Why We Loved the Leadership Academy

“The Healthy Communities Leadership Academy (HCLA) opened my eyes to many pressing issues and presented a clear understanding of how to best influence the decisions being implemented.”– John Ebneter, graduate of the 2013 HCLA.

Committee for Green Foothills is proud to be a sponsor of this year’s Healthy Communities Leadership Academy (HCLA), a 9-month advocacy training program for emerging and existing local leaders who want to make our region a more environmentally-sustainable and socially-just place.

Two graduates of last year’s class, John Ebneter and Adam Turréy,were kind enough to share some of the ways the academy has impacted them, both personally and professionally as agents of change in our community.

John Ebneter told us that “The program was a very positive experience for me. The sessions taught me how to make a difference at the local level.” For John, the training was crucial in helping “to not only understand the issues, but also hone my skill set in being able to work collaboratively with city staff and elected-officials.”

John was recently appointed to the new San Mateo Sustainable Commission, and beleives that “the HCLA was definitely helpful in not only garnering this position, but continues to be instrumental to my dealings not only with the city staff but also with the public at large.” But gaining the skills to obtain and be successful in this position is not what John considers to be the main outcome of taking part in the HCLA. According to John,  the last, but “not least important benefit of the program, was building new and lasting relationships with 30 other community activists. This truly was priceless.”

We also heard from Adam Turréy, who’s current serving on the Board of Directors with Keep Oakland Beautiful, an organization with the mission of creating and sustaining a beautiful, clean, green, litter-free city through education, community engagement and volunteer action. Adam said that he felt “very fortunate to have been accepted to partake in the HCLA for several reasons, such as “the opportunity to network with aspiring community advocates and the chance to develop my own personal community engagement skills.”

Most importantly for Adam, the HCLA served as a way to “combine my passions (environmental & sustainable community development) with tested community engagement skills passed down from colleagues and weekly guest speakers.” Adam encourages “anyone with ideas on how to make our communities more sustainable who wants to engage with other like-minded individuals to apply.”

All of us at Committee for Green Foothills are excited to be part of this important program, and look forward to helping bring together more inspiring and talented individuals like John and Adam.

For more information or to apply: please see our Healthy Communities Leadership Academy webpage or contact CGF’s Executive Director, Megan Medeiros ([email protected] or 650-968-7243 x360). Applications are due July 15, 2014.

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