Leadership Central Kentucky


Leadership Central Kentucky is a program to: educate and inform individuals on issues and opportunities for all of our region’s communities; create awareness and understanding of how each county’s actions affect the others; and to help foster a regional vision for the Bluegrass. Its vision seeks to build a network of committed, informed and progressive citizens connected across institutions and county lines. These leaders of the new century embrace and embody the philosophy that our region will realize its highest potential through working together.

The Leadership Central Kentucky Board seeks to identify those individuals most likely to utilize their regional leadership abilities for a long-term benefit. Applicants must either work or live in any of the following eight counties: Bourbon, Clark, Fayette, Franklin, Jessamine, Madison, Scott, and Woodford. Approximately twenty-four individuals will be selected to participate in the program. These leaders and potential leaders will be active in business, education, the arts, religion, government, community-based organization. Attention is taken to reflect the diversity of the Bluegrass Region’s communities.

Participants will be chosen by the Leadership Central Kentucky Board based upon the information completed on the application. They will be seeking a diverse class, professionally, geographically, ethnically and gender-wise. Preference will be given to individuals who have successfully completed a local leadership program.

A mandatory Orientation kicks the program off the third Thursday and Friday in August and thereafter, the third Wednesday September through May, class members travel to one county per month with a focus on community and regional topics such as transportation, education, economic development, quality of life, public advocacy, and agri-tourism, . These topics are covered by knowledgeable speakers and panels, tours, interactive exercises and class discussions.

Sessions will last an average of eight hours between 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. Sessions will be located throughout the region. Times and locations will be sent prior to sessions. Participant is responsible for their own transportation to the county. Once in the county, bus transportation is provided between venues. Any participant missing more than two regular full day sessions, in half-day increments, will not graduate from the program

Tuition for Leadership Central Kentucky is $600, payable no later than August 11, 2014. A limited number of partial scholarships are available. If financial assistance is sought please attach a letter officially requesting a scholarship and stating your reasons. The scholarship request must accompany the completed application to be considered. Requests for scholarship assistance are completely confidential. (Note: no full scholarships are awarded.)


• Broaden perspectives and understanding of the Bluegrass Region
• Meet local, regional and state leaders
• Develop and expand network of contacts
• Visit county sites and facilities
• Gain exposure to both current county and regional issues and developments
• Build friendships and working relationships with class members


2014-15 Class Presented By



Unified Trust

Leadership Central Kentucky Studies Health Services and Quality of Life in Fayette County

Article by Carmen Chaffin, Nicholasville Police Department
Living in or frequenting an area regularly, you often aren't aware of the great stories of the people behind the scenes impacting the character and culture of a region or the way those people can directly connect to the quality of life that you enjoy. Anticipating a January day full of informative lectures and panel discussions, the Leadership Central Kentucky class was instead treated to a rediscovery of Lexington and Fayette County through the eyes and work of the people making it a better place for all of us to live.

The day began at Commerce Lexington with a welcome from Kevin Stinnett, Councilman At-Large, Lexington-Fayette Urban County Government. As a native Lexingtonian, Councilman Stinnett is energetic about the direction that Fayette County and the region are heading. He explained the challenges and opportunities of a merged government dependent upon payroll for 84% of its revenue. He detailed the importance of maintaining and creating new employment opportunities and leveraging upcoming infrastructure improvements in Scott and Jessamine counties. In addition, he expressed his support of the LIFT (Local Investments for Transformation) local-option sales tax proposal, currently the focus of House Bill 1, as a economic benefit to the region as well as a way to fund the large infrastructure needs of Lexington and Fayette county.

Dr. Rice Leach, Commissioner of Health of the Lexington-Fayette County Health Department, offered a lively overview of the Community Health Improvement Plan. He explained that Kentucky is rated the 47th healthiest state in the country and we have a long way to go to get us to be one of the top performers. He explained the direct relationship between employment, quality of life and healthcare supported by community polls indicating the top 3 public health concerns are obesity, safe neighborhoods and unemployment.

Traveling to the University of Kentucky Chandler Hospital, Dr. Mark Evers of Markey Cancer Center and Joe Claypool presented on the regional impact of UK HealthCare and we toured the new facilities. The combined goals of "The Markey" and UK HealthCare would decrease cancer deaths in the state by 50% and provide services so that no one would have to leave the state to have their healthcare needs met. Focus on the Commonwealth and Central Appalachia and receiving NCI (National Cancer Institute) designation has increased "The Markey's" ability to serve over 80,000 patients per year with over 3,000 new cases. Efforts to leverage community healthcare providers in Georgetown and Clark County as well as transitioning primary services to the future Turfland facility will enable the region to have access to advanced subspecialty care while still maintaining the efficiency, quality and patient safety that is a cornerstone of UKHealthCare.

The afternoon session began with lunch from Newks Eatery and art viewing at ArtsPlace followed by the Quality of Life Panel discussion. The opportunity to vote for the public art design for the Oliver Lewis Way Bridge was an added bonus. Nan Plummer (LexArts), Rasheedah El-Amin (The Lyric Theatre), Renee Jackson (Downtown Lexington Corporation), Stephanie Harris (Lexington Art League) and Penny Ebel (LFUCG Parks and Recreation) inspired awe with the expanse of cultural and recreational sights, places, and events that their devoted work brings to the Lexington area. The festivity continued with a driving tour of wall murals and public art eliciting some insightful debate on the definition of art, its place and historical significance.

The final stop was at Country Boy Brewery and Taproom for a tour and tasting. Opening in 2012, it is one of several craft breweries that is having an impact on the exploding local bar and distillery landscape of the region. The owners are Kentucky natives and are passionate about their beer and their business. The class enjoyed spirited education on the challenges, specifically the pending legislative battle over direct distribution for larger breweries, as well as the prospects for their industry both regionally and statewide.

The importance of Fayette County and its benefits to the region in the areas of Health Services and Quality of Life was obvious based on the larger economic and employment base that it maintains. However, after a day of re-introduction to Fayette County provided by the dedicated professionals making the everyday decisions, one cannot only see the economic advantages that Lexington has on the Central Kentucky region but also how its culture, small businesses and focus on individual access and quality of healthcare make this region a better place to live and work.