Accelerate Civic Leadership Digital Logo
Accelerate Civic Leadership Digital Icon






October 1, 2021


Virtual Leadership Experience

Accelerate Civic Leadership+ is designed to expand the number of individuals who accept leadership roles in business, government, and social organizations to meet future challenges in the region. Like all other community leadership development programs, Accelerate Civic Leadership+ strengthens the bonds within the region. It serves as a retention and engagement tool for our Niagara businesses and non-profits.

Leadership Development

Accelerate Civic Leadership+ is our answer to adapting our flagship Accelerate Civic Leadership (ACL) program for virtual learning. Our programming will be 100% virtual for 2021/22 as we work to protect the health and safety of our participants and community.

As a result, the program has been modified to maximize our participants’ engagement and knowledge mobilization for the realities of our new virtual learning world.

Program Outcomes

Our ACL+ programs encourage civic leadership and positive change within the Niagara region by developing the capabilities of aspiring leaders who care about the community. In other words, those who understand its strengths and weaknesses, and who are willing to make a personal investment to improve the community’s quality of life.

Gain Competencies & Skills In...


With now over 389+ alumni having gone through the Accelerate Civic Leadership+ program, we know graduates that emerge from this leadership journey with:

What's Changed?

This year, all elements of our leading self, leading others, leading community framework delivered 100% online through live Zoom sessions and self-directed learning.

Half-Day Sessions

Virtual Community Experience Project work with community partners/cases. Designed as half-day sessions with today’s professionals in mind and to mitigate Zoom fatigue.

What's The Same?

We continue to be Niagara’s best leadership experience. Building employee leadership presence in the workplace, while also creating community-minded leaders ready to tackle our communities’ greatest challenges. 

We are committed to bringing a experiential and skilled-based program that heavily includes community involvement, personal reflection and practical engagement.  

The exposure to a wide range of sectors, industries and backgrounds allows our participants to develop collaborative leadership skills while also developing a deep understanding of our community, its assets and the complexity of the challenges it faces. 

Meet Our


Caitlin Armstrong, Meridian Credit Union

Caitlin Armstrong
Meridian Credit Union

8+ Years HR Professional, Facilitator Leadership Development + Performance Management + Change Management

Lesley Calvin, Positive Forward Motion

Lesley Calvin
Positive Forward Motion

20+ years Trainer, Facilitator Executive Coaching + Energy Leadership + Organizational Effectiveness

Dr. Holly Catalfamo, Niagara College

Dr. Holly Catalfamo
Niagara College

20+ years Educator, Trainer, Facilitator, Author Leadership Development + Gender & Diversity +Organization Development, DDI

Ann Harrison, Retired Educational Leader

Ann Harrison
Retired Educational Leader

30+ years Educator, Facilitator System Leader + Curriculum Development Change Leader + Community Volunteer

Kevin McPhillips, Program Advisory Committee

Kevin McPhillips
McSweeney & Associates

+10 years Municipal + Provincial Governance, Economic Development + Research Experience

Patricia Regier, Regier Educational Services

Patricia Regier
Regier Educational Services

20+ years Trainer, Facilitator, eSpeaker Learning Experience Design + Online Production Partner + Multimedia Content Creator

Michelle Ross, Niagara Health

Michelle Ross
Niagara Health

5 years Trainer, Facilitator Organizational Development + Leadership Development + Curriculum Design and Delivery

Jeff Sinclair, Niagara Region

Jeff Sinclair
Niagara Region

10+ years Community Leadership Exp. Collective Impact + Community Engagement + Social Entrepreneurship + Global Development

Will Warren Program Advisory Committee Tech Facilitator

Will Warren
Engineering Management

10+ years Computer Systems Engineering in Cloud Comuting. Tech Facilitator.

Don't Miss Your Chance!

Funding Support

Government of Ontario

Canada Ontario Job Grant

This program is eligible for the Canada Ontario Job Grant (COJG). Employers seeking to ease program costs can apply.

The Canada-Ontario Job Grant provides direct financial support to individual employers or employer consortia who wish to purchase training for their employees. It is available to small, medium and large businesses with a plan to deliver short-term training to existing and new employees. Important to know:

  • Employers can get up to $10,000 in government support per person for training costs.
  • The training has to be delivered by an eligible, third-party trainer.
  • Employers with 100 or more employees need to contribute 1/2 of the training costs. Small employers with less than 100 employees need to contribute 1/6 of training costs.
  • For employer groups who want to apply for training supports the government offers a COJG Consortium Stream. The Consortium Stream allows a group of employers (two or more employers) to pool their resources to support common training objectives and goals. To apply as a consortium, the intermediary organization needs to ensure all the participating employers and trainees meet COJG requirements and are able to make their required contribution towards the training cost.
  • Most organizations acting as an intermediary are eligible for administrative funding equal to 15% of the government contribution.

