Inspire. Develop. Connect. Serve.

Leadership Springfield is the premier program for leadership development in the Ozarks, designed to inspire, develop and connect leaders to serve the Springfield community. In over 30 years of operating, we have graduated more than 2,000 community leaders who are motivated and inspired to make an impact.

Program Overview

As a member of the national Association of Leadership Programs, Leadership Springfield provides three distinct community leadership programs for the Springfield metro area: the Signature Class, the Leadership Springfield Academy Class and the Access Class. In addition to these three programs, we offer ongoing membership opportunities for alumni to continue putting their class experience into action, through alumni engagement opportunities and more. Explore our community leadership programs.

Leadership Springfield’s flagship program takes community leaders on a nine-month tour of the city’s blue ribbons and red flags, devoting time to better understanding our own strengths as leaders, identifying the city’s needs, resources and opportunities, recognizing the value of bonding and bridging social capital and making a long term impact both individually and collectively as community leaders.

Each year, high school juniors across Springfield’s public and private schools learn about leading with their strengths while gaining a deeper knowledge of what it takes to keep the city running. Modeled after the nine-month Signature Class, the Leadership Springfield Academy Class engages the future workforce of our community and allows students to become more engaged and informed citizens.

New transplants to the city can plug into the community immediately through the Access Class – a one time fast-paced, two day program offered quarterly. This delivery model allows local leaders to get up to speed on major industry, initiatives and contacts. The Access Class also allows longtime Springfieldians an opportunity to participate in a community leadership program and expand their professional network without the time commitment of the flagship program.

Alumni Testimonials

Emily LettermanEmily Letterman
The places you visit are eye-opening. The people you meet are inspiring. The lessons you learn are impactful. To say Leadership Springfield is a transformational program would be an understatement.
Emily Letterman
Signature Class 35
Steve Kelly_2Steve Kelly_2
The Leadership Springfield Access Class was an amazing two-day immersive experience. It was a deep dive into all things Springfield in a condensed, perfectly scheduled format. Everything from our visit with City officials, panel of healthcare leaders, tour of large employers, and insights from our educational institutions, this experience was game-changing for me. Having just relocated to Springfield for a career opportunity, this was a critical piece to my understanding of what really makes this community work. I'm grateful for this program and to Carrie and the staff for putting it together. I highly recommend it!
Steve Kelly
Access Class 2
Dr. Tom PraterDr. Tom Prater
In the years since my Leadership Springfield experience (Class 5) I have continued to maintain social, professional and business relationships with many of my classmates. Even as a Springfield native, the experience certainly opened my eyes to new opportunities in the community.
Dr. Tom Prater
Signature Class 5
David WellsDavid Wells
My time in Leadership Springfield was full of valuable experiences. I learned about the inner workings of my community and how to conduct myself in a professional atmosphere. I developed my leadership skills and found the strength to say, “Follow me”.
David Wells
Academy Class 29

Calendar of Events

Thursday, December 2
6:30 pm

Friendsgiving 2021: A Virtual Gathering

Save your seat for Leadership Springfield’s second annual Friendsgiving community fundraising event! Come together virtually with friends, enjoy offerings from local businesses, and support a great cause! Friendsgiving is a fundraising event all about bringing people together to celebrate friendships, connections, and our community. Purchase one of two ticket options, join us for the in-person happy hour, and enjoy live demos and activities on Zoom for an evening everyone is sure to enjoy. This event if for EVERYONE, near or far, so invite your closest friends and get ready to make some memories! The focus of Friendsgiving is the value of bringing people together and giving everyone a seat at the table.
Monday, December 6
5:30 pm
The Backlot at the Alamo Drafthouse
4005 South Ave Suite A, Springfield, MO 65807

Access Class Happy Hour

This Access Class Happy Hour is open to Access Class 10 & SPS Access Class 4 graduates & their guests! You are invited to mix ‘n’ mingle with your fellow Access Class alumni and continue conversations started during your classes.
Tuesday, December 14
10:30 am

Discussions That Matter: Stability

Leadership Springfield alumni are invited to join Community Leadership Program peers from across the country for a virtual session discussing Stability featuring LeadSGF alumni and CEO of CoxHealth, Steve Edwards! Steve Edwards will be representing our community alongside other national panelists on December 14 at 10:30am. Steve’s stabilizing influence and efforts at CoxHealth, in the community, region, state, and even the nation drew attention to his strong leadership during Covid. Don’t miss this opportunity to hear from Steve Edwards and other strong leaders at this alumni professional development session. Discussions That Matter is a virtual series by the National Leadership Network (NLN) where they host inspiring expert panelists for conversations that impact our communities. As a member of the NLN, we get to offer our alumni – YOU – the chance to attend this event and be a part of the conversation, this time with one of our local leaders represented. Registration closes on December 12 at 7:00 pm.

Ready to learn more about our programs?