Leadership Northwest

Leadership Northwest is a program designed to develop resourceful, motivated business leaders who are committed to making Northwest Connecticut a better place to live and work.

Participants meet between October and June on the third Wednesday of each month. Each session offers a full day of professional development, with workshop participation, panel discussions, and tours of state and local organizations. In addition, each participant works with a team to plan and complete a self-directed, community-oriented service project.



Class of 2019 Graduates

The purpose of Leadership Northwest is to:

  • Strengthen the commitment of community and business leaders to improve our region;
  • Educate participants about the economic, social, and political forces affecting our state and our region;
  • Enhance the organizational and problem-solving skills of our local leaders, and;
  • Provide a network of up-and-coming community leaders who will fill community leadership roles and ably identify and help resolve the challenges of the future.

Employers Gain:

  • Employees with increased leadership, organizational and problem solving skills;
  • A strengthened involvement in community affairs;
  • Access to a network of community leaders and resources;
  • Public recognition of their community involvement;
  • Enhanced employee morale.

The Community Gains:

  • A committed, knowledgeable group of people prepared to accept key positions on community boards;
  • A broad-based pool of individuals sensitive to the diverse populations in the community;
  • A group with a greater appreciation of the issues facing our community today and in the future.

Participants Receive:

  • Experience with group dynamics and team leadership, along with professional and personal growth;
  • Understanding of varying leadership styles;
  • Opportunities to communicate with influential regional leaders.

Session Topics Include:

  • Leadership Development & Team Building
  • Social Service & Philanthropy
  • Corporate Leadership Panel
  • Media & Communications
  • Connecting with Local Businesses
  • Government & Economic Development
  • Arts, Culture & Education


Leadership Northwest participants are expected to attend all scheduled sessions in order to graduate. Times may vary but most sessions generally run from 9:00 a.m – 4:00 p.m.
Participants in the program require full support from their employers and acknowledgment of the time required away from their position. In addition, participants collaborate on self-directed community-oriented team projects.

What Our Graduates Are Saying:

  • “Thank you so much for this amazing experience. Leadership truly changed my life! It opened my eyes to a whole world I knew nothing about. There is so much more to life than banking!”
    -Jane Hall, Torrington Savings Bank
  • “Leadership Northwest has helped me grow personally and professionally. It has opened new doors for me in the community, helped me to step out of my comfort zone and try new things, and made me a more confident business professional.”
    —Sabrina Smeltz, Northwest CT YMCA
  • “The monthly sessions were interesting and taught me so much about the region and what it has to offer as well as the challenges. I am so glad to have been a part of the program and enjoyed the experience.”
    —Margret Warner, Litchfield Bancorp
  • “I found Leadership Northwest very meaningful for both my personal and professional development. Working with so many different people, all with different personality types, made me more aware of how to approach people to get the best results. My job requires interacting with many people on different levels, so it made me much more aware of my approach.”
    —Rose Rovero, Northwest Community Bank
  • “I am sure that I would not have had the opportunity to meet businesses and community leaders, to learn about their roles and to have the chance to work with some great people had it not been for this program.”
    —Art Lampron, Alcoa Howmet