Condrad Daniels, the newly-appointed Chair of the Leadership Louisville Center board of directors and President of HJI Supply Chain Solutions, sat down to discuss his history with LLC, why he wanted to have such a big role on the board, what initiative at LLC he is most passionate about, and what qualities he feels make a great leader.
Tell us a bit about yourself and how you came to be the LLC board chair?
I’m Condrad Daniels and I moved here in 2000, hailing from Georgia Tech in Atlanta, Georgia. I come from a very diverse cultural background within my own family and where I grew up. Coming to Kentucky was different, you know? It was being in certain rooms where I was the only person that looked like I did. Working for my in-laws and their family business where community was so important to them, it felt like “Am I in this room? Do I fit? Should I be here?” That confidence piece was missing. Enter Class of 2013, best class ever, of Leadership Louisville. That gave me confidence. It gave me the confidence to say that yes, I am among peers, I fit in this room, I am supposed to be here. Because of that experience, it was the first time I felt a belonging to the city and this group of people who will hopefully shape the future of the city. As I learned and experienced Leadership Louisville, I continued to gain more and more confidence. And I look around the community and know there are a lot of Condrads who can impact the city just as much that did not have the opportunity I had with the Leadership Louisville Center, and I wanted to be a part of it. So I continued with LLC and thank you, Cynthia, for being gracious and allowing me to be a part of the board. I have been able to impact the board in some capacity, and that has been my journey to board chair of Leadership Louisville Center.
Why is the LLC work so important? What compelled you to want to be a part of it in such a big way?
What I have come to learn in being behind the scenes and supporting Cynthia is that no one does it better in our region. We are the flagship. There are peer cities, however there are also much bigger cities as well, that look to the Leadership Louisville Center for support, guidance, and recreating the ecosystem that Cynthia has brought to our region. It is really neat to see that at the Leadership Louisville Center it has the word “Louisville” on it, but it is really a beacon of leadership for a lot of cities that are trying to recreate what we have here.
Which LLC initiative are you most passionate about?
We set out as a board to hit certain racial and cultural milestones, and we exceed those goals every year. We are making our programming look like the community, and we are exceeding that and challenging ourselves every year to be way more inclusive. If the organizations and companies that we work with and for can take that same approach and intentional leadership with making everyone feel like they belong, then this city could be something much greater.
What makes a great leader?
There are so many ways to answer this, and there’s no one right answer. However, within our company and what we are trying to build here with the leaders we are developing, there’s an acronym we use that is: HAVE It. HAVE means we want our leaders to lead with Humility, Authenticity, Vulnerability, and Empathy. We feel like those four things together is what we are trying to promote, how we hire, and how we want to make sure everyone leads within our leadership team.