Lead • Engage • Activate • Develop • Serve

With a goal to cultivate leaders that are well-informed, well-rounded, and engaged through training, networking, and real-world experience, DeKalb LEADS, is the premier leadership opportunity driving positive change and civic engagement in DeKalb County. This 9 month program equips participants to Lead, Engage, Activate, Develop, and Serve our community. The program exposes emerging and existing community leaders to the issues that face our region while challenging and engaging participants to strengthen the community through service and leadership. With the community as their classroom, participants develop long-lasting relationships with other leaders, discover the inner workings of our community and challenges facing our community, and define their individual role and responsibility as a leader within our community.


Application + Selection Process

Each potential participant must submit a completed application, a brief video answering the given prompts, 2 letters of recommendation and a completed employer agreement. To be considered, completed applications must be received by the DeKalb Chamber Partnership by Tuesday, June 15, 2021 at 5:00 p.m. After reviewing both the application and videos, the steering committee with select a cohort. Final cohort nominees will then undergo an interview with a steering committee member. Applicants will be notified of the status of their acceptance by July 13, 2021. If accepted, tuition will be due prior to the first class session.

Please be sure to put your first initial and last name in the file name of all files uploaded. Ex. SCarpenterVideo.mp4 or SCarpenterApplication.pdf
2020/2021 LEADS Cohort at the Garrett Museum of Art with Angela Green (Museum Coordinator) and Jim Gabbard (Museum Director)

Steering Committee

Brian Best
Ambassador Enterprises

Shannon Carpenter
DeKalb Chamber Partnership

Anton King
DeKalb County Economic Development Partnership

Kendra Klink
James Foundation

Sarah Payne
DeKalb LEADS Facilitator

Jeremy Pfister
Tempus Technologies

Chris Straw
Team Quality Services

Jason Sweitzer
Tempus Technologies

Tonya Weaver
Garrett-Keyser-Butler Community School District

Tanya Young
Community Foundation DeKalb  County

LEADS Alumni

Tyler Cleverly
United Way DeKalb County

Jake Clifford*
Garrett High School

April Dobson
Trin Automotive

Rudi Eidam
Sweitzer Family Office

Larry Getts

Melissa Irk
Tempus Technologies

Brandon Park
James Foundation

Nora Schwartz
Junior Achievement

*In Memoriam