David Jackson Homegrown Leaders

David Jackson, right, recently graduated from the Homegrown Leaders program. Also pictured is Brownyn Lucas, director of the Leadership for NC Rural Center.

RALEIGH — David Jackson of the Boone Area Chamber of Commerce recently graduated from the Homegrown Leaders program, a regional leadership and economic development program that develops and supports highly motivated leaders who are committed to building regional collaboration across multi-county regions in the state.

Homegrown Leaders is a program of the NC Rural Center and is sponsored by the Appalachian Regional Commission along with corporate, government and philanthropic partners. The training was held in Wilkes County Sept. 10-12.

Certificates were presented to the program’s 31 graduates on the last day of training.

“Leadership development is at the core of the Rural Center’s work; we know communities thrive when their leaders are equipped with the skills and tools to foster growth and innovation,” said Rural Center President Patrick Woodie. “We’re excited to see the impact our Homegrown Leaders graduates will have in their communities and regions.”

Class participants included economic development professionals, educators, and civic and nonprofit leaders.

“Homegrown Leaders creates a space for rural leaders to train alongside their peers from across their region, building and strengthening partnerships that reach across county lines and work toward a common vision of a thriving rural North Carolina,” said Rural Center Director of Leadership Bronwyn Lucas. “These graduates will also join the Rural Center’s collaborative leadership alumni network of more than 1,300 rural leaders across the state.”

To date, the Rural Center has provided five Homegrown Leaders trainings across the Appalachian Regional Commission’s N.C. counties with a final convening of alumni from the entire 29-county region to be held in December in Asheville. For more information, visit the Rural Center’s website ncruralcenter.org/leadership.

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