Show/Hide more photosLeadership Louisville

Leading Louisville through Knowledge, Passion and Partnership.

About the Program

Do you have a passion for building a vibrant Louisville? A passion for learning and engaging in issues? A passion for meeting and collaborating with other high performance individuals?

Leadership Louisville participants are a select group with a passion for acquiring the knowledge, connections and values necessary to drive positive community change.

Now in its 36th year, Leadership Louisville is a 10-month experience that is transformational for both participants and the organizations they lead. Through hands-on experiences, participants fully explore local government, education, economic development and the arts. You’ll see it all through the eyes of experienced area leaders who deal every day with our community’s biggest challenges. With the benefit of new perspectives and connections, participants are prepared to take their places as effective community leaders.

See video, “Leadership Louisville leaves lasting impression” in which PNC executives, Mike Harreld, Craig Grant (retired) and Chuck Denny, reflect on the benefits of Leadership Louisville.

  • “One of the many takeaways from Leadership Louisville was a partnership with the University of Louisville School of Nursing that will provide a pipeline of healthcare nurses for some of our community’s most vulnerable citizens. The real payoff will be in how I draw upon the knowledge, skills, relationships and newfound understanding of our city.”
    Mark Bolton (LL ’14)Director, Louisville Metro Department of Corrections

  • “As a native Louisvillian and very involved community member, I could not believe how many new connections I made.  I now have the ability to collaborate with many different fields and professions, which I know will help me professionally and personally.  I’m a better citizen now that I have a broader understanding of the city’s challenges and opportunities, and I’m equipped to take responsibility for making the city thrive.”
    Susan Duncan (LL ’15), Dean, Brandeis School of Law, University of Louisville

  • “From the exposure to places, people and new relationships, I’ve become part of this community in a way that I never would have without Leadership Louisville.  The connectivity and passion that came up from our class was amazing.  If you have the opportunity to do this, you owe it to yourself, and more importantly, you owe it to your community.”
    Tom Johnson (LL ’13), Vice President, Public Relations & Chief Communications Officer, Norton Healthcare

How Individuals Benefit

  • Immersion in how Louisville actually runs will give you a broader and deeper perspective on the city and your role in the community.
  • You will build a long-lasting network of civic-minded local leaders who both support and challenge your views on the community’s key issues.
  • You’ll discover issues you are passionate about by experiencing them firsthand.

Read blog posts from current participants and graduates about their Leadership Louisville experience.

How Organizations benefit

  • Participants meet fellow community leaders, establish connections and expand their circle of influence.
  • Your company leaders establish relationships that will provide new opportunities to serve the community and deal firsthand with vital local issues.
  • The program provides participants with foundations to build a strong local network, deepening individual connections to the community and making more committed leaders.

Time Commitment

Two-day opening retreat followed by one program day each month (August – May). Enhancements are announced throughout the program year and are optional.

Program Calendar – Class of 2016

Program days are held on Tuesdays, from 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

August 20 – 21, 2015 Mandatory Opening Retreat
September 15, 2015
October 13, 2015
November 3, 2015
December 1, 2015
January 12, 2016
February 9, 2016
March 1, 2016
April 12, 2016
May 10, 2016

Who should Apply

The Leadership Louisville program is designed for experienced leaders who want to significantly increase their impact on their organization and their community.  This includes senior executives, presidents and vice presidents, executive directors, business owners, and high-level directors and managers, representing all industries and business types within our region. Know someone who should be in this class? Refer a leader.

How to Apply

Applications for the Leadership Louisville Class of 2016 are now closed. The online application considers prior Leadership Louisville Center program participation, education, career, community service, responses to essay questions and recommendations. Applications for the Class of 2017 will open in spring 2016.


Tuition is $5,500 and includes meals, materials, and overnight lodging for opening retreat.
Limited scholarships are available based on need. The scholarship application is part of the registration process.


Please see Frequently Asked Questions about Leadership Louisville program or contact Angella Wilson at (502) 561-0458 or email.