A group of youth from South Florida is suing state officials for their inaction on climate change, arguing that sea level rise threatens their future prosperity. Whether or not their effort succeeds, these young people’s engagement and commitment to safeguarding their communities makes me hopeful about the next generation of leaders.
Insights, inspiration and opportunities to create a more vibrant and resilient future.
Filtering by Tag: Leadership
Leadership is a practice, not a position. I sat down this week with Forefront and their partner, i-D Leadership Consulting, to learn more of their noble efforts to transform stakeholders in Illinois’ nonprofit and philanthropic ecosystem into adaptive leaders. But what does adaptive leadership even mean?Read More
Influence can take time to emerge. Earlier this week, I reconnected with a high school friend I hadn’t seen in 30 years. She mentioned the positive impact our teenage friendship had on her in subsequent years. I didn't realize. What seems to me like a simple action or gesture can for others carry potent meaning that we might never realize.
California became the first state in the nation to set carbon reduction goals when it passed AB 32, the Global Warming Solutions Act, on August 30, 2006. This landmark legislation was just the initial step in climate leadership for the Golden State, which extended its cap and trade program to 2030 just last month.
Oberlin Diaries 8*: Bonus Dividends
The envelope was a surprise. Bright pink, handmade, and with a simple “To: Peter” on the front, it was given to me by one of the valiant college students that help lead the Foresight Prep @ Oberlin College program. For many years, I've kept a folder of all the thank you cards I’ve received as a just-in-case antidote to any future dark days.
Oberlin Diaries 6: Steering the Future
My grandfather let me drive. I was 10, and he had to operate the pedals. I sat on his lap steering us down the two-lane country road. If I started to drift out of our lane, he would gently suggest a correction: “Maybe you want to turn us a bit to the right?” If an oncoming car were in sight, he’d momentarily make the correction himself, although never suggesting I relinquish my grip.
Oberlin Diaries 4: Risk and Its Rewards
You never know. For some, the phrase invokes paralyzing fear. For me, it presents a motivating challenge. When the Foresight Prep @ Oberlin College summer program was launched four years ago, part of the fun was seeing if we could do it: Create a best-of-class experiential education program that empowered highly-diverse, sustainability-minded teenage leaders. Participants arrive never completely knowing what to expect; we teachers are never certain what our students will be like. We navigate the unknown together, forging community, knowledge and connections that in many cases far outlast the two-week seminars. Such experiences are essential for a more vibrant and resilient future.
One of the five top leadership qualities that this summer’s Foresight Prep students identified was “inclusive.” But what does inclusivity even mean?Read More
Oberlin Diaries 2*: Launching Pads
I’m trying to become dispensable. It can be a tricky balancing act, constantly judging when to intervene, and when to allow my teenage students to find voice and agency in the struggle to overcome whatever challenge has been created for them. They’re inherently more capable of spanning and integrating their geographical, economic and racial divides more quickly than any exercise I could devise.
The more I explore the concept of leadership, the more nuanced it becomes. I hope to dive into its many facets and elements over time in this weekly blog. For today, let’s celebrate what 14 current high school students came up with when asked: What does leadership even mean?Read More
Oberlin Diaries 1*: Forging Adjacencies
I’m living on an island. Surrounded by fields instead of water, the small Ohio town of some 8000 residents to which I’ve temporarily relocated is still an island. It’s quiet, pastoral, isolated, and yet connected to the other islands, and eventually the Cleveland-area mainland, by causeways extending in several directions across the fertile moat.
Astute oversight is everything. Every member of the Foresight Design Initiative Board of Directors is a strategic addition to the larger whole. Most recently, David Leopold, Director of Project Management at the City Digital division of UI Labs signed on. Connecting with smart, enthusiastic, constructively critical colleagues has been essential to my professional development.