• Leadership Natchitoches

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  • Leadership Natchitoches is an immersive learning program for proven leaders in our community that engages and activates these individuals to effect change in Natchitoches Parish. This diverse group of professionals becomes one class and one voice through the course of the program, which focuses on these key areas:

    Education • Workforce Development • Cultural Diversity • Historical Relevance • Tourism • Government & Governance • Healthcare • Poverty • Economic Development • Business & Industry • Art & Culture • Criminal Justice System • Law Enforcement • Infrastructure • Natural Resources

    Leadership Natchitoches gives graduates first-hand knowledge of the issues facing our region and the potential for a positive community impact through volunteerism and civic engagement. The program consists of eight sessions that include an evening team-building social and a full-day of experiential learning. Leadership Natchitoches participants are recognized at a graduation ceremony.

    Applications for our 2024 (Year 5) sessions are now closed!



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    Each session will be preceded by a Thursday evening session (5:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.), and Friday sessions (8:15 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.) will last a full workday. The curriculum for this program is designed to use a variety of resources and learning techniques. 


    Session One: Launching into Leadership: Opening Retreat – February 15-16, 2024

    Session Description: Kickstart your leadership journey with a deep dive into team-building, self-awareness, and goal-setting. This retreat sets the stage for the experience ahead. 

    Session Two: Where History Lives: Natchitoches History, Culture & Tourism – March 21-22, 2024

    Session Description: Explore the rich tapestry of Natchitoches, from its historical landmarks to its vibrant culture. Learn how tourism impacts our community and how you can be a part of it.

    Session Three: Naturally Great: Natural Resources  – April 25-26, 2024

    Session Description: Discover the natural assets that make Natchitoches unique. From our waterways to our landscapes, understand how these resources contribute to our economy and quality of life. 

    Session Four: We Make Good Stuff: Business and Industry  – May 30-31, 2024

    Session Description: Get an inside look at the businesses and industries that power Natchitoches. Learn what it takes to succeed and how you can contribute to our economic growth. 

    Session Five: Together We Can: Education and Workforce  – June 27-28, 2024

    Session Description: Delve into the educational landscape and workforce development in Natchitoches. Understand the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead and how we can work together to address them.

    Session Six: Progress & Pitfalls: Healthcare and Public Safety  – July 25-26, 2024

    Session Description: Examine the state of healthcare and public safety in our community. Learn about the advancements we've made and the hurdles we still need to overcome.

    Session Seven: Be the Leader: Government & Governance  – August 22-23, 2024

    Session Description: Understand the inner workings of local government and governance. Learn how decisions are made, how policies are set, and how you can make a difference.

    Session Eight: Forward Together: Sustaining Our Leadership Community  – September 26-27, 2024

    Session Description: Leadership is a collective endeavor. This session aims to keep the spirit of community alive, discussing ways to stay connected, support each other, and collaborate on future projects that make a difference in Natchitoches. 


    Nominees are accepted from public and private agencies, corporations, civic and other organizations, and individual nominators. Applicants are accepted on the basis of demonstrated leadership ability through career or community achievements, concern for the future of the Natchitoches Area and commitment to the program. Applications are solicited annually in October. A selection committee of Community and Chamber leaders will recommend 15 to 20 candidates, based on a diverse cross-section of the community in terms of occupation, gender, race, age and affiliations.


    Leadership Natchitoches devotes one full Friday per month to hear presentations from subject matter experts and participate in discussions, field trips and practical exercises pertinent to six key community issues: history, culture & tourism, natural resources, business & industry, education & workforce, healthcare & public safety, and government & governance. Participants must agree and adhere to Leadership Natchitoches Policies and Procedures in order to apply to and graduate from the program and be recognized at the graduation ceremony. The kick-off session in March is mandatory. No more than one absence is allowed from April-October.

    Tuition for Leadership Natchitoches is $800. Limited scholarship funds are available upon request.