Locate South GeorgiaLEADS Recruiting Participants to Create Vision for South Georgia

Staff Report From Albany CEO

Monday, July 10th, 2017

Locate South Georgia is actively recruiting for participants to join their efforts in developing a strong leadership pipeline across South Georgia.  With Locate South GeorgiaLEADS, presented by Electric Cities of Georgia, recruiting the class for the 2017-2018 program, Locate South Georgia seeks to link business and civic leaders, as well as elected and public officials, to the region’s economic development agenda and efforts.
Locate South GeorgiaLEADS is a 21-county regional leadership development program for South Georgia designed in 2015 as a partnership of the Georgia Chamber of Commerce, the J.W. Fanning Institute for Leadership Development at the University of Georgia, and the region’s economic development professionals and affiliates that make up Locate South Georgia.
LSGL is particularly timely this year as the Georgia Chamber recently opened its regional office focused on rural Georgia in Tifton this past May and launched its Rural Prosperity Council to focus on the issues and priorities of rural communities around our State.  Additionally, the General Assembly continues the efforts of the Georgia Rural Development Council who are simultaneously evaluatint policy and legislative issues that will be taken up during the upcoming legislative session.
As the largest regional leadership program in the State, South Georgia is raising the bar for leadership, economic development and civic engagement for existing leaders.  LSGL is an eight-month leadership experience for leaders throughout South Georgia designed to facilitate awareness of issues that are essential to the future success of the region by giving participants the necessary skills and training needed to effectively lead South Georgia in the 21st Century economy.
With applications currently available, the program will start in August 2017 and run through March 2018.  This year’s class will join the alumni of LSGL at a kick-off retreat in Sylvester-Worth County on August 17-18.  
LSGL links regional site visits and issue awareness to relevant leadership development content within the framework of the Locate South GeorgiaLEADS priorities.  Emphasizing regional priorities throughout the program, each session directly links leadership skills training to issues of critical importance to South Georgia:

· Regional Identity & Influence
Includes creating a regional brand and identity for South Georgia that is recognized internally as well as externally, enhancing both perception and influence of the region across the State.
· Workforce Development
Includes the strategic alignment of public and private sectors—business, industry, and educational partners—to address key workforce development needs and challenges; and to increase the economic viability of South Georgia.
· Collective Visioning & Planning
Includes developing leaders who understand the changing South Georgia economy and culture; and recognize why it is essential to both think and act within a global context, working collaboratively to ensure the region’s success.
The purpose of Locate South GeorgiaLEADS is to develop informed, aware, and educated leaders to promote and grow South Georgia by:
·         Increasing awareness of assets and resources;

·         Creating a shared sense of regional pride and ownership in both action and solutions;

·         Strengthening partnerships and alliances; and

·         Enhancing political influence and acuity to support the needs and opportunities of South Georgia.
Tuition is $1,250 per participant, with scholarships available through Electric Cities of Georgia and the One Sumter Economic Development Foundation.
For more information about Locate South Georgia, please visit their website at http://www.georgiaresourcecenter.com/LocateSouthGeorgia/2/communities.html.
For more information about Locate South GeorgiaLEADS, please contact Mary Beth Bass, Executive Director, One Sumter Economic Development Foundation, Inc., at 229.815.1669; or at marybeth@onesumter.org. Interested candidates may also contact their local economic development team for further information.