Leadership Sanford

Leadership Sanford
Program Details


Mission: To provide a continuous, diverse supply of creative leaders to the community by developing their knowledge of the region and providing them the opportunity for meaningful action.


The program begins in September and runs until June. The sessions give participants an in-depth look at a range of topics of community interest and importance by experts and community leaders. Topics are designed to provide both personal development and community enrichment. The program concludes in June with a graduation ceremony.


  • To select highly qualified potential and emerging leaders who are most likely to give to the community through service and have the potential to assume expanded responsibility.
  • To provide participants with the knowledge necessary to create a deeper understanding of the community and the issues facing it.
  • To enhance and sharpen their leadership skills by providing an environment where consensus building, group problem solving, and creativity are encouraged.
  • To educate participants in making sound judgments and explore solutions to problems in business and the community.
  • To challenge graduates of the program to serve as volunteers on appointed and elected boards, participate in community work, and offer their services in government and non-profit organizations.
  • To communicate the benefits of Leadership Sanford to the community.


The program is limited to 20 participants. Open to business men and women of Lee County who have demonstrated leadership aptitude and who represent a cross section of interested, motivated, and concerned citizens. After a thorough review of all submitted applications, the participants will be selected in an effort to form a group of geographic, racial, gender, and occupational balance.


Tuition for the Leadership Sanford Program is $950 for Chamber members and $1200 for non-Chamber members. This fee covers all expenses, including meals and program materials. Any applicants interested in tuition assistance may submit a written request. A limited number of scholarships are available.

Topics Include:

  • Understanding yourself and others
  • Political leadership—participants have a chance to meet with local and state government leaders
  • Economic Development in Lee County - A look at economic development in Lee County, including a tour of some of Lee County’s industries
  • Leadership in Public Education - A look at Lee County’s public education system, including a look inside our schools
  • The Character of Leadership - Ethics and Etiquette - This has been one of the favorite sessions for past graduates, includes a 1/2 day session on dining and business etiquette
  • Communicating with your community - understanding diversity
  • Leadership Challenges - managing change in a static world
  • City and County Government - Talk with our City and County department heads about growth challenges for Sanford and Lee County.


Classes meet on voted days of the month.

In order to make the program worthwhile and interesting for participants, each meeting’s time schedule may vary from 4-6 hours, depending on the topic. Participants will be given a complete list of times at the first session.


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Mar 19 - City Council to hear public comments on economic development

The City Council will consider modifying its incentive agreement with manufacturing company Caterpillar Inc., according to the agenda. *Article from…

Mar 16 - Raleigh Executive Jetport is our economic lifeline

Sanford has been a manufacturing community for over 100 years. *Editorial from The Sanford Herald. 

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