Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Forty leaders from across Iowa have been selected as members of the 2019-20 class of Leadership Iowa, the premier issues-awareness program of the Iowa Association of Business and Industry (ABI) Foundation. The eight-month program is designed to foster a passion for civic and statewide engagement in current and emerging leaders.

Among them is Rebecca Whitaker, FIRST Tech Challenge Coordinator in the UI College of Engineering. (See the full list of participants here.)

The 2019-20 class will travel to communities throughout the state for a series of two-day sessions from October through June. Each session provides participants with an in-depth, first-hand look at an important issue facing our state by way of discussions with subject-matter experts, interactive experiences, industry tours and more.

Session locations and topics change annually. This year, the class will visit Perry, Iowa Falls, Fort Dodge, Des Moines, Muscatine, Glenwood, Council Bluffs and Waverly. Their year will culminate with the ABI Annual Conference in Cedar Rapids. This year’s session topics include agriculture/renewable resources, education, government, manufacturing, community vitality, economic development and healthcare.

“We are excited to welcome a new group of our state’s brightest leaders to take part in this enriching program,” said Mike Ralston, president of the Iowa Association of Business and Industry and a 1991 graduate of Leadership Iowa. “For the past 37 years, Leadership Iowa has been helping to shape participants who have gone on to make great strides as leaders in our communities, our businesses and our state.”

Since its inception in 1982, Leadership Iowa has graduated more than 1,200 individuals from both the private and public sector, representing each geographical region of Iowa. Each year, 40 talented individuals are selected from a large applicant pool based on achieving the best balance of qualified candidates for a particular year.