Leadership Iowa: Connections for Years to Come

January 15, 2024 | ABI Survey: Cautious Optimism As 2024 Begins

As we grow through our careers, we come to recognize the valuable development opportunities available to us. From community programs and industry peer groups, to conferences, courses, and coaching – all uniquely beneficial in their own way.

We were fortunate that our own development included participating in the Leadership Iowa classes of 2018-19 and 2020-21. Through the program, we appreciated the opportunity to travel the state and visit communities we only knew by name. We were amazed to visit companies in rural Iowa towns making their mark both nationally and globally. And have you ever stood at the bottom of the Mississippi River? The class of 2020- 21 visited a drained Lock & Dam system and learned the vital role Iowa plays in transportation across the country.

Participation in Leadership Iowa afforded us unique insight, unforgettable experiences, and friendships to last a lifetime. Now, it’s our role as the Alumni CoChairs of the Leadership Iowa Board of Governors to ensure that the nine months in the program are only the beginning.

We work to engage past participants through regional socials, virtual discussions, and annual gatherings. Opportunities may be open to all alumni or Alumni Society members who choose to pay their experience forward through an annual donation. If you’re one of our 1,300+ alumni, we invite you to relive your experience in these small ways.

  • Leadership Iowa “Regional Representatives” exist in five regions throughout Iowa. At least one social event is held each quarter, and while each event may look different, the purpose is the same: to connect current and past participants for conversation and networking. This is the easiest way to get involved as an alumnus of the program. 
  • The monthly LI Connect series virtually convenes members of the Alumni Society and class to discuss Iowa-focused topics, from workforce and education to healthcare and agriculture. Attendees hear from experts in the field and have the chance to ask questions, share their own experience, and learn from others.
  • At the top of our list of annual events is the Alumni Society Dinner held in Des Moines each January. The reunion brings together 130+ alumni for fellowship and celebration. The event includes honoring a program champion as a lifetime Honorary Leadership Iowa Alumni Society Member, and awarding the year’s “Best Class Ever,” recognizing the class with the most Alumni Society members.

Participating in the Leadership Iowa program was an amazing experience both personally and professionally, and it’s an experience that doesn’t have to end after graduation. If you’re an alum, check out the Alumni page at LeadershipIowa.com and make plans to join us at an upcoming event. If you’ve not yet gone through Leadership Iowa, we encourage you to nominate yourself (or have someone nominate you) this year. It’s a gift that truly keeps on giving.