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50 for 50 | Leadership North Texas

Fifteen years ago, during a North Texas Commission executive committee planning session, then Chairman David Russell posed a question: How can we educate the next generation of regional leaders?


The answer led to a new regional initiative, Leadership North Texas, a graduate-level, regional leadership program that recruits, develops and supports leaders for North Texas.

Leadership North Texas launched with its inaugural class in 2009 with 26 leaders eager to learn more about the region, share the knowledge from their communities and deepen their connection across the region. Through a nine-month program, class participants learn about the history of the region, the changing demographics, arts and culture in North Texas, the global diversity of our region, our economy, social determinants of health, education and workforce, the cost of incarceration, sustainability and how to prepare for the next million new North Texans.

With more than 300 alumni, which includes numerous elected officials, business leaders, civic and higher education executives as well as non-profit and community leaders, the program continues to grow and make its impact on North Texas.

This includes launching a young professional program. Much like our former Chairman, the alumni of LNT asked the question: How can we get these rising stars thinking regionally?

In 2015, LNT University was launched to bring professional development and regional understanding to the future leaders of North Texas. Like its counterpart, LNT U attracts young business, municipal and higher education leaders who are eager to get ahead in their careers. And, to meet the demand for increased programming, LNT U will be rebranded in 2021 as Emerging Leaders of North Texas and two additional months of programming will be added to the curriculum.

Like many programs, LNT Class 12 is meeting virtually, but they aren’t letting the lack of in person connection stop them from forming bonds that will last a lifetime.

Applications are now open for LNT Class 13. If you’re interested in joining this cadre of regional leaders, please apply here.

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