well as providing programming and administrative support for the Leadership Columbus team. He is also the staff lead on the newly launched Nonprofit Board Governance Training. A Columbus native, Collin holds a Master’s in Nonprofit Administration from John Carroll University and a Bachelor’s in Evolution and Ecology from The Ohio State University, as well as Certificate of Nonprofit Board Consulting from BoardSource.

Your Board Service “Why”

December 13, 2022, 8:30-11 a.m.
Kerri Mollard, Mollard Consulting
Early Bird Registration Deadline: Friday, November 25

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The decision on which board to join can be daunting, and for those who are diverse candidates, the pressure can be intense. Through reflective practice, participants will determine which organizations to serve and how that service aligns with personal and professional goals and values; your personal board service “why”. The four “why” questions center around alignment with a) advocacy/passion, b) expertise/organizational needs, c) giving back/personal time and resources, and d) leadership/company priorities. Participants will also be given a list of “dos and don’ts” to use as they navigate the board recruitment process. Nonprofits are essential for a healthy society, and that board service matters and attendees will leave better prepared to be an effective board candidate.

Kerri Laubenthal Mollard is the Founder and CEO of Mollard Consulting, LLC. Mollard is a respected authority on nonprofit board governance, planning and fundraising, and has served hundreds of nonprofits since founding the company in 2003. Prior to consulting, she worked in positions as varied as public relations coordinator, box office manager, development director and executive director. She has a master’s degree from Indiana University, a bachelor’s degree from The Ohio State University and a Certificate of Nonprofit Board Consulting from BoardSource. Since January 2022 she is an elected official as well, serving as Plain Township Trustee.

Past Workshops

Leading Softly: Cultivating Spaces for Rest, Healing, and Thriving

Facilitator: Erin Upchurch, The Ohio REST Collective

Leading Softly explores transformational leadership through the frameworks of trauma sensitivity and healing. Leaders will have the opportunity to explore their own leadership style and identify areas of expansion.

Why should you attend? Attendees will increase understanding of their own leadership style and identify areas of expansion through the frameworks of trauma sensitivity and healing centered practice. Those who attend will also understand the practice of radical softness as it relates to transformational leadership.

Altar in the World: How Leaders Can Create Safe Space for Authenticity/Joy/Healing at Home, at Work, and in Relationship

Facilitator: LC Johnson, Zora’s House

What does it look like for leaders to create spaces of wholeness, joy, and authenticity in our day-to-day lives? What does it look like to center ‘self’ during a seemingly never-ending pandemic and while navigating our intersecting roles as leaders, parents, friends, partners, coworkers, and employees? During this session, we will: discuss the conscious and unconscious lessons we’ve learned about prioritizing ourselves; share the people, places, and things that make us feel whole and joyful; and proactively design physical/emotional/spiritual “altars” to ground us in our journeys as leaders and whole people.

Why should you attend? Attendees will explore conscious and unconscious beliefs about selfishness and self-care. They will engage in discussions about the role of authenticity, joy, and self-care as a critical part of leadership and social change movements. Finally, participants will have the opportunity to create concrete plans and practices for incorporating radical self-care and authenticity in our day-to-day lives and leadership.

Understanding Behavior: Learn Why Employees Behave The Way They Do

Facilitator: Adam McCampbell & Lisa Miller, The Relevant Workplace

This workshop covers the four vital human drives and how understanding these human drives helps us meet the needs of employees and co-workers. The interplay between drives and needs then allows us to improve communication and collaboration, build effective teams, hire and retain the best talent and improve workplace culture. Please note: This workshop includes a complimentary Predictive Index Assessment for the attendee and one additional person. The attendees must take the assessment prior to the workshop; the additional person is optional.

Why should you attend? Attendees will better understand that employees have different needs based on their drives and how leaders need to meet these needs as often as possible.
Attendees will gain self-awareness as to how they show up to work and will leave feeling equipped to better communicate to employees. They will understand areas where they may need to stretch their personal leadership style to get better results.

Sticking Your Neck Out Without Losing Your Head

Facilitator: Lora Fish, Applegate Talent Strategies

Not speaking up can lead to resentment, limit your effectiveness on a team, prevent you from performing your best, and hold back your career. In this two-hour workshop, learn the importance of mastering the art of speaking up. Leave with specific tips that will build the confidence you need to bring your best self to work. Would you like to feel more confident about speaking up in front of a group…or even with your own boss? Most of us have been embarrassed by what we have…or haven’t said.

Why should you attend? Attendees will have the opportunity to complete a Communication Skills Self-Assessment during this workshop. Additionally, attendees will learn how to shift mindsets and what steps to take to mentally prepare, what to say and how to say it and even how to complain more effectively. Those who attend will understand how differences in personality, gender, and race influence behaviors that impact our “gravitas.”

