Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce and the Greater Worcester Community Foundation Announce the Leadership Worcester Class of 2017

Worcester, Massachusetts—The Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce, the Greater Worcester Community Foundation, and the Leadership Worcester Advisory Committee announce the selection of 27 talented professionals. They will comprise the Leadership Worcester Class of 2017.

Members of the Leadership Worcester Class of 2017 are: Che Anderson, Sandra Brock, Liz Sheehan Castro, Peter Caruso, Jr., Alex Cruz, Micki Davis, Jared Fiore, Kwesi Foster, Laura Glaser, Andrea Gossage, Patrick Hare, Sam Kenary, Emily Kent, Jamie Leehy, Jessica Morris, David Murphy, Lauren Petit, Jake Poplaski, Jason Port, Sarah Potrikus, Stacey Price, Peter Rawinski, Giselle Rivera-Flores, Benjamin Rivest, Jeannette Roach, Cornelius Rogers, and Elizabeth Wambui.

Selected from more than 40 applicants, the class includes a diverse group of 14 women and 13 men from Central Massachusetts. The rigorous application process included an online application, a video, and recommendations. The selection committee sought motivated individuals who aspire to take an active leadership role in Worcester. This class includes surrounding towns and anyone who wants to learn and hone new leadership skills. Selected applicants were notified in May.

Retreat in the planning

The Class of 2017 represents a variety of industry sectors, cultural backgrounds, and diverse educational experiences. Participants are affiliated with the following organizations or employers: American Red Cross of Central Mass., Central Mass. Workforce Investment Board, Clark University, City of Worcester, Commerce Bank, Bowditch & Dewey, EcoTarium, The Hanover Insurance Group, The Hanover Theatre for the Performing Arts, Lamoureux, Pagano & Associates Architects, The Learning Hub, MCPHS University, Mirick O’Connell, Morgan Stanley, National Grid, Niche Hospitality Group, Nitsch Engineering, Reliant Medical Group, Inc., Saint-Gobain Abrasives, Sustainable Comfort, Unum, Webster Five, Worcester County Food Bank, and Worcester State University.

The class will get underway on September 9, 2016, with an overnight retreat at the Beechwood Hotel. This will offer participants an opportunity to get to know one another. Also, to determine individual leadership strengths and learn more about participants’ experiences. Most importantly, it will help them understand more about the Worcester community and the diversity of its emerging leadership.

Downtown development first topic to tackle

Monthly sessions will explore topics that are critical to Central Mass. The first session, Community and Economic Development, will begin October 13. It will familiarize participants with Worcester’s efforts to develop its downtown and neighborhoods.

The daylong sessions will take place between 8:30 a.m. and 4:15 p.m. on the second Thursday of the month from October through April. This will culminate in graduation in May 2017. Additional session topics include: Urban Environment and Sustainability; Diversity, Inclusion and Equity; Education and Youth Development; Arts, Culture and Quality of Life; and Justice, Law, and Community Safety.

“Leadership Worcester has exceeded our expectations with regard to the level of excitement of the participants and the great reception by community leaders,” said Timothy P. Murray, President and CEO, Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce. “Last year’s participants gained invaluable information about the community. They really solidified as a group. This year should be no different. With so many applicants, young professionals are clearly eager to learn about and contribute to their community. Their unique perspectives and experiences, combined with course content, will position them to become change makers and to help our city in many ways.”

“With the selection of this outstanding class of 27 motivated and dedicated professionals, the program is ready to begin. We cannot wait to see what happens. These talented individuals are eager to learn and make a difference in their – and our – community,” said Ann Lisi, President, Greater Worcester Community Foundation.

Applications for the next class will be available online in February 2017. For more information, visit www.leadershipworcester.com