Briefly describe your life as a leader before LIA.
My primary focus at the time was raising a family – and trying to build a successful business. My two most significant volunteer efforts were with Big Brothers/Big Sisters & The Greater Lafayette Chamber of Commerce.
How did you hear about LIA and/or its programs?
Through my involvement with the chamber of commerce.
What made you want to participate in an LIA program?
I knew I was getting to a point in my life priorities (raising children) where there would be available time to get more involved in our community. This was an excellent opportunity to get a good overview of what made our community tick, and educate myself on those various aspects.
What were you most nervous about prior to participating?
SIMSOC! (Simulated Society)
What was your favorite part of the experience?
SIMSOC! Spending time with a group of people that represented such a cross section of society, along with SIMSOC, made you look at issues from other points of view.
What surprised you the most about your experience?
That I ran for Mayor-President. I have often wondered if I would have taken that leap had I not participated. Between Leadership Lafayette, and leading the chamber of commerce, it is very unlikely that I would have ever run for office.
What has been your greatest or most rewarding achievement since your experience with LIA?
Other than family related-rewards, professionally, it would be having the honor of serving as Mayor-President of Lafayette for 12 years.
Who do you think would benefit from the program and why?
Anyone who cares about the next generation coming after themselves.
Is there any advice you’d like to give future participants?
Don’t do it simply to build a résumé, do it because you’re looking to give back.