Leadership Fort Wayne celebrates 51 grads in Class of 2023

FORT WAYNE, Ind. —Yesterday, 51 individuals celebrated their graduation from the Leadership Fort Wayne (LFW) program. The graduation ceremony, part of Greater Fort Wayne Inc.’s annual LFW Alumni Breakfast, served as a milestone in the Class of 2023’s commitment to servant leadership and community trusteeship.

The event honored the 41st cohort of the program since its founding in 1983, adding 51 graduates to the growing 1,500+ person alumni network. Many alums have gone on to serve on or lead nonprofit boards, hold elected office, or run businesses.

LFW is a nine-month program that provides an in-depth view of the many facets of the community while developing each participant’s leadership skills. By developing these skills, participants are better prepared to positively impact the community and their workplaces.

Highlights of the program include behind-the-scenes tours of local landmarks, presentations by community leaders and leadership development experts, skills assessments, and Community Action Team projects that help local nonprofits solve real-world challenges. The Class of 2023 participated in monthly program days covering topics including community history, public safety, and diversity, equity, and inclusion. LFW participants can also gain additional leadership experience serving as intern board members for local nonprofits.

“This class is incredibly talented, and they are passionate about serving and improving our community,” said Meghan Short, director of investor programs at GFW Inc. “It has been an honor to watch them discover and develop their innate talents. I can’t wait to see them lead the way to a successful future for Allen County.”

Members of the Leadership Fort Wayne Class of 2023 and their sponsoring individuals/organizations are:

Josh Ambrose
Custer: Workplace Furniture and Design
Ryan Bauer
Fort Wayne-Allen County Airport Authority
Jasmine Bejar
One Lucky Guitar, Inc.
Tony Belton
Purdue University Fort Wayne
Mo Bender
Fort Wayne Community Schools
Wayne Bennett
BFGoodrich / Michelin North America
Jamie Berndt
Lincoln Financial Group
Jill Boggs
Visit Fort Wayne
Susan Brown
Ivy Tech Community College
Willie Burton
Fort Wayne Fire Department
Keiara Carr
Amani Family Services & LFW Alumni Donors
Humair Chowdhry
Centier Bank
Jerry Cunningham
Wayne Combustion Systems
Katie Davis
Indiana Michigan Power
Shelly Detcher
Camp Red Cedar
Connor Fleck
Barrett McNagny, LLP
Thad Gerardot
Lincoln Financial Group
Anne Hall
Community Transportation Network & LFW Alumni Donors
Jared Herndon
Ash Brokerage
Brian Hickam
Indiana Tech
Elaine Jones
Stillwater Hospice
Lisa Keirns
STAR Financial Bank
Andrew Kopec
Purdue University Fort Wayne
Ivy Kurgan
Lutheran Health Network
Mike Landgraf
Canterbury School
Jonathan Leist
City of Fort Wayne
Emily Leonard
Fort Wayne City Utilities
Aarón Madrigal Gutiérrez
Steel Dynamics, Inc.
Mitch McKinney
Fort Wayne Police Department
Fred McKissack
The Journal Gazette
Andie Mosley
AWS Foundation
Frank Navarro
Jessica Pater
Parkview Mirro Center for Research and Innovation
Dena Pickens
The League & AWS Foundation
Kylie Riecken
Bowen Center & The Lutheran Foundation
Mike Ripley
Schvalla Rivera
United Front Initiative
Adriane Roberts
Vera Bradley
Jeff Roberts
Fort Wayne Community Schools
Sofia Rosales-Scatena
Fort Wayne Police Department
D’Quan Ruth
YMCA of Greater Fort Wayne & 3Rivers Federal Credit Union
Tasha Sector
Metropolitan Title of Indiana, LLC
David Sherman
122nd Fighter Wing, Indiana Air National Guard
Tyler Sipe
Physicians Health Plan of Northern Indiana
Eric Steenman
Lake City Bank
Steven Townes
The Regional Chamber of Northeast Indiana & CSX Transportation
Jenna Tyler
Summit Brands
Rachel Vedder
Design Collaborative
Ashley Warren
STAR Financial Bank
John Watkins
Don Ayres Honda
Josiah Wells
Parkview Health

Applications for the LFW Class of 2024 closed in October. Individuals interested in participating in the Class of 2025 can visit LeadershipFW.com or email leadership@gfwinc.com for more information about applying.

About Greater Fort Wayne Inc.

Greater Fort Wayne (GFW) Inc. serves Fort Wayne and Allen County, Indiana, as its primary point of contact for economic growth. GFW Inc. focuses on prosperity and community vibrancy through economic development, advocacy, programs and resources that support business success, leadership development, graduate retention and community engagement.