American Leadership Forum: Great Valley Chapter

Joining and Strengthening Diverse Leaders to Serve the Common Good

The American Leadership Forum (ALF) is a non-profit organization, national in scope, dedicated to joining and strengthening established leaders in order to serve the public good. It enhances leadership by building on the strengths of diversity and by promoting collaborative problem-solving within and among communities. The Great Valley Chapter of the American Leadership Forum joins 9 chapters across the country, and serves the 3-county region of Merced, Stanislaus, and San Joaquin in the Northern San Joaquin Valley of Central California.

The ALF – Great Valley Chapter Program

Annually, 20 to 24 established leaders drawn from every sector throughout this region are invited to participate in a yearlong intensive leadership development program.

The program consists of monthly seminars and intensive dialogue on:

  • collaborative leadership
  • consensus
  • conflict management
  • understanding differences
  • ethics training
  • leadership systems

ALF Fellows also participate in a week long Wilderness Experience.  The ALF Wilderness Experience is an opportunity for class members to remove themselves from everyday life and devote significant time for developing deep bonds with classmates and for personal introspection.  It is the week in the mountains that defines each class and creates the trust and understanding needed to work collaboratively back home.

ALF often becomes a passion and a lifelong commitment for Fellows.  Upon completing the year-long Fellows program, the graduates become Senior Fellows and join an active network of over 3,000 graduates nationwide, and continue to work together on regional problems. The deep relationships and networks of responsibility developed during the ALF experience will provide important benefits for the northern San Joaquin Valley.  As the network of bonded leaders grows, so too does its potential to bring about positive, constructive change.

The Cornerstones

ALF is dedicated to joining and strengthening leaders for the public good. Its program is based on the following “Cornerstones:”

  • Building trust and networks among diverse leaders
  • Motivating leaders to take responsibility and make a difference
  • Strengthening capacities for community change
  • Exploring the interconnectedness of communities, nations, and the world
  • Exploring and enriching personal values
  • Understanding and empowering self and others
  • Exploring, understanding, and valuing diversity
  • Inspiring leaders to a lifetime of active public engagement