Retreat Accelerates Class 40 Leadership Omaha Experience 

They came. They saw. They connected. And that’s going to translate into bigger impact for the Greater Omaha community.

Members of Leadership Omaha’s milestone Class 40 accelerated their LO experience last month with a three-day, two-night opening retreat at Camp Carol Joy Holling in Ashland, NE. Despite the laid-back atmosphere – enhanced by the rolling hills and tree-filled landscape – the retreat was an intense time with goals to speed up the “get to know you” process, set the tone for the program year and focus on Leadership Omaha goals: communication, awareness, leadership and motivation.

“We spent the majority of time on leadership, both from a personal perspective and a community perspective,” says Liz Kerrigan, the Chamber’s leadership strategist.

Class members spent a fair bit of time in meeting rooms but also enjoyed soaking in the serenity: sitting outside, taking walks, talking around a fire-pit… Over the course of the retreat, attendees gained a deeper understanding of how they learn, communicate and make decisions; identified their personal, professional, and community goals; and bonded with the members of their small groups.

“I appreciate the amount of connectivity the retreat creates. I feel like our small group and the class as a whole jump started our relationships by spending time together,” wrote one attendee after the event.

“This was a terrific retreat to kick off LO 40 and set the tone for growth,” wrote another.

Leadership Omaha is one of the longest-running community leadership programs in the nation, launched to develop leaders capable of strengthening and transforming the community.

Leadership Omaha Class 40 is made up of a diverse group of 48 men and women. The opening retreat behind them, they will now attend monthly, daylong seminars on community issues, including education, inclusivity and justice. Class members will also complete small group projects for the benefit of the Omaha community. Upon graduating in June, they will join a network of almost 1700 Leadership Omaha alumni.

At every opening retreat, there is an activity that demonstrates what groups can do together. This year the class created an art piece which exhibits the importance collaboration. Each individual painted their individual contribution to compose a successful bigger picture.

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