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Available dates

Mar 12—Nov 19, 2020
10 daysModules info
Minnesota, United States
USD 3495
USD 349 per day


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About the course

Strengthen your knowledge, skills and passion to lead your nonprofit organization in this 10-month cohort program. Invest in your career, learn as a group, share best practices and prepare to implement proven change strategies in your nonprofit organization.

Develop your leadership abilities and help your organization reach its full potential in the St. Thomas Institute for Executive Director Leadership program. In this unique 10-month program, you’ll learn with a cohort of two dozen other executive nonprofit directors. This is a safe, supportive community in which to explore your personal, professional and organization goals. Discuss real-world nonprofit issues with colleagues who face similar challenges. Dig into the realities of leading social impact organizations in today’s rapidly changing world, and gain tools to address these challenges. Learn how to build trust, focus and engagement within your nonprofit, to support the launch of transformational initiatives.

This 10-month program begins every March and consists of ten full days of learning and connection. After the one-day orientation in March, the following months include two 2-day learning retreats at a Minnesota resort. You’ll also attend two 2-day learning retreats on the St. Thomas campus and one full day of action learning projects reflection at St. Thomas to close out your leadership journey.


The Institute for Executive Director Leadership program is a 10-month cohort program. The core concepts and tools learned in this program will prepare you to:

  • Assess your organization’s lifecycle, so you can focus development on the strategically vulnerable programs and systems
  • Engage with the authentic leadership action tools created by Dr. Robert Terry
  • Discover, understand, and engage your strengths and those of your leadership team, staff, and board by using Strengths Based Leadership by Tom Rath and Barry Conchie
  • Find new avenues for innovation and growth by learning Blue Ocean Strategy facilitated by Dr. John McVea, University of St. Thomas
  • Learn and practice design thinking and methodologies to develop and enhance new programs and services
  • Explore and practice creating mutually respectful, high performing relationships between the board and executive staff

Who should attend

The Institute for Executive Director Leadership program is for non-profit leaders and those pursuing leadership roles in social enterprises. Our participants come with a strong desire to learn, and a readiness to engage with peers. Because participants bring their real-world organizational challenges and opportunities, we are able to explore nonprofit management and leadership practices that they can learn and implement in their organizations.

Ideal candidates for this program are:

  • Ready to explore the personal, professional and organizational challenges and opportunities of leading social enterprises
  • Seeking knowledge and support to help fulfill individual and organizational goals
  • Ready to engage with peers

Course reviews

Institute for Executive Director Leadership: IEDL

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