Lead and Succeed webinar series continues leadership development discussion

by Russell Shaffer | Rural Prosperity Nebraska

a woman participates in a leadership workshop
A woman joins in the discussion during the Leadership Chautauqua held in Kearney in 2023. Photo by Russell Shaffer
June 19, 2024

Lincoln, Neb. — Rural Prosperity Nebraska, the community development arm of Nebraska Extension, announces the inaugural session of its “Lead and Succeed Lunchbox Series,” a summer-long webinars series focused on revamping community leadership development in rural communities. The first session will take place on June 27.

With topics addressing leadership roles as well as leadership systems within communities, the webinars’ audiences include current community leaders, those who wish to take on leadership roles within their communities, and those simply interested in engaging more in their towns.

“Leadership development is crucial to the survival of rural communities,” said Tyler Quick, the Rural Prosperity Nebraska Extension instructor overseeing the webinars. “As communities continue to navigate new challenges, it is increasingly more important that they have people with the skills and leadership to help find modern solutions.”

The webinar series is a follow-up to the Leadership Chautauqua event that Rural Prosperity Nebraska hosted in Kearney last year, in which approximately 120 community leaders from Nebraska and Iowa came together for a day of think-tank-style discussions aimed at reshaping community leadership development by focusing on innovative strategies and collaborative approaches.

Quick said attendees at the Chautauqua wished to continue to engage in networking opportunities where they could learn more from peers. These webinars aim to continue those discussions.

“Community leaders can no longer rely on traditional leadership practices,” said Lindsay Hastings, a professor in the Agricultural Leadership, Education and Communication department, who also lead the Chautauqua event in November. “The U.S. is experiencing one of the largest transfers of wealth and leadership in its history due to Baby Boomer retirements. Resilience within rural communities will be markedly impacted by such transitions, bringing vitality or destruction. Creating capacity for resilient communities demands new ways of thinking about and practicing community leadership development that considers both global realities and local norms.”

Facilitated by Rural Prosperity Nebraska Extension educators, the three webinars will each focus on a different facet of the leadership development discussion. “Encouraging Collective Leadership” will explore redefining community leadership as a collaborate effort, rather than an individual one. “Addressing the ‘Who’s Missing?’ Question” will focus on expanding engagement beyond traditional business leaders to include newer residents and diverse groups. “Promoting Organizational and Regional Partnerships” will help increase awareness of available resources from universities and regional institutions, tailoring programs to community needs.

“We’re hoping these webinars equip community leaders to be a catalyst in their communities to bring about positive change,” said Quick. “By addressing the community leadership issue, we hope to see a rippling effect benefitting communities in more ways.”

The webinar schedule is as follows:

June 27
12:30-1:30 p.m. CT
Topic: Encouraging Collective Leadership

July 25
12:30-1:30 p.m. CT
Topic: Addressing the “Who’s Missing?” Question

Aug. 29
12:30-1:30 p.m. CT
Topic: Promoting Organizational and Regional Partnerships 

All webinars are free and can be accessed at the links above. No registration fee or advanced registration is required to attend. 

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Agricultural Leadership