Year 1 of 17 County Leadership Program Concludes

Year 1 of 17 County Leadership Program Concludes Main Photo

16 Apr 2021


Date:  4/16/2021 

Contact:  Derek Dauel

Phone: 402-362-3333





The inaugural 17-County Leadership program finished Thursday with their final class and celebration lunch. The program was launched by York County Development Corporation (YCDC) this year after receiving feedback from area businesses on the need for additional leadership development.

“Leadership York is a great program to introduce participants to a network of community members and everything in the community of York while also exposing their participants to leadership theory. The Talent Committee of YCDC, made up of multiple Leadership York graduates, wanted to create a program that built upon that to further our community members leadership styles and abilities,” said Derek Dauel, YCDC Development Coordinator.

17-County Leadership was a series of three, four-hour classes including the topics of Model the Way, Inspire a Shared Vision, Challenge the Process, Enable Others to Act, Servant Leadership, and Encourage the Heart. In addition, individuals had the opportunity to have three one-on-one leadership development calls with a focus on learning and developing personal strengths and conducting a 360 degree survey to provide feedback on identifying a personal leadership development topic.

“We were thrilled with the individuals who participated in the program this year,” said Dauel. “There was a variety of individuals from a variety of businesses and we had entry level managers as well an individuals who are the leaders of their entire organization. I heard participants tell me how they appreciated the theory of leadership as well as practical tools that individuals applied in their business immediately after class.”

"Leadership is more than quippy adages, and it's more than job titles. Good quality leadership that galvanizes groups and helps to achieve meaningful work is about listening, emotional intelligence, and investing in the whole person of each individual. 17-County Leadership is deeply rooted in those principles and the program makes it actionable. Beyond a more sense of completion or community involvement, Andy and the program dig deep into the practicality of what makes leadership leadership. I was challenged and stretched to not only think critically but be proactive in implementing new found skills and approaches to team building and marketplace performance. Completing this program has made me better. I can't recommend 17-County Leadership enough." - Mitchell Roush

Leadership training was provided by Cultivate Rural Leaders President Andy Long. Long is the founder of Cultivate Rural Leaders and has a background in rural education, higher education leadership, and community leadership as McCook Economic Development Corporation Executive Director. Long said, “It is easy to see the rural communities that are moving forward are investing in their human capital. It is encouraging to see York County Development Corporations commitment to developing the next generation of leaders that are going to help local businesses expand and the community to become stronger.”

17 County Leadership was made possible by sponsored that included Nebraska Public Power District, Central Valley Ag, Cornerstone Bank, Henderson State Bank, Black Hills Energy, York General, York State Bank, and JLC Incorporated/Jensen Lumber Company.

A main part of YCDC’s strategic plan is to develop, retain, and recruit talent to help meet York County businesses workforce needs. 17-County Leadership is one of the initiatives to meet this goal along with a variety of others. To learn more about the work YCDC is doing around workforce development contact Dauel at 402.362.3333 or


About York County Development Corporation

York County Development Corporation (YCDC) is a public-private not-for-profit organization with a mission to promote and encourage quality economic growth in York County, Nebraska. YCDC works confidentially and offers unbiased, detailed, and customized information to clients for no fee. YCDC is the lead economic development organization in York County Nebraska, and utilizes a team approach to ensure access to all agencies and programs that can be of assistance to your project. For more information on YCDC, please visit

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