Leadership Skagit class of 2019 ready for graduation

Thursday, June 06, 2019

Main News Photo

ANACORTES -- The Leadership Skagit class of 2019 graduation ceremony featuring keynote speaker James Finley, Seattle University volleyball head coach, is set for 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. June 12 at Swinomish Casino and Lodge.

The annual celebration of leadership in our community recognizes the accomplishments of this year’s class. Register here.

The keynote segment includes a speech and special conversation with Finley, who is entering his seventh season as head coach of the Redhawks. Finley focuses his student athletes on community service, equity and social justice, and athletic and academic excellence.

His keynote will include a conversation and question and answer session with EDASC CEO John Sternlicht as the interviewer, which promises to be entertaining because the two have been married since June 2010.

Sternlicht said it’s been rewarding and fun spending time with this year’s class.

“I’m excited to share the graduation with them and look forward even more to seeing the great work they do in the community in the future using all they’ve learned,” he said.

Five Leadership Skagit cohorts collaborated with local community partners to accomplish five passion projects, which will be presented from 1 to 3 p.m. June 11 at McIntyre Hall Performing Arts & Conference Center.

Below are basic summaries of the five projects.

A Force for Change: The team identified areas in classrooms at Children of the Valley in need of refreshment, adding new furniture, décor and storage space. They also raised money to buy technology and marketing materials.

Intentional Optimism: The team helped install three galvanized troughs at the Anacortes Family Center’s backyard and added drainage rock in the bottom, filling them with soil. Herbs, fruits, vegetables and flowers were planted, and a package of comfort items was developed for clients.

The Evergreens: The team identified several problem areas in Friendship House shelters and successfully transformed the men’s and women’s livins spaces to improve security, comfort and aesthetics.

Royal Knights: The team’s plan includes improving the Kulshan Neighborhood Station by developing a fenced garden space where community members can learn organic gardening practices, installing better lighting for safety, creating an outdoor gathering and learning area, and more.

Team Syzygy: The team worked with the Sedro-Woolley Downtown Association to develop the StartUp Sedro-Woolley Program, a free training program for aspiring entrepreneurs.

Leadership Skagit is a program that brings together emerging and current leaders from business, government and the nonprofit world. Its intensive 9-month curriculum combines leadership skill assessment and development with in-depth information, study and discussion on topics critical to the future of our region.

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