Check out what is new in LO News. Read on for:
A Word from the Executive Director

There's energy in the air. Can you feel it? If you were at last week's Taste of Leadership Oakland event, you might have noticed it. It's the unmistakable buzz of leaders throughout our region getting together, connecting and being inspired to take action. I don't know about you but I find it positively contagious!

This month's newsletter is crammed full of details of the exciting, meaningful and, yes, even fun things that happen when the smart, committed, generous people of Southeast Michigan gather together to tackle issues and celebrate success.

I'll hope you'll take a few moments to catch up on what's happening and consider how you can be a part of experiencing the Leadership Oakland (LO) Effect.

As Spring Fever gets ready to set in, be sure to also catch some of the LO energy!

BOCJJBreakfast of Champions
Joyce Jenereaux
Staying Relevant in a Noisy World

April 4, 2017 | 7:30 - 9:00 a.m
MSU Management Education Center
811 W. Square Lake Road, Troy, MI 48098

General Public $36
Leadership Oakland Alumni Association Members $32

Learn More
Cornerstone Program Informational Breakfast
Come out to learn more about the program

Wednesday, April 18, 2017 | 8:00 - 9:30 a.m.
MSU Management Education Center, 811 W. Square Lake Road, Troy
Anyone who wants to know more about the program.
To meet alumni, board members and current class members and learn why Leadership Oakland is important to them personally, professionally and publicly.
There is no cost to attend but pre-registration is requested.

Contact Carol Dendler: or call 248.952.6880 x1 
WXYZ news interview
inthenewsLeadership Oakland in the News!

Thanks to our unofficial publicist,  Mark Geary, LOXXVII, Leadership Oakland has been all over the radio and TV this month. Our Executive Director, Nancy Maurer has made the rounds talking about the Day of Service, Taste of LO, and of, course Cornerstone!

If you didn't see or hear her interviews live, check out the links below:

WXYZ Morning Show, February 28, 2017
Fox 2 Morning Show, March 28, 2017
 Early Application Deadline - April 5

Who will make up our next Cornerstone class, LOXXVIII? Don't miss the opportunity to join other leaders in expanding their leadership development. Benefits of the Cornerstone Program include but are not limited to:
  • Learn new and exciting things about Oakland County and how you can make a difference
  • Add 50+ people to your network in a meaningful way
  • Have experiences that only Leadership Oakland's Cornerstone program will bring you
  • Have access to our LO Alumni totaling more than 1,300 professionals

Applications can be emailed to or mailed to
5435 Corporate Drive, Suite 203, Troy, MI 48098
 Applications Due May 1

Jr. Leadership Oakland is the place that encourages and empowers young adults to develop their full potential through three, full-day interactive workshops.

The free program will take place on June 19-21, 2017, from 8:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m. at Oakland Community College's Auburn Hills Campus.

Program Objectives:
  • Create opportunities for students to realize their leadership potential
  • Expose students to a wide variety of career paths
  • Provide access to a network of professionals
  • Foster a commitment to community involvement
The program is free and open to all students in Metro Detroit that are entering their senior year of high school in the fall.

2017 Junior Leadership Oakland Sponsors

tasteTaste of LO, what a crowd!

Close to 300 people attended this year's Taste of Leadership Oakland event at the beautiful Townsend Hotel on March 23. The room was buzzing with connections, reunions and new acquaintances being made.

Thank you to those who supported our silent auction to benefit LO scholarships.

Congratulations to our Leader of Leaders award winners. 

Personal Leadership: Jason Paulateer, LOXXVI
Professional Leadership: Mary Mbiya, LOXXIV
Public Leadership: Tina Barton, LOXXV
The Pinnacle of Leadership: Kevin Wisely, LOXVII

And of course, special congratulations to LOXXVI for receiving official naming rights for 2017 as 'The Best Class...Ever'!

Best Class Ever 2017

Special thank you to all our sponsors!

EducationLOXXVII: Education Session

On Wednesday, March 8, LOXXVII participated in their Education session to understand the many issues facing education in our community and explore possible approaches for dealing with them.

One of the most memorable parts of the day each year is the presentation given by Joan Firestone, LOXIX with Oakland Schools on early childhood education. 

The leaders had an opportunity to visit two elementary schools; one in Pontiac and one in Rochester. Afterwords, they had a robust decision around their differences and similarities. One class member shared, "I enjoyed visiting the Pontiac and Rochester primary schools.  It was eye opening to see within a couple hours the vast differences and challenges that each entity faces." 

They finished the day with mini-sessions with industry experts in higher education. Presenters included Oakland University, Oakland Community College, Baker College and OaklandNext which is an initiative looking for ways to keep young professionals in the county.
AlumniAlumni Spotlight

Director of Resource Development & Communications
Community Housing Network

When C.J. Felton arrived for the LOXXIII retreat in September 2012, he was overwhelmed by the collective talents and accomplishments of his new classmates. He thought to himself "Honestly, I don't feel like I belong here." By the end of the retreat, not only did he know he belonged, but he sensed that he and Leadership Oakland found each other at the right time.

Just as his LO Cornerstone year was beginning, C.J. was promoted to a senior leadership role at nonprofit Community Housing Network (CHN), where he was the newly-created director of Resource Development and Communications. He found the opportunity to learn so much about what really makes Oakland County work, while being surrounded by many great leaders at this important time in his career, was inspiring and transformational. "LO welcomed me and gave me tremendous confidence in my own abilities. It also opened up a network of new friends and colleagues who shared many of my hopes for the places we live, work and play."

C.J. also worked on the steering committee for his class project, which became the Day of Service model that has been replicated successfully by all subsequent Cornerstone classes. "I had never had the opportunity to work closely with so many smart, talented and dedicated people" C.J. said. "Everyone put aside their egos and personal agendas and focused on creating a great project. It was a powerful experience."

Upon graduating from Cornerstone, C.J. was approached about joining the second class of LO's Advanced Leadership Institute (ALI), and he couldn't wait to take that next step. ALI was an intensely deep dive into personal leadership, experienced with a small group of fellow classmates who became confidants and supporters. "ALI gave me the unique opportunity to talk about some of the leadership challenges I was facing in my work and 'try on' new leadership concepts. The feedback and suggestions I got in that safe and supportive environment were invaluable and I reflect on and use those frequently."

C.J. also discovered one of the most valuable assets LO has to offer - the power of the 1,300+ Cornerstone alumni network. "I've had the opportunity to seek both help and advice from many members of other classes, while providing the same in return" he said. "When helping or being helped by an LO alum, there is an unspoken trust that just doesn't exist in many places. I truly believe there are no opportunities that can't be capitalized on and no challenges that can't be solved through one or more of our alumni."

After serving on some LO session and event committees, C.J. was asked to join the LO Board in the summer of 2015. "From the day I walked into that retreat through my board service today, LO has given me far more back than I've given to LO. The opportunity to serve this great organization, as we map our future and ensure that LO can continue to mean to others what it has meant to me, is an honor and privilege."
Member News

Congratulations to  Richard D. DiBartolomeo, LOIII for becoming the Chairman of the Board of Trustees for the Judson Center.
Congratulations  Leslynn Angel, LOXVIII on her 25 years with United Cerebral Palsy of Metro Detroit where she is the CEO and President.
Congratulations to  Pamela Iacobelli, LOXVI for becoming the new Director of Business Development and Marketing for Bodman PLC.
Congratulations to  Jenenne Whitfield, LOXVI for becoming the new President and CEO of the non-profit Heidelberg project.
Congratulations to  Mike Witzke, LOIX for being named Chair of Estate Planning and Probate Practice Group at McDonald Hopkins, LLC.