More About the Western States Leadership Institute

How will Participants, Teams, and their Organizations Benefit?

Participants will learn the skills needed to:

  • Manage and sustain person-centered, values-based transformational change;
  • Succeed in leadership challenges unique to the field of intellectual/developmental disabilities;
  • Challenge the status quo through experimentation and risk-taking;
  • Set ambitious goals for yourself and your organization;
  • Build and sustain positive organizational culture and inspire the positive contribution of team members at all levels; and,
  • Communicate the learning to your organization upon your return.

Who Should Apply?

The Leadership Institute is a four week-long, intensive online leadership development program for those identified by their organizations as emerging leaders. Participants may work in areas of management or program leadership in organizations that provide, advocate for, or fund community-based services and supports for adults with intellectual/developmental disabilities and their families.

Institute participants will come away with demonstrated leadership ability and a firm grasp of the values that are critical for quality, individualized supports. Both current executive-level leaders and those who anticipate filling these leadership roles in the future are invited to apply. Applications can be accessed here

What Does the Institute Include?

See sample schedule to get a feel for the richness of the Western States Leadership Institute.

The focus will be on determining and setting organizational direction, moving the organization to a high-performance model and building a lifetime network of peers and leaders to sustain career growth. To do this, the Institute will include presentations by leaders in the field, exercise and discussion groups, leadership assessments and activities, and opportunities for collaboration around organization and systems change.

Week Long Institute - Organizational Direction

Topic Areas:

  • The history of the field as a context for change and trends for the future;
  • Understanding one's own strengths and needs relevant to leadership;
  • Managing people and organizational relationships;
  • Achieving true self-directed supports;
  • Managing for quality and outcomes to meet the needs and desires of people with disabilities and their families;
  • Maximizing public funding;
  • Strategic planning, visioning a better future, strategically-driven decision making, and organizational change;
  • Selecting and supporting quality staff;
  • Assuring commitment to positive values/promoting a positive organizational culture;
  • Building leadership within one's organization or state/province;
  • Applying strategies for problem-solving;
  • Adapting to philosophical, organizational, and public policy shifts;
  • Having a positive impact on public policy and the future of services.

To learn more about the Leadership Institute, e-mail Kristen Loomis at