Leadership Lee County


Leadership Lee County is a proactive series of retreats, seminars and site visits designed to expose current and emerging leaders to Southwest Florida’s greatest challenges and opportunities. The 12 week intensive program begins with a look at our community history followed by a retreat. Full-day sessions follow every other Friday for the next 12 sessions ending in April, see the attached calendar. Full -day sessions begin at 8:30 am with a networking luncheon and conclude generally by 4:30 p.m. A graduation dinner and celebration conclude the program activities and celebrate the new community leaders joining the auspicious alumni group.

Leadership Lee County addresses topics including our community history, community trusteeship, servant leadership, economic bases, healthcare, transportation, education, growth management, social challenges, law enforcement and criminal justice, agriculture, local government, media, the developer’s perspective, the arts, cultural diversity and the role of volunteerism within our community. Programs are held at various locations throughout Lee County, providing participants an opportunity to view some of our community’s unique facilities and assets.

Participants in Leadership Lee County are selected after submitting a completed application, which is thoroughly reviewed by the selection committee. In selecting the class, committee members first select the most qualified candidates by reviewing all aspects of the application. They then develop a class from those candidates, which provides the best mix of public/private representation, as well as adequate geographic participation.  The program was originally a joint venture of the Cape Coral and Fort Myers Chambers of Commerce and the Business Development Corporation of Southwest Florida. It proved to be a tremendously successful first effort by these organizations and the overall Lee County community in developing a countywide perspective and appreciation for issues that have far-reaching impact. Thus, Leadership Lee County began the development of a pool of leaders who shared common knowledge and the desire for a common vision for our community.

On January 1, 1988, the newly consolidated Chamber of Southwest Florida assumed sole administrative responsibility for Leadership Lee County. The program is supported by the staff of the Chamber and is governed by a Steering Committee composed of program alumni who hold leadership positions throughout the community. Steering Committee members serve two-year terms.

Leadership Lee County is in session now after a pause due to the pandemic.  The next class will be forming in October of 2021.


For more information about our Leadership Program contact The Chamber at chamberswf@gmail.com.