The Leadership Upshur Class of 2023-2024 pose for a photo June 5 at their graduation ceremony. (Photo courtesy Mitchell Shaw and Mike Ruffing)

Leadership Upshur celebrates its Class of 2023-2024 at graduation ceremony

BUCKHANNON — Thirteen people enrolled in the 2023-2024 Leadership Upshur Class officially marked the completion of the rigorous program with a graduation ceremony June 6.

The Leadership Upshur Graduation took place at 6 p.m. at the Buckhannon Opera House and featured dinner, a commencement ceremony and keynote speaker Robbie Morris, director of the Randolph County Development Authority.

The Class of 2023-2024 included Monica Cross, Derek Garrett, Abby Haddix, Daniel Huff, Richard Kump, Kerri McDaniel, Susan McKisic, Heather Powell, Elizabeth Shahan, Mitchell Shaw, Daniel Ware, Kenna Whitcomb and Anne Wilson.

Leadership Upshur is a course intended to help aspiring leaders in interpersonal, business, nonprofit, government and other fields develop the skills necessary to grow in their positions. According to its website, the program will expose the participants to skills and topics in leadership, habits, effectiveness, emotional intelligence, civic engagement and more.

Local founder Mike Ruffing, owner of Problem Solver’s Consulting, described this year’s group as “remarkable.”

“They overcame many obstacles to complete their program and executed a large-scale service project at Selbyville 4-H Camp,” Ruffing said. “They embody exactly what leadership is here in Upshur County. The entire board is very proud of all they were able to learn and accomplish this year!”

In addition to Ruffing, the Leadership Upshur Board of Directors includes Susan Aloi, Ronna Dittman, Alisa Lively, Lacy Ramsey, Tammy Reger, Robbie Skinner, Kristie Tenney, Brandon Tenney and Lisa Wharton.

Leadership Upshur is now accepting applications for the 2024-2025 program of study, and anyone interested can learn more at leadershipupshur.com.

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