Leadership Iowa Travels to Fort Dodge for Education Session Dec. 5-6

December 3, 2019

Forty leaders from across the state will visit Fort Dodge on Dec. 5-6 to take part in Iowa’s premier issues awareness program, Leadership Iowa. During the intensive two-day session, they will explore the trends, initiatives and challenges of education in our state.

Participants will also gain insight into topics such as K-12 and higher education funding with Shawn Snyder of the Iowa Association of School Boards and Mark Wiederspan of Iowa College Aid Commission. Insight into K-12 will be discussed with Matt Wagner of the Fort Dodge Community School Board, Justin Daggett of Manson Northwest Webster Schools, Mary Gibb of Saint Edmond Catholic Schools and Senator Tim Kraayenbrink. The group will visit Fort Dodge Community Middle School with Fort Dodge Community Schools Superintendent Dr. Jesse Ulrich and Trinity Regional Medical Center’s simulation lab.

On Thursday, Dec. 5, the class will join Fort Dodge community and industry leaders to hear from Iowa Department of Education Director Dr. Ryan Wise for a Connecting Statewide Leaders event. Wise will provide an in-depth look at Iowa’s educational landscape.

The group will be on Iowa Central Community College’s East Campus on Friday, Dec. 6 to discuss the ‘State of Higher Education’ with Dr. Vernon Hurte of Iowa State University, Jenae Jenison of Central College and Dr. Stacey Mentzer of Iowa Central Community College. They will also explore the variety of business-education initiatives taking place through Iowa Central, the STEM Advisory Council and more. 

Local planning team members include Jen Crimmins (Citizens Community Credit Union), Afton Holt (CornerPost Marketing), Jill Nelson (Greater Fort Dodge Growth Alliance), Cheryl O’Hern (Spin Markket + Digital) and Ryan Smith (Kingsgate Insurance). Crimmins, Holt, O’Hern and Smith are former participants of the Leadership Iowa program. Additional planning members included program alumni Adriana Johnson (Collins Aerospace, Des Moines) and Stephanie Bredman (Kirkwood Community College, Cedar Rapids).

The session is sponsored by Hy-Capacity; Greater Fort Dodge Growth Alliance; Great Western Bank; Citizen Community Credit Union; C&S Products Company, Inc.; Fort Dodge Convention and Visitors Bureau; Kingsgate Insurance; Northwest Bank; CIPCO; ISG; McKee, Voorhees, and Sease PLC; and ITC Midwest. The presenting annual program sponsor is EMC Insurance.

The Class of 2019-20 will graduate in June at the Iowa Association of Business and Industry (ABI) Taking Care of Business Conference. The Leadership Iowa program is eight sessions with rotating topics and locations each year, Fort Dodge last visited in 2013-14. Since its inception in 1982, Leadership Iowa has over 1,200 alums from both the private and public sector, taking their experiences in the program back to their communities and companies.