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Leadership Novato History Novato Exposed

About Leadership Novato | established in 1990

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Founded in History

Novato was established as a community much earlier than the City. Before the City's official creation, there was a Chamber, Fire Water sanitary and school district.

City Hall In Novato Old and White

Chaos in Dedication

With so many governing bodies and mission, it was difficult to get things accomplished in a cohesive way. Often times, what made sense to one district, severely hindered another. It was clear that something need to be done because leaders were making decisions that were having unforseen consequences in the community.

City Hall In Novato Old and White

Why is it a Chamber Program?

Leadership Institutes are not unique to Novato, but Novato's is part of a select few that are organized by the local chambers of commerce. Chambers are political beings, they are community focused, unlike other districts and municpal agencies which are task-ortiented; this gives Chambers a unique ability to bring several political organizations together for the common goal of education.

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High Level of Involvement

With the founding of Novato in 1960 and the ongoing jurisdictions of the districts there were plenty of ways for residents to become involved in the decision-making of the community. Whether that meant serving on boards, commissions or in political organizations.

City Hall In Novato Old and White

High Level of Involvement

In 1990, a man by the name of Ed Stark observed the problem and founded the Leadership Novato Program. The goal of the program is to identify and empower future leaders with the skills and knowledge primarily to affect the future of Novato.

City Hall In Novato Old and White

Why is it so costly? Nearly $1200?

As of 2019 NO FUNDING IS PROVIDED TO THE CHAMBER TO CONDUCT THIS LEADERSHIP INSTITUTE. The program makes less than 5 -7% of its annual cost back as revenue--those funds are returned to the scholarship fund. Student tuition and sponsorships cover the $20,000 annual budget to put on Leadership Novato. Students receive tours, learning materials, two meals each day and a whole array of support from staff in order to complete LN.

Shaping Tomorrow Starts Here!

Leadership Novato Police Molly Folly YMCA Partner Leadership

Explore Novato. We look at schools, fire houses, trails, hospitals, commerce districts, water plants, power plants, natural plants...and meet all the interesting people along the way.

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Hands ON

Nothing beats experience. Get hands-on leadership experience with this comprehensive program that explores the unique jobs and roles that go into running our community. 


Leadership Novato Advisory Committee

The LNAC is a committee comprised of dedicated individuals who are determined to see the Leadership Novato Program and Curriculum succeed.

the LNAC

Leadership Novato Applications

Be part of a legacy that spans over 30 years. Leadership Novato gives comprehensive tools and real-experience to students looking to become effective leaders in their community.



LN 2022 Student Application 

Request a Service Project

Leadership Sponsor Forms

Leadership Novato Partners Representatives: 

Bill Tyler, LN’09 Chief
Novato Fire Protection District

Drew McIntyre, LN’02 General Manager
North Marin Water District

Kris Cosca  Superintendent
Novato Unified School District

Sandeep Karkal, LN’07 General Manager | Chief Engineer
Novato Sanitary District

Adam McGill City Manager:
City of Novato

Leadership Novato Advisory Committee 

Chair: Kim Stahley Director of Leadership Novato 
Sylvia Barry, LN’12,
Clark Blasdell, LN’93
Michelle Cortez, LN'21
Molly Foley, LN'17
Jeremy Hogan, LN’20
Pam Hassely, LN’03
Kristin Lee Swenson, LN'21
Tamara Ressler, LN'15
Coy Smith, Chamber CEO


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Do You Have Questions? Contact the Novato Chamber Team!

If you have any questions about this page, the Leadership Novato program, curriculum applications, team projects, or the LN Advisory Committee, please reach out to Kim Stahley, the Director of Leadership Novato.