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2nd class of Leadership Orleans begins program

Photos by Tom Rivers: The 2019 Leadership Orleans class includes, front row, from left: Susan Howard, Pattie Kepner, Beth Brown, Ellen Eaton, Vanja Zinaja, Jessica Downey, Carly Ward, Elizabeth Haibach, Rachel Hicks, Nicole Davis and Amanda Pollard. Second row: Sarah Olinger, Jerod Thurber, Jonathan Oakes, James Olinger, Dan Doctor, Jim Bensley, Greg Reed, Brittany Scott, Delano Alvarez, Steve Mowers, Melissa Blanar and Sean Casher. Not pictured: Angela DiRosa, Michele Bokman and Tessa Hartway.

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 10 January 2019 at 8:19 am

Skip Helfrich, Leadership Orleans director, leads a retreat on Wednesday. He went over personality profiles, and how different types of personalities tend to thrive or struggle in different situations. Some people thrive on getting things done in an efficient manner. Some are very focused on details. Others are very social and like to involve many people in the process.

LYNDONVILLE – Leadership Orleans welcomed the second class of the program with a kickoff retreat over two days that will help members learn about themselves, their classmates and the community.

The class has 26 members and started with a two-day retreat on Wednesday at the White Birch Golf Course in Lyndonville. That retreat will conclude this evening.

Leadership Orleans started in 2018. The year-long program meets monthly and the comes from a cross section of the community, including government department heads, farm leaders, agency directors and other business officials. The program picked residents who have demonstrated leadership abilities, interest in community affairs, and a commitment to Orleans County’s future.

Each month the group learned about a different sector of the community, including government, arts and culture, volunteerism and non-profit organizations, community health, tourism and recreation, agribusiness, economic & workforce development, and education.

This year’s class includes:

• Delano Alvarez, Quality Associate III, Baxter Healthcare

• James Bensley, Dir. Dept. Planning and Development, County of Orleans

• Melissa Blanar, Dir. Orleans County Office for the Aging, Orleans County

• Michele Bokman, Director of Operations, SUNY GCC

• Beth Brown, Business Administration Manager, Orchard Dale Fruit Company, LLC

• Sean Casher, Human Resources Business Partner, CRFS, LLC

• Nicole Davis, Director of Residential Services, GCASA

• Angela DiRosa, Executive Director, Orleans Community Health Foundation

• Daniel Doctor, Community Outreach Liaison, Medina Central School District

• Jessica Downey, Health Educator/Community Outreach, Orleans Community Health

• Ellen Eaton, Dir. of Recruiting and Employee Experience, Quorum Group dba Takeform

• Elizabeth Haibach, Librarian, Hoag Library

• Tessa Hartway, Dir. Of Marketing and Branding/Business Development, Talis Equity

• Rachel Hicks, Agent/Customer Services, Albion Agencies

• Susan Howard, 1st Assistant District Attorney, Orleans County

• Pattie Kepner, Assoc. Exec. Dir. Quality/Corp. Compliance, Arc of Genesee Orleans

• Steve Mowers, President, CRFS, LLC

• Jonathan Oakes, Winemaker/Cidermaker Vice President, Leonard Oakes Estate Winery

• James Olinger, Farm Operations Assistant Manager, Sandy Knoll Farms, Inc.

• Sarah Olinger, Credit Analyst, Farm Credit East, ACA

• Amanda Pollard, Assistant Branch Manager, Tompkins Bank of Castile

• Greg Reed, Executive Director,  GLOW YMCA – Orleans County YMCA

• Brittany Scott, Sr. HR Representative, Baxter Healthcare

• Jerod Thurber, Sales Mgr./Cider Mgr., Leonard Oakes Estate Winery/Lynoaken Farms

• Carly Ward, Dir. of Planning and Oper., Community Action of Orleans & Genesee, Inc.

• Vanja Zinaja, QA Manager, Baxter Healthcare ​

Skip Helfrich leads a discussion at the opening retreat.


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