Leadership Lycoming celebrates latest class

Speaking at the graduation of the Leadership Lycoming Class of 2019, Jason Fink, president and CEO of the Williamsport/Lycoming Chamber of Commerce, spoke of all the people who had helped to get the idea up and operational over the years and those in the community that continue to support it.

Looking ahead, he told the class “you will be the future of it.”

“You’ve been through the program. You now have the opportunity to go out and touch many lives … Your eyes have been opened to a number of things that need attention here in this area. I strongly encourage you to get engaged,” he added.

Leadership Lycoming began in the late 1980’s when the first class of young leaders in the community was assembled. The goal was to have the group focus on issues in the community in various sectors, such as government, environment and education, to name a few. Currently the program begins in the fall and culminates with a graduation in June.

Anthony Pace, a member of the class from the Pennsylvania College of Technology, spoke at the ceremony held at the Williamsport Country Club Thursday. He shared some of the teambuilding activities the group had participated in early in their time together.

“The reality of those activities and other lessons learned on opening retreat were a bit more intangible. The early introduction allowed us to connect, neutralize our nervousness, and our hesitation to maintain a certain image of ourselves. It built a culture of comaraderie and comfort a feeling that was continuous throughout the program that continues up until today.”

He talked about the various topics they had covered during their time as the Leadership Lycoming Class and how the group had gained a better understanding of the area’s needs.

“We expected that we would learn a lot about the place we live and work. The reality is we learned a lot more than that,” he said.

“The reality is the program helped each of us to grow and nurture a respect for the people, services, agencies and leaders that make Williamsport and Lycoming County an exciting place to live,” Pace added.

During the event, Michael Gaetano, a local businessman, was awarded the Donna Bastian Leadership Lycoming Community Service Award.