Leadership Bend

Leadership Bend is a community leadership development program designed to identify, educate, train and connect willing and committed citizens to leadership roles in our community.  Now in our 25th year, we are a separate 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization, a program of the Bend Chamber, and fully supported from community resources.  There are over 400 Leadership Bend alumni who have gone on to serve as our “community trustees.”

Leadership Bend 25th Anniversary & Community-wide Celebration



Leadership Bend Alumni celebrated a fun and successful kick-off to their 25 years with Mayor Casey Roats and the fine folks at the City of Bend.  The Class of 2018 also joined in the morning gathering on November 16th.  Catch some of the energy in this FB Live post: 

Leadership Bend Alumni !! Celebrating 25 years !  Posted by Jamie Christman on Thursday, November 16, 2017    

Many thanks to our Hosts:

City of Bend, Oregon Government and

Compass Commercial Real Estate Services, Inc.


Thursday, January 18 at 5:00 p.m. for Happy Hour with….(stay tuned for the big reveal!)



Alumni VIP Survey – have you taken it, yet?

As our “community trustees” and stewards, you’re kind of a big deal!  

We hope you’ll take a few minutes to complete the survey. Results thus far:


Title Investor

A message from Jamie Christman, Executive Director of Leadership Bend: 

jamie“It’s going to be another great year ahead and we would love to have you join us! This year’s course will include, among other things, lunch forums at the City Club of Central Oregon, an opportunity to attend the Economic Forecast Breakfast and a select number of “What’s Brewing community forums” and more.”  For more detailed information about the program and the application process, scroll to the bottom of this page.

For information on investment in sponsorship opportunities, contact Jamie Christman:  541.382.3221 

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“Leadership Bend is all about exploring one’s potential as a community leader and discovering the rich terrain of Central Oregon’s civic, nonprofit and corporate landscape. By nature, those who participate in programs like Leadership Bend are do-gooders. They want to participate in the ongoing work of evaluating and improving the quality of life in Central Oregon.” – Judy Shasek, It’s YOUR Wave – Ride It!


WHO participates in Leadership Bend?

The program brings together community minded individuals ready to assume leadership roles and businesses who believe a healthy community comes from an investment in leadership. Participants are identified from a broad cross section of the community, drawing from acknowledged and aspiring leaders who represent diversity and share a common commitment to action and a bright future.  Leadership Bend alumni include a variety of prominent business owners, CEOs, city managers, superintendents, executive directors, elected officials, industry leaders and professionals.

WHAT is Leadership Bend?

Leadership Bend is an annual nine-month program investing in leadership and community awareness and is a program of the Bend Chamber. During nine full-day sessions, scheduled once a month, participants work together with local leaders to expand awareness and understanding of unique issues and opportunities facing the Bend community as well as the Central Oregon region. Participants are challenged to explore current issues first-hand, will benefit from a series of leadership topics designed to enhance individual leadership skills and be expected to make an impact through the highly identified class project.

WHY Invest in Leadership Bend?

No matter how much technology you have, people are your company’s greatest asset. Leadership Bend keeps leaders plugged in to become part of the solution to issues and needs. When you invest in leadership development, you build your major resource, your people. It is our belief that everything begins with leadership. As a growing and very special region in Oregon, the issues become increasingly more complex and the need for leadership is greater than ever. After all, who will “pass the torch” and continue to build upon what was already created by our pillars before us? Leadership Bend educates committed leaders on the issues and resources in the community, allowing one to become part of solutions as a more informed and engaged citizen. When you invest in Leadership Bend, you invest in the community and our future. After the nine-month program is complete, Leadership Bend alumni become community trustees. With over 360 alumni, they know change and opportunity happens through action and the list of accomplishments of Leadership Bend alumni is long. Why not make a difference in your community today and invest in yourself through Leadership Bend?


