The Greater Missouri Leadership Challenge hosted the Class of 2023 cohort in Kansas City June 14-16. This year’s class is another dynamic group and took full advantage of their second session together. Following is an outline of the session topics and speakers. We are grateful to all of the speakers for providing rich insight into their work. Session III kicks off in Kirksville this September. 

We are grateful to the Greater MO alums who shared their time by serving on the Session II planning committee:

  • Kate Bender, 2020
  • Thalia Cherry, 2012
  • Rosalind Cochran, 2013
  • Mara Cohara, 2010
  • Kim Gasper, 2022
  • Phyllis Hardwick, 2022
  • Jennifer Ingraham, 2008
  • Cindy Miller, 2020
  • Lacey Haden Peaches, 2022
  • Paula Pratt, 2010
  • Kate Sweeten 2022
  • Elizabeth Wheeler, 2020
  • Joni Wickham, 2018

Kansas City Regional Insights and Landscape 
Moderated by Rosalind Cochran, Senior Manager, Offsite Assessment & Analysis, NeighborWorks America, GMLF Board President, Class of 2013 
Deletta Dean, Regional Vice President – Midwestern Region for NeighborWorks America 
Alex Francisco, PhD – Chief Science Officer, KCMO Health Department 
Julie Gronquist-Blodgett, Executive Director, Teach for America 

Wendy Doyle, CEO of United WE  

Arts As a Tool for Economic Development & Neighborhood Revitalization 
Moderated by Dana Knapp, CEO & President, ArtsKC  
Suzi Aron, Developer with Aron Real Estate and past president of the Crossroads Community Association 
Pat Jordan, President, Gem Cultural and Educational Center Founder, iSTEAMKC 
Amy Kligman, Executive and Artistic Director, Charlotte Street Foundation 
Deanna Munoz, CEO & Founder of the Latino Arts Foundation & Midwest Chicana Brand 

Attended the Kansas City Current match

Introduction and Tour of Operation Breakthrough with Dr. Mary Esselman, President and CEO

Introduction to Reconciliation Services & Thelma’s Kitchen, Fr. Justin Mathews, Executive Director 

Introduction & Tour of Pawsperity – Natasha Herdman, CEO

Introduction & Tour of Veterans Community Project 

Panel discussion with Kansas City Area Women Elected Civic Leaders
Moderator: Phyllis Hardwick, Community Capital Fund, Class of 2022

Yolanda Clark, Class of 2023, Kansas City, Kansas School Board Member
Theresa Garza, Raytown City Council
Missouri State Representative Maggie Nurrenbern, District 15

Introduction & Tour of Wonderscope – Roxane Hill, Executive Director

Introduction, Leadership Journey, Tour and Lunch Challenge at Harvesters – Joanna Sebelien, Chief Resource Officer, Paula Pratt, Chief Engagement Officer, Monic Houpe, Chief Operating Officer