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Thought Leadership Region Matters

ARC Now Accepting Applications for 2020 Regional Leadership Institute Class

Atlanta Region Matters

By Junior Knox

Applications are now being accepted for the Atlanta Regional Commission’s 2020 Regional Leadership Institute (RLI). Respected for both its network- and knowledge-building approach, RLI exposes a diverse group of participants to the issues, challenges, and opportunities facing metro Atlanta, such as equity, housing, transportation, and water resources.

The 2020 RLI program will be held from September 20-25 in Savannah. The application period closes on March 23, 2020.

Aimed at both established and emerging leaders, the week-long program invites participation from the 10-county metro area and features subject-matter experts, panel discussions, and interactive sessions focused on critical issues like housing affordability, education, and economic competitiveness. These issues require skilled leadership, and RLI is designed to convene metro Atlanta’s leaders to build an intersectional and regional approach to solving them.

But perhaps the most important thing people take away from RLI is the network they build with fellow participants. Since 1991, RLI has engaged 50 leaders each year from a variety of sectors and throughout the 10-county Atlanta region — building an alumni network of more than 1,500.

“Leadership can be a lonely place,” said David Hartnett, Chief Economic Development Officer with the Metro Atlanta Chamber, who participated in RLI last year. “The biggest benefit of RLI is learning who the other leaders are, and who you are as a leader. It’s a challenge, but it opens you up to others’ experiences that can help make your leadership even stronger.”

RLI’s alumni network is critical to the success of the Atlanta region’s development. These leaders work together to help local governments, businesses, and nonprofits collaborate around important issues that cross sectors and political boundaries.

“RLI breaks down siloes, setting the stage for fresh connections and deep collaboration that would be unlikely to take place otherwise,” said Stephen Causby, Manager of ARC’s Community Partnerships Group.

The 2019 RLI class included topics such as the roots and outcomes of systemic inequality, understanding key performance indicators of critical community issues, innovations in smart cities and mobility, and the economics of education, among others.

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