SAMPLE of the Class of 2017 experience:

Leadership Bend Class of 2017 Program Schedule & Session Objectives

ORIENTATION:  Monday, September 12, 2016.  Attendance is required at Orientation.* Location: Bend Golf and Country Club, 5:00 – 7:30 p.m.

Leadership Bend will meet every 3rd Thursday of the month beginning September 15, 2016 from 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and cover the following leadership development topics and objectives:

Leadership Development & Team Building

  • Realize individual personality styles, how they affect interaction with others plus develop skills in group/team dynamics and apply them in an interactive format with Sheila Mawdsley, Executive Coach
  • Develop a variety of leadership skills and discover your own leadership value and why it is important

Our Community

  • Develop greater appreciation & understanding of the historical issues & events that shaped Central Oregon
  • Gain unique insight and perspective on the composition of Bend and Central Oregon
  • Learn how our local bonds, districts, levies and campaigns have impacted us and the value of your role
  • Understand Oregon’s property tax and land use system

Economy, Tourism & the Central Oregon Business Climate

  • Understand the current Central Oregon business climate, the role of tourism, our health industry, and more
  • Understand local efforts to expand and retain local businesses; how key partners work together


  • Examine leadership in a government setting and operational differences between county and city
  • Discuss major issues and opportunities facing local government; meet elected and key stakeholders

Judicial, Legal & Public Service

  • Increase awareness of the local court system, community justice, and community protection services
  • Gain an understanding of our public servants serving Central Oregon and your role

Boards, Nonprofits and Human Resources

  • Learn how a board truly works and become prepared to identify strengths and weaknesses
  • Learn from key organizations why they exist and how they impact the community

Education, Technology and Emerging Industries

  • Gain an awareness of the challenges facing youth and growth in our community
  • Understand the fundamental education components and what’s next on the horizon in our community

Land & Natural Resources

  • Increase understanding of state, county and city land and water practices
  • Learn how these laws impact our natural resources and quality of life

Communications & Media

  • Enhancing communication skills, understanding our media and the process of effective communication

Class Project: Leadership Bend Impact Summit, the class project for Leadership Bend was held on May 11, 2017 –  (The Class Project will require time outside of class).  Read more about it on the “class project” website:

Graduation:  June 2017, date TBD. Location: Deschutes Brewery Mtn. Room, 5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.

Pacific Power Graduation Investor

*Orientation includes the “Leadership Bend Alumni Social and Orientation Mixer”.  Class of 2017 participants are required to attend Orientation. LB alumni, sponsors, partners, board members and key elected officials will also be in attendance.  Plan to have your head shot photo taken upon arrival. Please note this in advance.  


For information on investment opportunities to sponsor a session of Leadership Bend,

contact Jamie Christman, Executive Director

 (541) 382-3221 or


Leadership. Vision. Involvement. Community

The Leadership Bend program will help to transform your current vision of the community while making close connections with local leaders and your fellow classmates. During this nine-month program, learn the issues, opportunities and “hot-topics” in Central Oregon and why providing valuable leadership to the region is important.

In addition to the monthly day-long sessions, you will connect with area movers and shakers at the City Club of Central Oregon monthly lunch forums as part of the regular curriculum.  Plus, experience the fun and ease of The Bend Trolley as you take a break and connect with fellow classmates.  Together, we will commute to the lunch forums while keeping our parking footprint to a minimum at the Riverhouse Convention Center.

New this year! Get a jump start on the planning and development of your legacy class project, the Leadership Bend Impact Summit 2017 (; LBIS).  Make a difference in the region through your passion, contribution, and commitment to this project.  “The Leadership Bend Impact Summit seeks to support the small-medium sized nonprofit and community organizations with a focus on increasing capacity, building more durable institutions, and to better positioning these organizations in the competitive field of fundraising.”  LBIS 2016 held strategic business planning workshops for 10 qualifying nonprofits which culminated in a sponsored community event where five selected organizations competed for a cash prize of $10,000!   Plus, the Audience Choice Award recipient received $1,500 and the event raised funds for Leadership Bend scholarships.  You will also have mentorship from the LBIS Advisory Board, comprised of alumni from the Leadership Bend Class of 2015 and 2016 alumni. What will your year with the project look like?  Get excited now.

