Lake Superior Leadership Academy

A Professional Development Class Preparing Marquette County’s Present and Future Leaders for New Challenges and Opportunities
About LSLA

The Lake Superior Community Partnership established the Lake Superior Leadership Academy with the firm conviction that today’s leadership has an obligation to nurture tomorrow’s leaders. Our committee is committed to recruiting a group of the area’s finest emerging leaders who represent a broad spectrum of the county-wide community. We extend an invitation for you to participate as a sponsoring organization or class member.

The Lake Superior Leadership Academy strives to establish and maintain a climate where individuals may develop to their potential and maximize their contributions to our area. The impact of Academy graduates, past and future, on our community is incalculable.

“I had a fantastic time learning about local community business, government, schools, media, the justice system, etc., from some of the most respected community leaders throughout Marquette County.  I make use of something I have learned, just about every day in the office.”

-Roni Bur, Upper Peninsula Health Plan, Class of ’14

“The Lake Superior Leadership Academy was an awesome experience.  I would highly recommend anyone to participate.  I’ve lived in Marquette my whole life and got to see parts of my community that I’ve never had to chance to or even knew about before.  I also built relationships/friendships with other leaders in the community that will last a lifetime.”

-Cortney Ranta, VAST, Class of ’14

“Participation in the Lake Superior Leadership Academy not only helped me grow personally, by opening my eyes to businesses and organizations integral to our area, but professionally as well.”

-Marina Dupler, Northern Michigan University, Class of ’13

“I can’t say enough good things about the Lake Superior Leadership Academy. It gave me the ability to see and explore the many working parts that make up Marquette County, while at the same time giving me incredible networking and skill-building opportunities.”

-Scott Reddinger, VAST, Class of ’13


The Lake Superior Leadership Academy brings together potential leaders from the area to address pertinent community needs, strengthen individual leadership abilities and encourage participants to personally commit to assuming new leadership roles in the community.

Key Objectives

  • to identify potential leaders
  • to educate participants about community needs and leadership opportunities
  • to improve management and leadership skills
  • to develop relationships of value when working together on community projects
  • to create rapport among participants and present community leaders

The Program

An initial orientation “retreat” is followed by one session each month, ending with a graduation ceremony makes up the class year. The sessions are designed to acquaint class members with information on the organizational structure, unique features, strengths and challenges of the community as a whole. The program encourages participation in community affairs. Members of the class will become aware of community networking and its benefits and participate in it. Alumni from previous classes are called upon to take part in programs for the classes that follow.

Organizational Structure

The Lake Superior Leadership Academy operates as an independent program within the Lake Superior Community Partnership. The Academy is led by a committee of volunteers who are all past graduates of the program. Partnership staff members oversee the day-to-day activities relating to the program.

The Program Year

The Academy consists of a day-long retreat in the Fall, nine topic-oriented days throughout the year and a graduation program in May. The retreat sets the stage for the programs which will include structured exercises exploring dynamics of our society, analysis of individual leadership and decision making styles and effective utilization of group process. The following sessions focus individually on a major area of community concern and explore the issue of leadership within the context of the day’s program.


The Academy actively solicits applicants from all sectors of the community. Criteria for selection include demonstrated leadership skills, active involvement in the community, and a commitment to invest the time required by the program. A conscientious effort will be made to select participants who represent a cross-section of the community. This will guarantee that a diversity of perspectives will generate meaningful personal interaction and learn in the Leadership Program.

Attendance Requirements

Attendance is mandatory for Academy participants. Prospective participants who are unable to attend the retreat, the established sessions and graduation need not apply.


The Academy provides participants with opportunities to meet and talk with leaders from all segments of our community. They will exchange views and share opinions and challenges facing our area. In addition, the interaction of the participants allows for the development of mutual trust and respect which will encourage continuing relationships outside the formal program.

Over a period of time, as alumni increase their community participation and assume positions of greater responsibility, our community will be strengthened.

A New Resource

Graduates of the Academy will become a part of a new community resource – a group of men and women with the desire and ability to positively impact important community activities. They will have gained a new awareness of our community – what makes it work, its strengths its challenges and what needs to be done in the future.

How To Apply

Applications may be initiated individually or by nomination. Participants will be chosen from the written applications.

Nominees will require the full support of the organization or business which they represent. Attendance and participation in each session are essential.


Tuition payments may be made in 2-4 installments over the duration of the program. Tuition for the Academy is $1,450 for LSCP partners and $1,750 for non-LSCP partners.



To make the distribution of scholarship monies for tuition to the Lake Superior Leadership Academy as equitable as possible, the Lake Superior Leadership Academy Steering Committee has developed the following policy:

• No more than one recipient from a single for-profit business or organization will receive a Leadership Academy scholarship within a three-year period.

• No more than one recipient from a single non-profit organization will receive a Leadership Academy scholarship within a two-year period.

• Application for a Leadership Academy scholarship must be made at the time of application to the Leadership Academy.

• Scholarships for recipients employed or sponsored by a for-profit business or organization shall not exceed $500.

• Scholarships for recipients employed or sponsored by a non-profit organization shall not exceed $750.

• A Leadership Academy student who receives a scholarship is required to complete all Leadership Academy requirements for attendance and graduation during the year he/she was admitted to Leadership Academy. Scholarship funds cannot be carried over to subsequent Academy classes or subsequent applicants from the same organization.

• Distribution of Leadership Academy scholarships is dependent upon the funds that are available for scholarships. The availability of scholarships is not guaranteed from year to year.

• The recommendation of the Lake Superior Leadership Academy Steering Committee regarding scholarships is final.