Leadership LabBuild Leadership Skills
Grow Your Network
Lead Our Community

Join the 2022-2023 Leadership Lab Program!

DeRondal Bevly, Mentor   |   Cathy Yen, Mentor

Through the Lab, you will curate your own leadership journey with a series of in-person and virtual classes, a
ten-month program that offers personal/professional coaching, skills development and a curriculum based on the most urgent needs of our diverse West Cook community.

The Oak Park-River Forest Community Foundation’s Leadership Lab Program celebrates and supports the diverse set of people and skills required to make lasting change in our community. As part of the program, you commit to an ongoing journey of community leadership, identifying core issues while setting personal goals for growth and engagement. The Program has three important components:

Build, Grow, Lead

The Lab

Ten month program focused on leadership incubation for our community

The Library

Set of leadership resources available to all Lab participants and alumni

The League

Network of 200+ local leaders who have participated in the program and remain committed to the success of our region and each other
We will provide you with a set of core leadership competencies that belong in a community leader’s toolkit. Working with our coaching team, you will identify areas for your own professional growth, learn about opportunities for local involvement; and create your personal action plan to become the leader you know you can be.
LL ApplyNow

Fellows Leave With:

  • Curated leadership action plan
  • Leadership skills
  • Membership in the Leadership League
  • Toolkit to address systemic issues
  • Better understanding of regional western Cook County issues
  • View of critical issues through a community lens
  • Access to Leadership Library
  • Certificate of completion
  • Capstone Conference and Graduation Event

Program Details

  • Program runs September 2022 - June 2023
  • Meetings once a month on Fridays: 9am-12pm
  • Expected time commitment 8-10 hrs per month
  • Self-directed sessions offered throughout the month, including a mix of in-person and virtual workshops
  • Member activities including ”Member Exchanges," Book Club, Movie Night, Podcasts and more…

View the 2022-2023 Program Schedule

Tuition Information and Payments

Leadership Lab tuition is $2,000, of which $200 is tax-deductible. We encourage your employer’s sponsorship. For individuals seeking financial assistance, partial funding is available. Please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., for details. Refunds are not available once session has begun for any missed classes or cancellations.

Click here for ONLINE PAYMENTS

Or, mail checks to:
OPRF Community Foundation
1049 Lake Street, Suite 204
Oak Park, IL 60301
Memo: Leadership Lab Tuition

Credit cards are accepted over the phone.
Contact Cathy Craddock, Oak Park-River Forest Community Foundation: 708-848-1560

If you have questions about the program, email Jenny Yang: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

2021-2022 Cohort

We're proud of this diverse and talented group of community leaders taking part in this year's  program.

  • Marjorie Adam Clark, Owner & Director, Caring Mom’s Learning Daycare, Founding Member of Illinois Juneteenth Committee and Forest Park Juneteenth Committee Chair.
  • Lalema Bakate, Lead Coordinator Interim Housing, Housing Forward
  • Monnette Bariel, Volunteer Talent and Inclusion Manager, Beyond Hunger
  • Nina Bernacet, Programs Manager, Beyond Hunger
  • Isiah Brandon, Village of Maywood Trustee
  • Kathleen E. Brennan, Attorney, The Brennan Law Group, LLC, Village of River Forest Trustee
  • Audra Burrell, Owner/ Master Stylist A’ SalonBizz, Inc

  • Carey Carlock, Co-Founder/Executive Director of Mosaic Counseling and Wellness
  • Jean Erhardt, Director, Brand Strategy at Blue Cross Blue Shield Association & Owner, Elements Massage
  • Barbara Hickey, President of D90 Board of Education

  • Susan Johnson, Director of Student Activities, Oak Park and River Forest High School

  • Kara Kalnitz, Executive Director, Cluster Tutoring Program
  • Jodi Kolo, Director of Communications, Oak Park Public Library

  • Michelle Major, Global Feasibility Therapeutic Area Head, Janssen (Johnson & Johnson)
  • Maria Maxham, Village of Forest Park Commissioner / Author
  • Eric Mazelis, Economic Development Manager, Oak Park Economic Development Corporation
  • Sarah Moloney, Associate Director - Operations, Oak Park Regional Housing Center
  • Bertha Purnell, CEO Founder, Mothers on a Mission28
  • Veronica Richardson, Administrative Analyst II, Cook County Government

  • Stephen Robinson, Executive Director, The Northwest Austin Council
  • Wendy Senger, Communications Specialist, Oak Park Township
  • Keana Tucker, Project Manager, Rush University Medical Center
  • Michelle Wimberly, Assistant Director of Business Development, Riveredge Hospital & Streamwood Behavioral Healthcare System
  • Raheem Young, Co-Founder/Executive Director, Welcome to Fatherhood Inc. & Youth Interventionist, Oak Park Township

Share this page

Submit to FacebookSubmit to TwitterSubmit to LinkedIn