Moving Beyond Adaptive Strategies for Surviving: Racial Equity and Thriving

Facilitator: Suzanne Roberts, Unifying Solutions

This workshop provides a neuroscience framework around how our living organism and our psychobiology intelligently responds to threats and/or fractures to safety, connection, belonging and/or dignity. These responses happen below cognition and get practiced over time to have surviving as the baseline of living.

Why should you attend? Attendees will learn their unique survival strategies, and how to interrupt the habit of surviving-reacting-recovering. A new baseline will emerge to organize strategies for living that move participants from surviving to thriving in alignment with their moral imperatives. This new reference means leaders can become self-determining in how they respond and lead to make a difference in the world and in their own lives.

Creating Change and Doing Good

Facilitator: Ken Schneck, Baldwin Wallace University

Never has the clarion call to “do good” been heard more loudly than in our current landscape. But the gap between wanting to do good and doing good is one that leaders have been struggling through for as long as there has been this tricky concept called leadership.

Why should you attend? Whether you want to create a new nonprofit, pack the house for a change-making event, or just get your brand more ‘out there’, this workshop will help you define your voice, hone your idea of “doing good,” and market your attempt to create change. This highly interactive workshop will strengthen your approach to doing good and build your confidence…guaranteed.

Employee Engagement: Why You Need It, How to Get It

Facilitator: Andrea Applegate, Applegate Talent Strategies

Employee engagement is essential for effective teams and productive workplaces. (Said another way, without engagement, an effective team or a productive workplace is impossible to obtain.) Levels of employee engagement can be measured via surveys of motivation and morale as well as through business metrics like high turnover, excessive absenteeism, and low productivity. Despite its “measurability,” employee engagement is elusive. Many teams and workplaces place responsibility for engagement with the HR department. Others turn to the social committee as the solution to increase engagement. While hosting birthday celebrations and outings to the ballpark are fun activities–and we should keep doing them–they have no meaningful impact on employees’ actual engagement.

Why should you attend? You will learn what employee engagement is and how it impacts teams and organizations. Stop defaulting to myth and misunderstanding about employee engagement and know how to explain what effective engagement really is. You’ll leave this workshop ready to recognize the influence employee engagement has as a ratchet on organizational outcomes!

Unpacking Racism:  The long road to racial thriving, equity, belonging, and inclusion

Facilitator: Suzanne Roberts & Karen Hewitt, Unifying Solutions

This workshop will focus on the history and challenges around racism in an engaging environment where participants unpack some of the hardest questions faced around the topic at hand.  Participants will identify how systemic racism operates through policies, practices, and organizational structures as well as through civic engagement and how this has been embedded since the beginning of our country.

Why should you attend? White participants will learn that being a good person and having anti-racism philosophy is not what the work is – it is owning the ideological frameworks that white people have inherited, like it or not, that needs to constantly be unpacked and dismantled. Since BIPOC people do not have the opportunity to opt out, what is the moral imperative that keeps white people engaged in the work for the long haul? And for BIPOC people, how to interrupt being complicit with the messaging that is broadcast constantly about their lack of value and being less human than white people, to thrive and become BLACK Excellence.

LGBTQIA+/Queer Leadership Strategies: Leading Out Proud

Facilitator: Densil Porteous, Executive Director, Stonewall Columbus

Queer identities have had to hide in plain sight. In business, this is often referred to as a silent identity. Until the 2020 Bostock ruling, where the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in a 6–3 decision that discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity is necessarily also discrimination “because of sex” as prohibited by Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, queer identities could legally be fired for simply living their truth. And while there are, and have been, a great many LGBTQIA+ identities that have led and guided organizations—few have always felt empowered to lead out proud!

Why should you attend? You will leave this session feeling empowered to lead authentically with your queer identity or be able to encourage other queer identities to lead authentically.

ABIDE2 (Acceptance, Belonging, Inclusion, Diversity, Equity and Engagement)

Lachandra Baker, Senior Director, Employee Engagement and DEI, National Church Residences

There’s a new normal in the world of workplace engagement. Employees are demanding more autonomy, flexibility, and inclusivity. To stay competitive in the ever-changing job marketplace, employers must develop a compelling employee value proposition and employment strategy to attract, develop, and retain high potential, high performing talent.

Why should you attend? You will learn how to engage with employees in a more meaningful way by advocating on behalf of your employees and co-workers. This session builds upon the previous employee engagement session by adding layers related to the impact of personal and professional relationships, the concept of “additive workplace culture” and embodying inclusive behaviors.

Navigating Emotions at Work and Beyond

Facilitators: Jim & Lynette Vaive, Spirit of EQ

Emotional Intelligence (EQ) has become a buzzword that can easily stay theoretical. How can we learn to practice EQ, and how can that make a difference in the way each of us connects with others at work and elsewhere? How can I use emotions for my own benefit and that of others around me to improve my professional and personal outcomes?

Why should you attend? You will learn to notice emotions and the role they play in your workday which will help you understand how to choose an intentional response vs. reacting unintentionally. These learnings will in turn help you better connect with your colleagues as human beings and feel more connected to self as well.