If you’re an employer with a particular skills demand, the Canada-Ontario Job Grant might be right for you. Applications are accepted on an ongoing basis.

For more information and how to apply, visit the COJG Website

For further information, please contact the Employment Ontario Contact Centre. Call toll-free (no charge): 1-800-387-5656 or through the TTY number: 1-866-533-6339 or email at EmploymentHotlineInquiries@ontario.ca.

Niagara Community Foundation

Niagara Community Foundation Bursary

This bursary covers half the program fees of selected individuals working in the non-profit and charity sector.

The vision for the Education & Leadership Fund for Niagara is to support opportunities to build our leaders of tomorrow and to fund initiatives to strengthen the capacity of our voluntary sector to effectively deliver programs and services.

Learn More

To apply for this bursary, please indicate so on the application form under “Intention To Apply for Bursary Support.” 

Leadership niagara logo

Leadership Niagara Diversity Scholarship Application

This scholarship is part of our commitment to strengthening the inclusivity, equitable access and diverse representation of participants within our programs. This year’s program will provide one (1) or more full scholarships to the selected applicants for the ACL+ 2021/22 cohort.

The recipients of the LN Diversity Scholarship will be required to demonstrate their strong interest and/or commitment to civic engagement and community development. The recipients will also demonstrate significant promise that the ACL+ program will be a catalyst to make Niagara a better place.

The candidates:

  • Live and/or work in the Niagara Region

  • Are members of a historically underrepresented or marginalized group

  • Will have demonstrated interest and/or commitment to volunteerism in the community

  • Applying to be participants in the 2021 ACL+ leadership program

  • Will consent to the publication of their name and image by Leadership Niagara, if selected

To apply for this scholarship, please indicate so on the application form under “Intention To Apply for Bursary Support” AND complete the Scholarship Application Form.

Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce (GNCC) Women In Niagara (WIN) logo

Women In Niagara Leadership
Niagara Bursary

Women in Niagara is looking for an enthusiastic, self-starter who envisions themselves giving back to and being a leader for Niagara.

The Women in Niagara bursary is for a woman in business who lives and works in Niagara. 

This woman can be self-employed, work for a small business, a non-profit or for an employer that would otherwise not pay for leadership development training.

To apply for this scholarship, please indicate so on the application form under “Intention To Apply for Bursary Support”.


Program Schedule

Learning days will be bi-monthly half-day live zoom sessions from 9:00 AM- 1:00 PM

Exploring Leadership for Today’s Changing World

Opening Retreat
October 22, 2021

Opening Retreat
November 5, 2021

Creating Collaborative Partnerships

Learning Day 2a
November 19, 2021

Learning Day 2b
December 3, 2021

Navigating & Influencing Community Systems Transformation

Learning Day 3a
January 14, 2022

Learning Day 3b
January 28, 2022

Understanding and Supporting Not for Profits in Niagara

Learning Day 4a
February 11, 2022

Learning Day 4b
February 25, 2022

Mindfulness, Mindset, & the 7 levels of Leadership Energy

Learning Day 5a
March 25, 2022

Learning Day 5b
April 8, 2022

Exploring Topics in Equity, Diversity and Inclusivity in Niagara

Learning Day 6a
April 22, 2022

Learning Day 6b
May 6, 2022

Reflections on Leadership through Change

Learning Day 7a
May 27, 2022

Learning Day 7b
June 10, 2022


June 29,2022

Hear what others have to say


who should


Individuals who have demonstrated commitment to ongoing leadership development, show growing interest in community involvement and a willingness to make an investment of time to the Leadership Niagara program are invited to apply. No “invitation to apply” is required to initiate your application.

ACL+ is designed for a diverse collection of high performing mid-career professionals from all sectors including corporate, non-profit, government, education and entrepreneurs.

Ideal candidates are passionate, enterprising individuals who have a strong interest in the well-being of the region. Successful candidates for the program provide evidence of an independent, self-directed and mature learning style.

To be considered for the program, candidates must:

Program Information

Application Requirements

Application Deadline: Friday, October 1st 2021

Email your application with the following requirements to: info@leadershipniagara.ca

Have a question

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