Leadership Howard County (LHC) empowers and connects leaders to strengthen and transform the community. In monthly full-day sessions that include site visits, presentations and dialogues with key decision-makers, participants get a behind-the-scenes look at how the county works, what the challenges are and how to access vital resources to advance their leadership potential.

The program emphasizes experiential learning, allowing participants to get a broad overview of Howard County’s resources and challenging them to the business, government, education and nonprofit environments.

Kickoff Session: An opportunity for classmates to meet each other and get a general overview of Howard County: its history and demographics, as well as some of the current issues facing the county.

Two-Day Retreat: Designed to help participants increase awareness about their leadership style and build bonds with classmates through team-building exercises.

Living and Learning in
Howard County:
• Caring for our Community: An overview of human service delivery in the county: the opportunities and realities of living in Howard County as well as how local government and nonprofit organizations work in partnership to serve community needs.
• Health Care in Howard County: A look at the variety of systems for the delivery of health care in the community.
• Lifelong Learning: An exploration of current issues facing the Howard County Public Schools, and an opportunity to see and experience other sources of continuing and alternative learning for all ages.

Conducting Business in Howard County: An in-depth look at what it takes to get a business to locate and thrive in Howard County. Site visits with local business leaders provide an opportunity to learn about the visions and challenges.

Governing in Howard County:
• State Level: In Annapolis, participants meet members of the Howard County State Delegation, the governor and other state officials. This is an exclusive opportunity to gain insight into how the legislative process works, speak with elected officials, and learn about timely and important issues being addressed by state legislators.
• County Government: Officials from the Howard County government provide insights into factors that shape the county budget process, legislative and judicial concerns and other county functions.

Safety in the Community: A behind-the-scenes look at the many safety-related organizations that work in cooperation to keep the community safe. Participants learn about the challenges they face and experience first-hand some of the safety training provided to first responders.

Livable Community: An exploration of the various housing options available for seniors, as well as low- and moderate-income and disabled individuals; and a deep dive into some of the critical issues raised over the past year, with an opportunity to consider if Howard County is truly a “Livable Community” for all.

Community Impact Projects: Throughout the program, class members work in teams on a Community Impact Project (CIP), which has been an integral part of the Leadership experience since 2011. These projects are requested by nonprofits and community organizations that are seeking help with a specific challenge and that agree to work with the project team to come up with workable solutions.

At the conclusion of the program in May and June, the Leadership teams present their recommendations to their host organizations. As an overall part of the Leadership program, this exercise provides an opportunity for class members to gain a better understanding of community needs and a deeper appreciation for community involvement.

Taking Your Place: As class members prepare to graduate in June, they are challenged to consider their future leadership roles in the community. Processing the knowledge they have gained and relationships formed over the previous year, participants are asked to consider their next steps in ongoing community engagement and citizenship. As alumni of Leadership Howard County, members continue to build strong relationships in the community and actively participate in many of the nonprofit boards, commissions and volunteer organizations that support a vibrant and dynamic quality of life.