Submitted by Leadership San Juan Islands
Leadership San Juan Islands is proud to announce the graduation of their 16th cohort. The ceremony took place on Zoom on Friday, May 15, with a group of 12 graduates. Cohort XVI will hold a special place in LSJI history as being the first that faced the challenge of finishing their course online, under the COVID-19 quarantine. The group rose to the challenge, finding ways to connect and learn new leadership and community service skills in spite of their isolation.
LSJI is a countywide tuition-based program designed to educate and motivate community members interested in developing their professional leadership skills and to facilitate their learning about issues affecting San Juan County. On April 30, 2004, a handful of civic-minded islanders gathered to found a program that would increase our community’s ability to govern itself as it respond to 21st century opportunities and challenges. Modeling the course after leadership programs offered throughout the country, the founders established Leadership San Juan Islands with the ambitious goal of ensuring that “the future of the islands will be decided in the islands.” Now, more than ever, local leadership and self-sufficiency is important to the health and sustainability of our island communities.
The 12 graduates have completed a professional development program comprising 11 days (including four on Zoom) across Orcas, Lopez, and San Juan Islands, studying the government, ecology, economics, arts, history, and social services of the Islands. Students have further developed their leadership and public speaking skills, and have delved into some of the important issues facing our island archipelago. Students have also earned course credit through an important partnership with Skagit Valley College.
Sponsoring organizations: Dancing Seeds Farm; Gourmet Galley; Islanders Bank; Island Market; Lions Club of San Juan Island; Lopez Island Prevention Coalition; OPALCO; Port of Friday Harbor; SAFE San Juans; San Juan County Conservation District/Firewise;San Juan County Economic Development Council; San Juan Island Community Foundation; San Juan Island Grange; and the San Juan Islands Visitors Bureau.
Congratulations to Leadership San Juan Island Cohort XVI!
San Juan Island
Mickey von Dassow
For more information about how to get involved with LSJI, visit www.lsji.org.