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Mark O'Connell's closing comments for the 2013 Leadership Wisconsin Conference. Mark is Executive Director of the Wisconsin Counties Association and a member of the Leadership Wisconsin Board of Directors. He and WCA are committed partners in Leadership Wisconsin's work of developing leaders to strengthen communities.

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Wisconsin Women in Government (WWIG) graduates Town Supervisor Lisa Jeschke and Representative Mandy Wright, along with WWIG board members Representative Kathy Bernier and Representative JoCasta Zamarripa spoke with conference attendees regarding serving in elected office.

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Keynote Stephen Black talked about the moral obligations of leadership. He discussed that civility is more than respect, it is actively engaging with people who have different experiences and opinions from our own, and taking time to understand and connect. He challenged us to find success stories and use them to create powerful visions that rewrite the stories of our communities.

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Are you ready to "Navigate the Wilds of Leadership?"  Our Safari begins at 10am at the Kalahari!  This year's conference gives leaders an opportunity to explore how to create civil dialogue where polarizing opinions exist and to create inclusive solutions to complex issues facing our communities and organizations.

Keynote Stephen Black will set the stage for our journey.  Founder and President of Impact Alabama, Mr. Black received the prestigious Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Community Health Leaders Award in 2008 for his work with FocusFirst, a collaborative effort that provides a cost-effective direct response to the vision problems of children who live in urban and rural areas.  Since beginning in 2004, more than 189,000 children in all 67 counties across the sate have been screened through the program.

FocusFirst is just one example of the organizations and communities that Mr. Black describes as meeting the moral obligation to do more than talk about inclusion and civility - they are influencing others to create positive change!

Great opening keynote by Stephen Black!

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Jane Deau of Merrill Area Enrichment Center shares tips on engaging volunteers, including recognize their skills, match the volunteer to the task, have a volunteer job description with clear duties, communicate the time commitment, and articulate the benefits to the volunteer.

Is your organization dominated by a Stage 4 Tribal Culture? Deirdre Gruendler with CultureSync shared with us how to identify what stage our organizations are operating at by the language, complaints, relationships, and alignment with mission, vision and values. Stage 4 tribes in an organization have a sense of team and accomplish more than their lower stage counterparts.

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Did you attend the 2012 or 2011 Leadership Wisconsin Conference?  If yes, add a comment to this post and share with us your favorite part of the conference.

Past attendees have said:

"My mind is still brimming with good ideas from the conference and I can't wait to get home and explore more of the good things that I want to follow up on and learn."

"There are very few affordable and accessible conferences that bring leaders from many backgrounds under the same roof to have a candid conversation about what it takes to be an effective leader."

What will you say about the 2013 Leadership Wisconsin Annual Conference?
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Q. What's the story behind the Safari theme for this year's conference?

A. You might think it is simply because we are holding the 2013 conference at the Kalahari - certainly the theme fits!  But there is more to the story...Leadership Wisconsin's Signature Program includes a two-week seminar held in another country.  In March 2014 Group XV will be learning about development partnerships in The United Republic of Tanzania.  Tanzania is a microcosm of the issues that challenge many countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, a region of the world targeted by most public and private development efforts.   In addition, Wisconsin has a number of ties to people, organizations and development projects in Tanzania.

Check out this YouTube video about Group XIV's International Seminar to Spain & Morocco.

Welcome to the 2013 Leadership Wisconsin Annual Conference Google+ Community!

This is a space to get the inside scoop on conference details, sneak peaks on our fabulous line up of speakers, and additional resources related to conference topics and breakouts.  We hope this community will also give you a space to interact, share your reactions and ideas, and further connect with other conference participants!

Thank you for joining us on this Leadership Safari!  See you next week!

Sarah Schlosser
Executive Director, Leadership Wisconsin
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