Ventura County Leadership Academy Announces Cohort XXVI

The Ventura County Leadership Academy (VCLA), founded in 1994, delivers on its mission of “connecting people and issues to strengthen our county” by developing, educating and inspiring a diverse group of leaders who aspire to enhance the quality of life in Ventura County.  The curriculum of year-long Academy is delivered through ten full-day interactive sessions and exposes the cohort members to critical issues in the region and current leaders in their fields of expertise. One of the sessions takes place in Sacramento where the cohort is given a detailed overview of the legislative process and then given the opportunity to meet with government officials.  Other session topics include education, public safety, health care, economic development, arts and culture, agriculture, and housing.  Cohort members also complete an immersion activity, such as a police ride along or shadowing an elected official or volunteering at a non-profit organization.

VCLA also infuses personal leadership development throughout the curriculum with the goal of ensuring that our graduates recognize that leadership is a relational process and that leading at any level within any organization is a choice one must intentionally make. 

Here are the members of this year’s cohort:

Robert Albertson, Police Commander – City of Port Hueneme Police Department

Terri Anderson, Labor Relations Manager – County of Ventura – Probation Agency

Caitlin Brooks, Program Manager, Transportation Planning – Ventura County Transportation Commission

Jeff Chism, Captain, U.S. Navy – Commanding Officer – Naval Base Ventura County

Jennifer Duston, Client Partner – Franklin Covey

Julia Fogg, Professor of Religion, Chair Faculty Senate – California Lutheran University

Angel Garcia, District Representative – Office of Senator Hannah-Beth Jackson

Amber Hahn, Assistant Manager, Mortgage – Ventura County Credit Union

Natalie Hernandez, Assistant Public Information Officer – County of Ventura – Executive Office

Oscar Hernandez, Owner – Eight O Five Detail Shop

Maggie Kestly, President – Mid Valley Properties

Harry Mapanda, Director, Operations & Network Development – AmericasHealth Plan

Alejandra Martinez, Outreach Specialist – Ventura County Community College District

Tracy McAulay, Management Analyst – County of Ventura – Executive Office

Melissa Miller, Community Development Manager – Ventura County Credit Union

Shari Mogridge, Worldwide Revenue Controller – The Trade Desk, Inc.

Nick Odenath, President – Ventura County Deputy Sheriff’s Association

Dhruv Pandya, Information Security Specialist – J.D. Power

Rabiah Rahman, Attorney/Founder – Rabiah At Law

Susan Santangelo, Assistant Director of Health Services – Casa Pacifica

Jeremey Shumaker, Regional Director of Operations – American Medical Response & Gold Coast Ambulance

Katlyn Simber-Clickener, Recreation Coordinator – Pleasant Valley Recreation & Park District

Erika Singletary, Operations Specialist II – Ventura County Office of Education

Julius Sokenu, Interim President, Moorpark College – Ventura County Community College District

Betsy Swanson Hollinger, Manager, Learning & Organizational Dev – County of Ventura, CEO Human Resources

Shant Taslakian, Deputy District Attorney – Ventura County District Attorney

Eric Tennessen, Commander – Ventura County Sheriff’s Office

Christina Tokatlian, Forensic Scientist/CODIS Administrator – Ventura County Sheriff’s Office

Sarene Wallace, Marketing & Communications Supervisor – Ventura County Community College District

Jess Weihe, Director of Marketing – Mustang Marketing

Cohort XXVI session dates:

Cohort Mixer – September 3, 2020

First Session – September 11, 2020
Second Session – October 9, 2020
Third Session – November 13, 2020
Fourth Session – December 3, 2020
Fifth Session – January 8, 2021
Sixth Session – February 5, 2021
Seventh Session – Sacramento – February 21-February 23, 2021 (Sun-Tues)
Eighth Session – March 19, 2021
Ninth Session – April 9, 2021
Tenth Session – May 7, 2021
Graduation – May 13, 2021

For more information about how to get involved with the Ventura County Leadership Academy please contact:  Pattie Braga, VCLA Director via phone: (805) 797-3985 or email: [email protected]


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