Leadership Winter Haven was founded in 1980. Since that time the program has been dedicated to developing a well informed and diverse pool of leadership talent ready to help the community and area reach its full potential. In the course of the program, participants leadership skills are nurtured while they are exposed to the spectrum of business, industry, governmental and social issues that confront Winter Haven’s current leaders and will challenge the leaders of tomorrow.
Since the program’s inception as one of Florida’s earliest community leadership programs (and Polk County’s first), over 500 people have completed the course. Leadership Winter Haven alumni represent a strong communications network within Greater Winter Haven uniting people of varied interests and backgrounds. From agribusiness to entrepreneur, finance to public servant, the program is rich with diversity.
LWH graduates possess a unique understanding of the complexity of our region. Participants learn first hand the assets, opportunities, challenges and needs within our community, county and Central Florida.
Graduates of Leadership Winter Haven are found throughout not only business, government and community organizations but serving as effective, aware volunteer leaders on Boards of civic organizations and community projects. The benefit of this leadership program is the shaping of a vibrant yet diverse group of individuals who, through well informed decisions, will help our community face tomorrow’s challenges.
You might be wondering about the application process, who should participate, how individuals are selected and what you stand to gain from this experience. If so, check out our applicationbelow for more details. The application will give you all the information you will need to learn more about this program! Leadership Winter Haven Applications for Class 44 will open in May 2024.
2023 - 2024 Class Schedule:
Tuesday, September 12th - Wednesday, September 13th: Orientation
Wednesday, October 18th: City of Winter Haven Day
Wednesday, November 15th: Arts & Culture Day
Wednesday, December 13th: Polk County Day
Wednesday, January 17th: Education Day
Wednesday, February 21st - Thursday, February 22nd: Tallahassee Trip
Wednesday, March 20th: Tourism Day
Wednesday, April 17th: Ag & Industry Day
Wednesday, May 15th: Regional Impact Day
Wednesday, June 19th: Health & Social Services Day
Wednesday, June 26th: Closing Retreat & Graduation