Many Hands Make the Masters Give Back Program in San Francisco Successful

Many Hands Make the Masters Give Back Program in San Francisco Successful

The class was filled with laughter, learning, and people making connections. It was amazing.”  
—attendee Darcy Richardson, health educator

We in The Leadership Challenge Community know that being successful as a leader—in fact, in just about anything in life—requires collaboration. We don’t do it alone. And that was certainly the case with the Masters Give Back program recently offered just prior to this year’s The Leadership Challenge Forum in San Francisco. 

With Certified Masters Dan Schwab and Tom Pearce taking the lead, authors Jim Kouzes and Barry Posner, along with Wiley staff members, worked together to reach out to their various contacts in the Bay Area’s nonprofit community to fill this year’s class to capacity. And on June 16 and 17 at the Hotel Nikko in the heart of the city 20 nonprofit leaders from a diverse range of Bay Area groups came together to create a stimulating dynamic for the program. Participants included leaders from organizations such as Youth Radio, the US Army, Camp Fire, Boys and Girls Club, Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy, Breathe California, and Larkin Street Youth Services.

As in years past, this Masters Give Back program was provided at no cost to participants in an effort to provide the advantage of The Leadership Challenge to aspiring community leaders who might otherwise not have access to the curriculum. Each participant completed the Leadership Practices Inventory® (LPI®) assessment prior to the first day’s session and over the course of the next one and-a-half days, everyone received coaching on their LPI report as well as a full set of workshop materials.  

This year’s participants were treated to a special session with Jim and Barry who joined in for a discussion about goals and challenges leaders in the nonprofit sector face. While Dan and Tom provided most of the program facilitation, which included experiential activities and lots of discussion time, Certified Master-in-Training KJ Jenison played a critical role in the program’s success keeping track of applications, tracking LPI data, and matching up the many Certified Masters and Certified Masters-in-Training who volunteered to provide one-to-one coaching with participants. 

Certified Masters-in-Training Terence Yeung and Amy Dunn also played important roles during this program.  Amy facilitated group activities. Terence presented the LPI to the group and walked people through their results. In addition, Brett Cooper, co-founder of Integris Performance Advisors, served as the program’s closing speaker and shared with participants his own nonprofit leadership experience working with the East Bay Stand Down, a program that supports veterans of all ages with medical, dental, spiritual, and emotional needs through a weekend rally.  

Following the onsite program, phone coaching was offered to any participant who was not able to stay for the one-on-one discussions directly following the workshop. Participants were also able to re-open their LPI assessments immediately following the workshop in an effort to gain additional feedback that could prove valuable to their leadership journey. 

We feel privileged to have had the opportunity to be a part of the program this year and to develop such a rich experience for these aspiring leaders. But we didn’t do it alone. So many people helped make this year’s Masters Give Back Program a success. In fact, with many hands, the load was light. And that’s why special thanks need to go out to everyone else who played a role, including: Ciaran Coleman, Brett Cooper, Amy Dunn, Dick Heller, Beth High, Evans Kerrigan, Bill Mugavin, Amy Savage, Terence Yeung, the amazing Wiley team and, of course, Jim Kouzes and Barry Posner and all of the incredible participants who took the time and made the commitment to learn to be the best leaders they can be.  

KJ Jenison, Director of Client Experience for Integris Performance Advisors &, believes in collaborative endeavors that empower others to grow both personally and professionally. He is a Certified Master-in-Training and can be reached at

Dan Schwab is a Certified Master and a 20+-year veteran working with The Leadership Challenge. An independent leadership and organizational consultant working with clients from the private, non-profit and governmental sectors, he can be reached at or at  

Tom Pearce, a Certified Master of The Leadership Challenge, has been teaching and consulting with clients using The Leadership Challenge for more than 10 years. He can be reached at s


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