As a Leadership Bend class participant, you may attend the foremost program on the region’s economic standing, the Economic Forecast Breakfast 2016, Thursday, October 1st at a reduced rate and receive extra-credit.  Class members are be required to attend a select number of What’s Brewing community forums and Pints Power Panel series (see the Commitment Form on page 9).  Additional opportunities for extra-credit will also be provided throughout the year. And, keep in mind, like all who learn to live and serve in this remarkable community through volunteer work, you will need to set aside time outside of class sessions for assignments, the class project and extra credit in order to have successful completion of this program.

From exciting privileges like attending the unConference 2016 (hosted by Tech Alliance of Central Oregon, held during the Bend Venture Conference) to personal and group executive coaching, you will find yourself immersed in what makes Bend and Central Oregon so special and worth your leadership. Further, upon graduation, you become a member of the region’s elite leaders, the Leadership Bend Alumni Association.  Find a Leadership Bend alumni and ask about the experience! More information will be provided at Orientation.

For additional information contact Jamie Christman at (541) 382-3221 or



Leadership Bend Impact Summit

Stay Tuned For the Call For Applications for the 2018 Leadership Bend Impact Summit!


For more info, go to 

The Leadership Bend Impact Summit is the “class project” taken on by each new cohort of the Leadership Bend program.

The Leadership Bend Impact Summit is designed to bring community-minded people together to acknowledge the significant role small to medium size nonprofit organizations play in contributing to the resilience of Central Oregon. All non-profit organizations who meet the inclusive criteria are encouraged to apply. Applications can be downloaded and emailed directly to

Criteria includes, but is not limited to:

  • Be a 501(c)(3) organization
  • Be registered and in good standing with the Oregon Department of Justice and Oregon Secretary of State
  • Have an annual budget that does not exceed $750,000
  • Operate from, and primarily serve, Central Oregon (defined as Crook, Deschutes and/or Jefferson Counties)

After a rigorous selection process, LBIS finalists will participate in a series of strategic business planning workshops. These workshops, facilitated by local non-profit and business leaders, will focus on several key areas including business planning, board management, marketing, fundraising, and “Pitch” coaching.

At the conclusion of these workshops, LBIS will host a community event at which workshop finalists will publicly pitch their strategic business plan concept.  The event, called Pitch for a Purpose, is an opportunity to increase a non-profit organization’s exposure, and compete for a cash prize intended to enhance the organization’s capacity to execute its strategic business plan. To date, with the help of generous sponsors, the LBIS has awarded $38,500 to local non-profit organizations such as Healing Reins Therapeutic Riding Center (2015), and La Pine Community Kitchen (2016) and Healthy Beginnings (2017).

The Leadership Bend Impact Summit was launched in 2015 by Leadership Bend, a prestigious nine-month program facilitated by the Bend Chamber designed to identify, educate, train and connect willing and committed citizens to leadership.



Application packets are available here for the class of 2018!

Download the PDF to your hard drive and open it in Acrobat so you can complete and sign the application electronically.

With only 25 seats available, the process to qualify is competitive. All applications are expected to be complete, correct and returned by the deadline stated within the application in order to receive consideration by the Leadership Bend Selection Committee.

The application process is open to both Chamber members and non-members.


Chamber member: $1050 for the 2017-2018 program year (Sept. 2017 thru May 2018, plus a June graduation).

Non-member: $1,405, which includes a one-year Bend Chamber membership.

Read the entire packet carefully and follow all instructions. Plan to spend time applying, garnering appropriate letters of recommendation and making sure you can commit to each of the 9 month sessions, orientation, credit requirements, the class project (Leadership Bend Impact Summit) and, essentially, your fellow colleagues.

The Bend Chamber is actively supported by these Lead Investors


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