Nominations for the Leadership Blount Class of 2021 are being accepted online starting today, Jan. 15, through Feb. 20 at www.leader shipblount.com. Nominees will be notified via email once the nomination is submitted and directed to complete an online application, the organization said Tuesday in a press release.

The Leadership Blount class year comprises nine comprehensive class days and two overnight retreats that are designed to build relationships, enhance leadership skills, increase civic engagement and to improve community understanding that leads to positive impact in Blount County.

“Class members will have a direct connection to community leaders and a direct impact on our community,” the release states.

Leadership Blount’s core program is designed for experienced leaders who are expected to participate through research, group facilitation and problem solving with a focus on the community’s most critical issues. The Leadership Blount experience does not end with the 10-month program. A personal commitment and a class commitment are made to the community for lifelong service. Participating in the alumni organization is expected and encouraged.

Nominees should have a sincere commitment and motivation to serve the community, as well as an exhibited demonstration of leadership abilities. Their work and community service should indicate they have a long-term commitment to Blount County. “All class members must have the full support of the organization or business they represent,” the release states.

No self-nominations or those made by immediate family members will be accepted.

The class of 36 people will be selected by a volunteer committee of Leadership Blount alumni from nominations received from the community. Selection is based on the quality and depth of the answers provided in the application.

Tuition for the program is $1,500, $150 of which must be paid by the participant personally. This payment covers all fees and course materials, as well as most meals and transportation. Optional or special activities may require additional costs. A limited number of partial scholarships are available for eligible candidates.

A volunteer board of directors and an executive director oversee the development of curriculum and administration of the program. Leadership Blount is designated by the IRS as a 501(c)(3) organization. For more information, call 865-984-9368 or email office@leadershipbount.com.

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