What is Leadership Plano?
Leadership Plano began in 1982 and is a program of the Plano Chamber of Commerce spanning nine months from September through May. Our community leadership training program is transformational for both participants and the organizations they serve. Through exclusive tours and hands-on experiences, participants learn more about local government, education, economic development, and more.
Participants cultivate new relationships throughout the community, explore complex regional issues and deepen their leadership skills. At the end of the program, alumni are poised to have increased impact through their civic engagement.
What is the Leadership Plano experience like?
The Leadership Plano program year begins with a mandatory overnight opening retreat in September. Day one of the retreat is traditionally held at Bridgeport Camp and Conference Center in Bridgeport, Texas. On day two, the class travels to Ponder, Texas, for activities at Stony Ranch Challenge Course, led by Leadership on the Move. All levels of ability are accommodated throughout the retreat as well as the remainder of the program.
During the program year, the class meets one day per month at varying locations in the Plano community. During these program days, participants explore various aspects of our community and are exposed to the challenges and successes facing our growing city. The program concludes with graduation in May.
What can I expect to take away from Leadership Plano?
Participants have the unique opportunity to explore the inner workings of the community in which they live and work. Class members develop a valuable network of connections with fellow classmates and LP alumni, as well as build relationships through interactions with top community leaders. Leadership Plano participants will walk away with a broader and deeper perspective of the city and their role in it. They gain personal and professional skills that increase their effectiveness both within the community and business environment.
Businesses whose employees participate in Leadership Plano benefit from participants’ newfound knowledge of the city. Emerging leaders will add to their leadership toolkit, developing personal skills that will contribute to their role in the workplace. More experienced leaders will also benefit from finding new opportunities to serve the community and learning firsthand about vital local issues. All participants will expand their network and build strong individual connections to the community, making them more committed leaders.
The City of Plano benefits from the development of a source of high-quality leaders with broadened perspectives prepared to address issues critical to Plano’s future. The success of the program can be measured by the number of Leadership Plano graduates who currently serve the community in volunteer and elected positions.
Who should apply for Leadership Plano?
The Leadership Plano program is designed for demonstrated leaders who have a history of involvement in the community. We look for individuals with a commitment to ongoing personal development and a strong desire to continue their service.
The ideal candidate:
- Has held volunteer leadership roles in community, civic, service, social, religious or other organizations
- Is an experienced professional that holds a leadership role in their (paid, self-employed, or volunteer) occupation
- Lives and/or works in Plano or within Plano ISD boundaries
- Is a member (or employer is a member) of the Plano Chamber of Commerce
- Has an interest in using their learnings from Leadership Plano in future business, civic or community leadership roles
- Is passionate about working with others to keep Plano a world-class community
What is the time commitment involved?
Leadership Plano participants must attend the mandatory overnight opening retreat in September and are expected to attend each of the eight program days. Program days are held one Thursday per month from approximately 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Participants must not be absent for more than the equivalent of two full-day class sessions, defined as 19 hours. No exceptions will be considered.
Attendance at both the New Class Reception in October and graduation in May is essential to the experience of Leadership Plano. Attendance for at least one of these events is required for graduation from the program.
In addition to the scheduled program days, the class will develop and implement one project that will benefit the city of Plano and/or the Collin County community. Class members will be expected to devote time outside of the regularly scheduled monthly class meetings to plan and complete the project. The class project must be completed before graduation in May.
What is the cost?
Leadership Plano program tuition is $1,500 ($1,350 for Plano Chamber of Commerce members), which includes overnight retreat lodging, meals, and materials for program days. Tuition is due by August 15th.
The fee may be paid by the applicant, their employer, or by a combination of both. In order to claim the Chamber of Commerce discount, the tuition must be paid by the member organization.
Is financial assistance available?
Partial tuition scholarships are available based on need. The scholarship application is part of the online application. Be prepared to state the amount of scholarship requested and the reason you need a scholarship. Please note that Leadership Plano does not award full scholarships.
Payment plans are also available upon request.
How many applications does Leadership Plano receive each year?
As a long-standing policy, Leadership Plano does not disclose the exact number of applications for our program. Acceptance into Leadership Plano is a competitive process as we receive significantly more applications than spaces allotted. Each year, the number of applications increases, yet the number we can accommodate in the class remains constant – about 35 participants. Some Leadership Plano participants will have applied multiple times before being accepted into the class.
How many people are invited to participate each year?
Typical class size for Leadership Plano is approximately 35 participants.
How do I submit an application?
Applications for Leadership Plano Class 38 will open in the spring. Applications are due by 5 p.m. on June 15, 2020.
A completed Leadership Plano application consists of the following components:
- Completed online application form.
- Paid application fee.
- One recommendation letter submitted via an online recommendation form, which will be available on the Leadership Plano website.
Applications are not considered complete until these documents are submitted and application fee is paid.
What happens after my application is submitted?
Once you have submitted your application form and all other components, your application will be considered complete. The Leadership Plano Selection Committee will determine who will be invited to join the class. The selection committee seeks to establish a class that represents a strong diversity of professional, demographic, and personal attributes and a balance of companies and organizations represented. The selection committee also seeks candidates that have demonstrated a high level of commitment to community service and a strong motivation to participate in the Leadership Plano program. By the end of July, you will be notified by letter if you are invited to join the class.
Is there an age limit to participate in Leadership Plano?
Leadership Plano serves adults of any age who wish to better understand their community and get more involved in community service. The age range of a class typically spans from participants in their 20s to their 70s. Diversity of age and experience is considered a strength in selecting a Leadership Plano class.