4 Rural Success

Power of Possibilities  Series

Garrett College, in partnership with Garrett County Economic Development, recently announced the inaugural year of Leadership Garrett County (LGC).  LGC is designed to provide upcoming leaders in the County with a practical, informative and engaging experience over a seven month program.  Open to all, the program is focused on drawing in and identifying those in the millennial generation (born late 70’s to early 00’s) that can become the future leaders of the County. 

Open to those in education, business, government, the arts, non-profits and any organization in the County, large and small, members of the first year’s “class” will experience leadership training, trips to County organizations and meetings with those that run local entities in the criminal justice, government, healthcare, business, religious, agency, etc. arenas. Applicants must be sponsored by their organization, submit an application and pay a $25 application fee.  The fee for the first year’s program, including programming material, transportation to site-visits and lunches, is $350.

Program – For those admitted to the program – One day a month from October – April

Sampling event – For current organizational leaders/managers seeking to learn more about leadership and the program – Afternoon of September 13th and morning of September 14th. Free event for County leaders to experience a condensed version of the curriculum and learn more about the program, with the intent of possibly nominating an employee or volunteer from their organization.

Contact Mike Tumbarello at 301.387.3167 or mike.tumbarello@garrettcollege.edu for more information.


Q1. What is Leadership Garrett County?

A1. Leadership Garrett County is a new program that has been years in the making. Like many other counties in Maryland and other states, Garrett County has been discussing building a program for County residents that will help develop future leaders.  This program, over a seven month period starting in late October, will expose those in the program to training and experiences that help them understand and be able to apply leadership concepts almost immediately.  It will also expose them to other up and coming County leaders, current leaders and various key sectors in the Garrett County economy: agriculture, healthcare, government, education, criminal justice, business, etc. The program is a joint venture between Garrett College (that is managing the program) and Garrett County Economic Development.

Q2. Who should consider becoming a member of Leadership Garrett County’s first class starting in October, 2016?

A2. The program is open to anyone, but we are especially looking to those early-career members of our community that have shown promise as potential future leaders in the public or private sectors.  We are truly hoping to grow our next generation of County leaders that are members of the millennial generation (born late 70’s through early 00’s).  We encourage anyone, from any background, to apply to enter the program.

Q3. Is this like going back to school?

A3. No, it will not be like going back to school.  The program will entail a commitment of one day a month (from both you and your employer, and from October through April) to meet with other members of the program, learn about leadership from a trainer and then travel (together, on a bus) to a location or locations where community leaders will explain their organization, it’s role and what they do.  There will also be projects for program members. We are looking for the next generation of leaders, not scholars, and part of the benefit for members is the networking.

Q4. So, I don’t need a college degree to join?

A4. That is correct.  You just need to be identified by a leader at your business, non-profit or governmental agency that sponsors your application.  If you are a sole-proprietor in business-for-self, you can nominate yourself.  There is a $25 application fee, and $350 cost for the seven month program, that the sponsoring organization will usually pay.  The fee includes program materials, training, lunches, bus transportation to the monthly sites (from a starting point at Garrett College), etc. A team of local leaders will review all applications.

Q5. I am a manager at a Garrett County organization that may want to send one or more of our employees/volunteers/directors to the program.  What should I do?

A5. We need the buy-in and participation of a variety of Garrett County organizations to make this work and we welcome your involvement and sponsorship of an applicant. We are holding a FREE “sampling” and introduction program for potential sponsoring organizations and their leaders/managers (NOT potential program members) on September 13th and 14th at Garrett College.  The program will start 1:00pm on Tuesday, September 13th and go until 5:00pm that day.  It will start-up again @ 9:00am on Wednesday, September 14th and go until Noon, with a luncheon to follow.  Attendees, will learn more about Leadership Garrett County including the schedule, application process, etc., PLUS, attendees will receive a “sampling” presentation, including exercises, of the program that first year program members will receive.  If attendees can’t stay for the whole session, it is not required, but it will be great content for any manager or leader and again, it is free!

Q6. Where did you get the program content from and who will teach the program?

A6. We have licensed the leadership materials from University of Georgia’s Fanning Institute, a preeminent leader in community leadership programming.  In fact, the 9/13 and 14 sessions will be taught by Fanning Institute trainers.  Other content for the first year’s program will be taught by local leaders and trainers.  So, program members get the best of both worlds!

Q7. What again is the commitment of admitted members?

A7. The program is for one year, actually running from October, 2016 through April, 2017.  We intentionally left the summer months clear to enable those in the tourist industry to engage. Members will be required to attend one full day a month of leadership training, discussion, exercises and travel to a local institution.  We will likely have a graduation event in May and all those that successfully stick with the program will also be a part of our alumni association and invited to alumni events over time.

Q8. Why should my organization sponsor me or someone else in the organization?

A8. Any community needs sustained leaders and leadership.  By forming this program, we hope to help retain young people in the County (and local businesses), enrich their careers and help the County grow and thrive as a place to work and live in the future.  Plus, sponsoring organizations will hopefully experience higher employee retention rates, more satisfied employees and more connected and networked employees, which will help the organization in a number of ways. Some Maryland-based counties charge over $6,000 for a program like this.  We only charge $350 which most sponsoring organizations should be able to cover. 

Q9. I think we are interested in sponsoring someone or applying for the first year program for ourselves.  What should I do?

A9. Well, you should decide to take action and send someone from your organization to the 9/13-14 sampling event at the College.  Also please come back to this site (www.4ruralsuccess.com) for any updates and for an agenda and application (one page or so).  Please also feel free to contact Mike Tumbarello, Program Director and head of the Garrett College Center for Entrepreneurship & innovation to discuss or get additional questions answered/obtain an application.  Mike can be reached at 301.387.3167 or mike.tumbarello@garrettcollege.com .


September 13 and 14, 2016 preview and then October – April, 2016 for the program (see below)