ELI is a year-long leadership development program designed to build the capacity of future leaders within New York’s Community Action Network. This collaborative learning experience incorporates:

  • Formal training to build skills and knowledge
  • Peer networking opportunities to build local and statewide relationships
  • Book talk(s) with books chosen by the group

Participants will explore their leadership styles, develop leadership aptitude and empower themselves and others. By equipping Emerging Leaders with these critical skills, NYSCAA is ensuring that Community Action Agencies are able to continue the important work of helping people, changing lives – our mission that impacts hundreds of thousands of low and moderate-income New Yorkers every year.

Click here for the ELI brochure.


  • “This program provided me with the opportunity to meet my peers across the state. It allowed me to both share my expertise and gain new knowledge from colleagues and presenters. Through my participation in the ELI program, I was given the opportunity to become a NYSCAA Board member and a National Certified ROMA Trainer. I now have a network of ‘friends‛ across the state and country that I can rely on and bounce ideas and situations off of. It was a very valuable experience!!”  – Laura Rossman, CEO, ProAction of Steuben and Yates, Inc. ELI Alumn
  • "I am in a supervisor position and am using the wealth of knowledge I learned in ELI and applying it to my day to day work. I highly recommend ELI to anyone who is looking to expand on their resume, meet new people, and learn invaluable information from some of the best mentors and leaders there are." - Karissa Matott, Joint Council for Economic Opportunity (JCEO)
  • The information I have gained from the Seminars has truly made me a better Manager and I would love more.” – from survey, unknown
  • I have found the trainings to be very informative, invigorating and affirming.” – from survey, unknown
  • “We have several staff participate in the Emerging Leaders program and they loved it! They are energized and very involved in all aspects of the agency. They get it! ELI has created new leaders for our agency contributing positively to our succession planning. Great opportunity that we will continue to participate in.” – Amy Turner, MVCAA, Executive Director
  • “ELI was introduced to me by a former ELI member from my agency as a leadership learning opportunity that I was recommended for.  I was honestly not sure what to expect but I applied in hopes for an opportunity to better myself and be able to offer more to my agency.  Although I am not in a leadership title, I have gained the knowledge and tools to become an effective leader and strive to advance.  I have not only taken valuable information away from the presenters that we have had, but being a part of a group like ELI has allowed me to network with many others from around New York State.  Self-confidence in my work and learning the importance of communication and listening among a team are the key things that I have personally taken from ELI.  More recently I have been given greater responsibilities at work and feel able to succeed in them because of those skills.” –  Cara Johnson, ProAction of Steuben and Yates, ELI Alumn
  • “The Emerging Leader Program was incredibly valuable to me for the connections I made. I learned so much from my peers across the state and from NYSCAA staff along the way. Three years later, I still trust colleagues to provide feedback, ideas, support and connections to other people.” – Nathan Varland, Community Action of Orleans & Genesee, ELI Alumn
  • “I can’t tell you how much I enjoyed ELI.  Definitely the best training I have ever been to.”   – Katie Palmer, Schoharie County Community Action
  ELI Resources
ELI Alumni
seminars & course req.s

 Want to learn more about ELI? Please contact Courtney Schanthal at [email protected]