Leadership Greater Topeka

Leadership Greater Topeka brings together a broad cross section of both acknowledged and aspiring leaders from every corner of the community for an annual community leadership training course.

For the Greater Topeka area to grow and prosper, we need leaders from all backgrounds and vocations, who will wrestle with the challenges facing our community. The goals are to challenge and motivate traditional and non-traditional leaders by teaching 21st century leadership capacities through information, dialogue and hands-on experience so participants are better prepared to strengthen and transform our community.

In place since 1984, Leadership Greater Topeka has more than 910 alumni with nearly 70% still living and active in the Topeka area. Leadership Greater Topeka alumni are challenged to apply their talents throughout the community in volunteer, appointed and elected positions.

Nominations and applications for the program are accepted each fall with the new class announced prior to year end. The course is offered beginning in late January and runs until mid-May with a two-day retreat and eight day-long sessions, primarily on Fridays.

The sessions cover key community concerns in the areas of quality of life, government, crime, business and economic development, community services, education, health care and the media. Woven throughout the program are concepts of:

  • Adaptive/Technical Leadership Skills
  • 21st Century Leadership Skills: learning styles, change, collaboration, consensus, facilitation, visioning and steps to a learning community.
  • Servant Leadership: the natural feeling that one wants to serve, to serve first. Then conscious choice brings one to aspire to lead... to make sure that other people's highest priority needs are served.

2017 Tuition is $875.00; Scholarships are available for those who may see the tuition as a deterrent to applying.  Chamber membership is not a requirement for participation.


Important Dates for 2017 Leadership Greater Topeka Program

Nomination Deadline: Friday, Sept. 30

Application Deadline: 4:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 7, 2016

Conversations with Alumni (scheduled individually): Nov. 1-2, 2016

Selection Announcement: Friday, Dec. 9, 2016

Participant Orientation: 4 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 5

Two-Day Retreat: Thursday, Jan. 12, and Friday, Jan. 13; Location TBD

  • Session #1: Friday, Jan. 27, 8:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. 
  • Session #2: Friday, Feb. 10, 8:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. 
  • Session #3: Friday, Feb. 24, 8:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.
  • Session #4: Friday, March 10, 8:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.
  • Session #5: Friday, March 24, 8:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.
  • Session #6: Friday, April 7, 8:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.
  • Session #7: Friday, April 21, 8:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.
  • Session #8: Friday, May 5, 8:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.

Graduation/Alumni Luncheon: Wednesday, May 10, 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m., Ramada Convention Center, 420 SE Sixth Avenue, Topeka


2016 Leadership Greater Topeka Class

Thirty-six individuals from Topeka and Shawnee County have chosen to participate in the 2016 Leadership Greater Topeka Class. Leadership Greater Topeka, a program of the Greater Topeka Chamber of Commerce since 1984, identifies outstanding potential leaders from various components of the community. There are more than 900 alumni of the program.

Members of the 2016 class are:

Marcus Clark, Senior Pastor, Love Fellowship Church

Pat Colley, Director of Operational Effectiveness, Data and Reporting, and Risk Management, se2

Danielle Cottrell, Student, Topeka High School

Angela Dailey, Vice President, COO, Brewster Place

Corey Dehn, Senior Project Manager, Schwerdt Design Group, Inc.

Arnold Downing Sr., Vice President of Leasing and Tenant Services, Topeka Housing Authority

Tina Dreitzler Anderson, Electronic Banking Manager, Capitol Federal Savings

Keith Drinkard, Business Development Relationship Manager, INTRUST Bank

Bryan Falk, Architect, Architect One, PA

Scarlett Fisher-Herreman, Technical Services and Collection Development Supervisor, Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library

Emersen Frazier, Student, Washburn Rural High School

Lindsay Freeman, Community Engagement Coordinator, Advisors Excel

Jason Geier, Senior Assistant District Attorney, District Attorney Office, Third Judicial District

Trey George III, Executive Director, Topeka Housing Authority

Jeremy Graber, Attorney, Foulston Siefkin, LLP

Ty Hysten, Sales Executive/Employee Benefit Consultant, Century Health Solutions

Katie Koupal, Area Manager of External Affairs, AT&T

Abby Lear, Director, HR and Facilities, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas

Jessica Lehnherr, Executive Director, CASA of Shawnee County

Anya Leonard, Executive Assistant, Capitol Federal Foundation

Jeff Lolley, Project Manager, Bartlett & West

Murray Moore, Instructor, Topeka High School

Terry Neher, Senior Vice President/Corporate and Commercial Banking, U.S. Bank

Shannon Nichol, Realtor, Coldwell Banker Griffith and Blair

Gabe O'Shea, Customer Service Representative, Community Bank

Morgan Padgett, Managing Director and Shareholder, CBIZ MHM, LLC

Matt Parks, Fleet Mechanic Journeyman, Westar Energy

Frank Qian, Director of Quantitative Research, FHLBank Topeka

Jim Ramos Jr., Marketing Consultant, WIBW-TV

Margo Rangel, Executive Assistant II, City of Topeka

Alex Reilly, Vice President and Agency Principal, MB Piland Advertising & Marketing, LLC

Debra Ricks, Treasurer, CPA, Pioneer Group Inc.

Kim Savage, Executive Director, Corporate Compliance and Internal Audit, Westar Energy

Nick Scott, Autonomous Maintenance Manager/Project Manager, Mars Chocolate North America

Jay Simecka, Major, Shawnee County Sheriff's Office

Mark Stock, Assistant Election Comissioner, Shawnee County Election Office

Tamara TaylorOfficer, Communications Manager, FHLBank Topeka


2017 Leadership Greater Topeka Nomination


I, or our organization, would like to nominate the following individual to participate in this program. (It is acceptable to nominate yourself.)

Nominee Information (person being nominated)

(if applicable)

I, or we, understand that an application and informational literature will be sent to the above individual for review and consideration.

Nominator (person who is nominating)


Powered by ChronoForms - ChronoEngine.com

RSVP FOR CHAMBER EVENTS! Quick & easy online registration available here for all your Chamber events.  Register Now Button

Chamber Events

Greater Topeka Chamber of Commerce Upcoming Events

Community Partners

Greater Topeka Chamber of Commerce Community Partners

Relocation Guide

Greater Topeka Chamber of Commerce Relocation Guide