Jackie Partlow defines a leader as “someone who’s open-minded about different ideas and will give you an opportunity to have your say, even if you don’t agree.” In rallying others behind an idea that many doubted, Partlow emerged as a leader herself.
Key to Partlow’s development was Purdue Extension and Leadership Carroll County (LCC). Purdue Extension is a vital partner in programs that help Indiana citizens create better places to live. And leadership programs such as LCC develop future leaders, ensuring an infusion of ideas, energy and activity into communities. Residents like Partlow who step up gain skills and connections, and their communities reap even greater benefits.
Partlow applies her skills and contacts not just to her catering business but also to a nonprofit organization she started in Flora, Ind., to help young women transition from incarceration into the community.
“I learned a lot,” Partlow says of the leadership development experience, and she values the ongoing support of her classmates: “The people I met through LCC have all been there for me. I never would have met them—now I see them all the time, and they’re always willing to help.”