RCMA’s Executive Director Isabel Garcia has just finished an intensive session of classes as part of the Cornerstone Class Program of Leadership Florida. This prestigious program brings together visionary leaders from various for-profit and nonprofit organizations across the state, fostering an environment of growth, collaboration, and innovation. The goal of the program is to recharge the leadership skills of statewide community leaders and to educate and inspire them to work for a better Florida.
Throughout the program, Garcia was able to engage in its comprehensive curriculum, which included seminars, workshops, and interactive discussions, led by renowned experts and influential leaders from various sectors.
“It is a very demanding, very rigorous program,” said Garcia. “We met for six separate weekends during the course of nine months, learning about the state’s economy, transportation issues, our ports, and about the conservation efforts that are taking place. We really covered a lot of ground.”
With such a wide range of executives taking part in the program, there were lots of people to meet and opportunities that can benefit RCMA.
“As with many of the other executives who attended the program, my long-term goal was to fine tune my leadership skills,” said Garcia. “But one of my immediate goals was to make strategic connections. This kind of exposure to other executives helps build connections and resources with other passionate executives, and those can be extremely valuable to RCMA. It was great to meet influential people who were not familiar with RCMA, and to see if partnering our organizations might foster benefits for both.”
The process of being accepted to the Leadership Florida program is equally as rigorous. The program runs for nine months with attendance mandatory for all participants.
“I am so honored that former Florida Chief Financial Officer Alex Sink recommended me for the program. It is a humbling experience to be recognized alongside such exceptional leaders, which made me eager to absorb as much knowledge as possible to strengthen RCMA’s visibility and impact among these leaders. I am very grateful to Alex for the recommendation.”
When asked why she wanted to attend the program, Garcia admits that her schedule made it a difficult choice, but one she is thankful she made.
“I am proud to have been a part of the Leadership Florida Program. It did so many things for me, both personally and professionally. It not only enhanced my leadership capabilities but it also enabled me to forge valuable partnerships and gain fresh perspectives on how to move RCMA forward. As we strive to be the driving force for providing quality child care, education, and resources for some of Florida’s most vulnerable children and their families. I am thrilled to have been part of this program.
“Learning is a process that never ends. A person does not have to be born a leader to become one and with the appropriate training and understanding, anyone can become an effective leader.”