Opportunities for leadership, advocacy, and public policy often come from very unexpected sources as it did for this presenter. Believing she was on a positive trajectory in life and career success, a personal tragedy derailed that plan and sent Linda Thompson on a journey of spiritual, learning, and personal growth that has helped her make a positive impact on thousands. Her story from Girl Scout to Elected Official will inspire others to look to their opportunities for servant leadership and community engagement. It's time to be bold in words and actions.
I cannot remember a time, even as a young girl, that I wasn't drawn to leadership through school, scouting, or sandlot baseball. Growing up in a wonderful family and neighborhood environment, I always believed I would make a difference in the world. There was no doubt I was meant for success in school, relationships, and career. I dreamed of running a business or trying my hand at entrepreneurship. I was just sure I was going to lead an innovative company or invent something incredible. When my career in the financial industry coupled with community outreach representing my employer with service organizations took off on a positive trajectory, I was sure I had found my niche. But an unimaginable tragedy made me gather every bit of strength and fortitude from deep inside me ! to survive a heart wrenching loss. I truly grew from the depths of despair into a grassroots advocate with a dedication to my lifework to save lives through public policy, legislative advocacy, and community engagement. The purpose of this interactive presentation will be to inspire others to see what greatness they have inside of them--and that they do not have to wait for a devastating disaster to strike for them to share their gifts with others. Servant leadership dwells in each of us -- we just have see the opportunities to utilize the lessons, skills, and partnerships for the greater good. Participants will learn ways they can integrate public policy work in their own lives and help make our communities a safer and more kind place for all of us to live together as we take a moment to not judge but share compassion with our fellow human beings. This is a story of being bold in word and deed.