Flourish is absolutely honored to take part in this year’s Flagship which is part of Leadership Greater Huntsville’s core program offering.
Flagship is a ten-month program designed for established senior leaders who have demonstrated leadership experience and proven success over significant business operations. Flagship provides in-depth knowledge of our community and facilitates small group projects that give back. Flourish’s CEO and Founder, Megan Nivens-Tannett, was accepted into this years’ program and will be providing a unique perspective piece once a month right here – so stay tuned to follow her journey!
In addition to opening and closing retreats, the program spends eight months highlighting greater Huntsville. Participants examine the Economic Base/Innovation, Education, Human Services, Healthcare, Local, State and Federal Government and Public Safety. To support this goal, small-group projects are developed to immediately impact change throughout the community. Flagship is an intense, immersive group learning experience that stresses the importance of leadership through service and provides an opportunity for community collaboration.
Our Leading Like a Local Day kicked off at Huntsville Community Drumline, where we were heard from many local area leaders and of course, Ms. Angela Walker who founded HCDL many years ago. A leadership grad herself, she’s now the program chair for the Leading Like a Local Day and is responsible for pulling together the days’ activities. Our entire group was broken into small groups (those groups that will be working on the small group projects – more to come on this later) and were thrust into the community in a variety of different ways. The intent behind the day is to give an in-depth glimpse into all things Huntsville and gain perspective around areas that you may not be aware of.
Our day didn’t disappoint and included a personalized tour of Glenwood Cemetary (which provided so much history around African Americans who made an impact in our community), a visit to Huntsville Revisited (one of the MOST amazing, historical spots that truly captures the rich history of Huntsville in ways that will keep you guessing), a trip to Light On Yoga (where we each got to experience aerial yoga), lunch at one of our favorite spots, Domaine South, a tour of the Downtown Huntsville Secret Art Trail, a tour of Lowe Mill, (one of the largest privately-owned arts facility in the southern United States), and ended the day at the always delish, Bandito Burrito.
Arts & Entertainment Day was also full of amazing things and kept the team in awe from start to finish. We began our day by getting an in-depth look at the amazing development efforts underway by one of our city’s leading commercial development companies, RCP Companies. We then got a tour of the highly anticipated Huntsville Amphitheatre, which is rumored to have some of the most amazing musicians on deck for the Spring of 2022, then took a tour of Stovehouse, an old factory that has been transformed into a village of eclectic restaurants, gourmet cocktail & coffee bars, event & entertainment spaces, boutique shopping, offices and more. While there, we learned about the history of one the most amazing coffee shops, Charlie Foster’s, and its founding team that started Merrimack Hall, a local performing arts center that offers inclusive programs that give people with special needs the chance to explore and express their creativity in a non-competitive setting.
We then toured Lowe Mill and got an up-close and personal dive into several of the local artists and their crafts. We then met with the Von Braun Center’s General Manager and the Owner and Coach of the Huntsville Havoc Hockey Team to learn a bit about the great things they do for our community through events, concerts and so much more. We finished the day learning a bit about the Huntsville Symphony Orchestra, watched Oakwood University’s Aeolians perform the most beautiful music, then ended our evening at Mars Music Hall with music and great food. To say the day was eventful is an understatement – and each piece showcased a beautiful perspective of Huntsville that makes this community the best place to call home.
Our most recent day was Human Services Day, which was an opportunity to get a behind-the-scenes look at the needs in our community by hearing from and experiencing several local area non-profits. If we can say that one day thus far has been emotionally impactful, it was this one, ya’ll. We’ve been involved in our community for a long time but learned SO MUCH about the major gaps that often go overlooked in Madison County. Kicking off at Huntsville’s well known First Baptist Church in Huntsville, we heard from several organizations and had a chance to ‘speed date’ with many – including Still Serving Veterans, Big Brothers Big Sisters, New Hope Children’s Clinic, New Futures, and the United Way of Madison County. We then toured Second Mile Development, the Downtown Rescue Mission, United Cerebral Palsy of Madison County, and the Manna House. In between, our entire group assisted the Food Bank of North Alabama’s mobile food pantry, which delivered hundreds of food items to those in need at Milton Frank Stadium. In addition, our team was really able to experience firsthand some of the challenges that those with disabilities face. Facilitated by UAH’s Kinesiology Department, we took part in wheelchair basketball, Paralympic boccia, sitting volleyball, and more. There were many other organizations that our group visited in their small groups (there are 54 of us, so sometimes we divide and conquer!) but overall, the day left our hearts so full and filled with ideas on how we can help give back to our community.
One thing that’s worth noting in case YOU are interested in giving back or if your company is looking to take part in a community effort, is the United Way of Madison County’s Community Needs Update – which can be found on their website. They’ve done a phenomenal job at highlighting core areas of need within our community and outlining those organizations that can and do directly impact those need areas. Everything from the lack of affordable housing to the skills gap for students due to COVID-19 can be found here. Get involved today – our community needs you!!
To learn more about Leadership Greater Huntsville, click here.