My Leadership Worcester Experience
By Nina T. Dow, Esq., LL.M.- Mountain, Dearborn & Whiting LLP

My Leadership Worcester year (Class of 2021) was a truly wonderful experience – a unique experience that I would not have had but for the program.

I grew up in Gardner, Massachusetts and I attended Notre Dame Academy in Worcester.  I currently practice trust and estate in downtown Worcester. One would think I know Worcester well, but my tenure in the Leadership Worcester program lent a different story.

My experience with Leadership Worcester helped me grow socially, professionally, and academically.  As a young professional working in the city, it has become difficult to make friends – everyone is busy with work and their families. Fortunately, Leadership Worcester was like being in graduate school again, socially speaking. It was a new chance to meet other young professionals and see them on a regular basis. It was easier to bond with others through the opportunities that were presented to us in the program. Groups of us quickly became not only classmates, but friends, and would frequently extend our Leadership Worcester day by grabbing dinner and drinks at local restaurants in Worcester. Even now, almost two years after graduation, we are involved with each other’s work projects and volunteer when we can. We also show support by attending each other’s professional events.

My professional network has also widened as a Leadership Worcester alum – you are exposed to more opportunities through the Chamber of Commerce and through Leadership Worcester classmates.  For example, I was given the opportunity to promote my practice on the Chamber’s radio show – a chance I would not have had if I were not a Leadership Worcester participant. Leadership Worcester was also an educational experience for me. I do not have a background in politics or government but fortunately, I was blessed to have an amazing group of very dedicated and involved classmates who held positions in local government or nonprofits. I wanted to learn more about the political structure in Worcester and so my classmates offered to hold an extra session for me to teach me about local politics and identify key leaders helping me understand how their roles benefit Worcester.

Equally important was the opportunity to learn so much about the history of Worcester and the important challenges the city currently faces. I’ll continue to be involved with the city and support my Leadership Worcester classmates’ professional and personal endeavors along the way as they have supported me. Leadership Worcester gave me a new lens through which to view the place I have called home since birth. Expect to get to know ‘the WOO’ as you’ve never known her before and do so with a group of talented individuals committed to Worcester’s vibrant future.  Leadership Worcester is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, and I am grateful for its existence – take advantage of it!