Lauren Bonner of Carbondale is among 30 professionals across eight states named to the newest class of the Delta Regional Authority's Delta Leadership Institute.
Bonner will join fellows from the seven other Delta states to participate in the 10-month DLI Executive Academy to help further their skills in community leadership, policy development, and regional collaboration to drive economic growth across the Mississippi River Delta and Alabama Black Belt regions.
Bonner serves as an aide in the office of U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin. Other locals named to this year's class include Deborah Barnett of Marion, director of business incubator programs and interim associate director of the SIU Research Park; Jamie Green of Murphysboro, president of Murphysboro Main Street; and Brooke Guthman of Murphysboro, member services manager at the Egyptian Electric Cooperative Association.
The Fellows will participate in an intensive, 10-month executive leadership training program focused on developing competencies through site visits, best practice case studies, executive coaching and mentoring, and regional project development. The program consists of six multi-day seminars throughout the Delta region culminating with a graduation in Memphis, Tenn.
"DLI is providing the next generation of change agents with the skills and abilities to address some of the most pressing issues facing the Delta. I congratulate the Fellows on their selection," said DRA Chairman Chris Caldwell. "The Delta needs bold individuals to develop and capitalize on the many opportunities available to the Region and DLI provides these individuals with the skill set to do that."
Upon graduation, Delta Leadership Institute Fellows will become members of the Delta Leadership Network, a peer-driven working group foster regional collaboration, resource sharing, and continued education to support addressing the Delta's most pressing issues.
Since 2005, DLI's Executive Academy has enhanced the leadership skills, policy knowledge and networks of community members in the Delta region. After graduation, DLI graduates become members of the Delta Leadership Network, which includes more than 500 community leaders.