In 2016, the Rural Center launched Homegrown Leaders, a regional extension of the Rural Economic Development Institute, which takes a broader and deeper regional approach to rural economic development and leadership advancement.
The Rural Center, in partnership with the Southwest Commission and Southwestern Community College, offered Homegrown Leaders, leadership training to up to 35 elected officials, government staff, nonprofit and faith-based leaders, business leaders, economic development professionals and other community-minded people working or living in Cherokee, Clay, Graham, Haywood, Jackson, Macon, and Swain counties.
Homegrown Leaders Helps Emerging Regional Leaders:
- Increase understanding of data and trends in a region,
- Increase understanding of comprehensive community economic development,
- Teach skills in effective collaboration at the local and regional levels,
- Increase knowledge of resources available to local communities and how to access them,
- Build regional networks of community leaders that promotes peer learning, resource sharing, and collaboration
“Homegrown Leaders is a valuable tool that educates leaders on the art of collaborating on a regional level. The resources provided were extremely helpful and the networking opportunities impressive. I met new colleagues that I have continued to collaborate with on a variety of projects. I learned diverse ways I can contribute to regional economic development in the counties that I serve through my work. It’s an excellent course, worth the time and effort to attend and participate to gain extensive leadership skills.”2016 Homegrown Leader Graduate
“Homegrown Leaders is one of the most valuable leadership workshops out there. Sometimes you sit in a workshop for eight hours waiting for one piece of useful information. Homegrown is different. You’re engaged the entire day, taking notes, and learning things that you can put into immediate action. The education combined with the networking opportunities makes this program invaluable.”2016 Homegrown Leader Graduate
NC Rural Center Receives Grant to Deliver Leadership Training in North Carolina’s Appalachian Region
RALEIGH - The Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) has awarded the NC Rural Center a $100,000 grant to increase regional leadership development in North Carolina's 29 Appalachian counties. The grant will allow the Rural Center to expand its Homegrown Leaders...
Interested in learning more?
Contact Misty Herget,
Senior Director of Programs
If you are interested in enhancing your leadership skills and contributing the growth or your rural community, please return when we have applications up for our next Homegrown Leaders.