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The Denver Leadership Initiative is a 12 month leadership development program that is grounded in the belief that by investing in leaders within the community, those who have already demonstrated leadership abilities, our city and its people will benefit. The Initiative aims to increase the capacity of your ministry as it breaks through to a new level of service to the community. This Initiative is not intended to help you improve the mechanics of your ministry. Rather, it is designed to enable you to build a foundation for your ministry and personal life, and to develop a plan that will carry you into the future. To accomplish this we have developed a 4 aspect approach.

Some people dream of being a healthy & successful leader. We make it happen.

Leading for Life


Leading For Life (L4L) is a unique learning experience designed specifically for the urban ministry workers, whether paid or volunteer, and is delivered in a 2-day format. Every seasoned leader will tell you that personal growth is an essential requirement for ministry effectiveness and longevity. The primary aims of the training are: 1) To increase your awareness of your unique capabilities and challenges, both personal and ministry-related, 2) To expand your capacity for effective and sustained ministry, 3) To provide you with new tools in areas such as self-assessment, communication, priority-setting and personal change, and 4) To deepen your confidence and fulfillment in ministry and life. The content for this has been developed by the DeVos Urban Leadership Initiative and is taught by certified L4L instructors who are established and experienced leaders at the top of their fields.

Core Values Training


The participants in these groups will focus on the five core values of balance, accountability, interdependence, empowerment and leverage.


During each month of Core Values Trainings, the participants will attend a 3-hour workshop. Although the participants will meet all together, we will have built in time and opportunities within the meeting for the participants to meet separately with their Shepherding and Learning Community (SLC) group for further learning and dialog. Local leaders and DLI alumni will serve as the SLG group leaders for these groups.


During the Core Values Trainings, each participant will write a “Breakthrough Plan” that will outline how they will implement what they have learned to achieve significant and sustainable change in their personal and ministry lives.

Shepherding & Learning Communities


Each participant will also be a part of a smaller community, called an SLC Group (Shepherding & Learning Community Group) of 3 to 4 people that will connect once a month (typically an hour or so) via video conference or personal meeting as otherwise planned by the group. The purpose of the SLC groups is to offer leaders a safe place where they can continue to grow, heal and be held accountable to their Breakthrough Plan. It is also intended to create a pool of leaders that learn together and develop strong relationships, which will strengthen networks and lead to effective leveraging of community resources. It allows the participants an opportunity to develop the momentum and influence needed to sustain more leadership growth opportunities. It is our goal that they will continue to develop and support other emerging leaders from the community in subsequent years of DLI.

Healthy Leaders Conference


This is a one-day training event that will be conducted in Denver, to enhance the education and training of ministry leaders and volunteers in Denver and the surrounding areas.


This conference is a one-day training experience designed for both emerging and veteran leaders. We will gather existing leaders, student leaders, volunteers, bi-vocational workers, those already in the trenches, as well as part-time and full-time paid urban leaders. The training engages philosophy of ministry, core skills and competencies for effective ministry, inner life and character formation, as well as community transformation principles for citywide impact.


The current Denver Leadership participants, along with the local champion organizations, project staff and DLI alumni will host and coordinate this one-day training event.


“My life has been truly changed! I felt like quiting but now, I have found the tools, strategies and relationships to have the impact I've always wanted with out burning out!”

Dez Gonzales

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