8-Day Regional Leadership Development Program 2024

The 8-Day Program will be open to people who reside in the Murraylands and Riverland region and are ready to broaden their leadership skills.

We will focus on inside-out leadership development, building self-awareness before we seek to lead others and lead change.

Apply for the Program Now!

We are excited to announce applications are open now!

We invite you to complete your applications for our 8-Day Leadership Program by either scanning the QR code or clicking the link below.

Applications will be open for 4 weeks. The program will commence on Wednesday 3rd July 2024 with limited places available.

About the Program

The innovative leadership program is built on the belief that leadership is about action, not titles or ranks. It’s about stepping up for your community and making a real impact by collaborating with others on shared, meaningful goals.

We understand that true leadership is a collective effort, not about individual heroes. It’s about adapting to the unique challenges and opportunities in your environment.

The program culminates in a vibrant regional leadership activation event, which brings participants together with alumni from ARLF Changemaker and the 2023 Regional Leadership Development Program. Explore leadership needs and opportunities in this region, to spark collective leadership action and generate positive change.

While personal growth is integral, our primary goal is to empower leaders to mobilise and inspire others to foster impactful, collective leadership for the greater good of the region.

Join us and be a part of a movement that champions collaboration and regional change!

See what some of our previous participants have to say

How does it work?

The 8-Day Program will be delivered across 8 individual workshops over 5 months. Daily sessions commence at 9am and conclude at 4:30pm.

The program will consist of:

Session 1 & 2 (2-day opening retreat)

Welcome and Induction (compulsory for all participants)
Tuesday 23rd & Wednesday 24th July – Berri Hotel

Session 3 (1-day)

Tuesday 20th August – Karoonda Institute Hall

Session 4 (1-day)

Tuesday 10th September – Bowhill Community Centre

Session 5 (1-day)

Tuesday 15th October – Bamera Club

Session 6 (1-day)

Tuesday 5th November – Murray Bridge Community Hall

Session 7 & 8 (2-day Overnight)

Tuesday 3rd & 4th December – Loxton Hotel

*Dates may be subject to change

Expected Outcomes

Identify and develop a deep understanding of individual strengths and values

Create brave spaces that embrace diversity, inclusion and belonging

Explore the power of reframing a problem as potential

Build self-awareness as the foundation for leading other and driving change

Empower leaders to mobilise and inspire others, fostering impactful, collective leadership

Unlock potential in the region through collective leadership action

  • Are over 18 years of age
  • Live, work or are otherwise part of a community within one of the eight Murraylands and Riverland local government areas
  • Can commit the time to complete the 8-Day Program
  • Show a genuine interest and involvement in their community

90% of program costs are being funded by PIRSA, reducing your individual participant contribution to $590 excluding GST.

This fee includes:

  • Highly experienced facilitators who are experts in leadership development
  • Interactive and experimental workshop sessions inclusive of morning tea, lunch and afternoon tea
  • Program materials including handouts and activities to support learning
  • Two nights’ accommodation (opening retreat and graduation event)
Your Commitment
  • Session 1 & 2 (2-day overnight) is compulsive for all participants to attend.
  • 75% attendance for the 8-days.
  • The time and travel requirements of the program including workshop sessions.
  • Participating as an active learner and group member.

Meet the 2024 Facilitators!

Aurora Meliora and LeadersHP will lead the design and facilitation of the program, and maintain responsibility for overall program design, integration, and cohort support. The Australian Rural Leadership Foundation will oversee the delivery of both Change maker programs (in collaboration with ARLF Associate, Tanya Lehmann).

All three Delivery Partners will co-design and facilitate the final day.

Aurora Meliora Logo
LeadersHP Logo
Australian Rural Leadership Foundation Logo
Tanya Lehmann – Aurora Meliora

Aurora Meliora specialises in discovering the human potential in purpose-driven organisations, developing leaders and generating resilient communities. By nurturing leaders and ideas, Aurora Meliora supports humans in navigating through complex change and strengthens the alignment of purpose, strategy, culture, behaviour and performance metrics. Once described as having enough energy to power a small town, Tanya is passionate about discovering and developing the human potential in organisations and regional communities.

Tanya is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors (AICD) course and has 10 years of experience as a Board Chair. She is an Associate and Fellow of the Australian Rural Leadership Foundation (graduate ARLP Course 21), actively contributing to the design and facilitation of a number of programs including the Drought Resilience Leaders Program, Changemaker Programs, and Australian Rural Leadership Program. Tanya has been a member of the South Australian Heath Performance Council since 2021, and Locton Chamber or Commerce Executive since 2023.

When it’s time to recharge, Tanya can be found outdoors enjoying the beautiful Muray River with her husband, two teenagers, energetic kelpies and good friends, or curled up with a good book in their rammed earth home in the Riverland. You might also find her with a paintbrush, wooden spoon or power tool in hand, indulging her love for making art, yummy food and other creative messes.

Matt Cesaro – LeadersHP

Matt is a passionate coach and facilitator, working with individuals and groups of leaders in organisations and communities to increase their awareness impact and performance. He supports leaders to engage their teams and communities in conversations that matter, to get aligned on purpose and vision to see what’s getting in their way and to find opportunities to step into new ways of leading, working and being.

His operational and leadership experience developed with over 20 years working in SA Health and Country Health SA. Working both centrally and in regional teams, he successfully led many change and reform programs in OrganisationalDevelopment, Health Service Operations, Finance, Information Technology, Business Systems and Project Management. Having worked extensively across regional South Australia and lived on theEyre Peninsula, Riverland, Clare Valley and BarossaValley, Matt is deeply connected to and passionate about the development of regional leaders and communities.

Susannah Dodd – LeadersHP

Susannah is passionate about encouraging leaders to dial up empathy and bring more heart and compassion to develop cultures and teams that are high in trust and performance. She loves supporting others to live and lead with authenticity.

Susannah’s spent over 25 years developing her operational and leadership experience in the SAHealth system. Working centrally and in several Local Health Networks, Susannah has shaped reform within large complex systems and led numerous teams through change. With a background in training, client engagement, information technology and management, she pays close attention to the needs of stakeholders using her keen ability to listen deeply and draw out multiple perspectives. She is highly skilled at bringing simplicity to complexity and communicating with others in a meaningful way.

She has a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and Psychology, and a Graduate Diploma in Information Studies with further studies in Foundations in Transformational Leadership. Susannah is a certified Leadership Coach and is a certified practitioner of The Leadership Circle (TLC). Having grown up in the Riverland, when Susannah isn’t doing the work she loves, you’ll often find her with her family and friends camping and replacing along the Murray River.

Andrew Bryant – The Australian Rural Leadership Foundation (ARLF)

The Australian Rural Leadership Foundation (ARLF) is a not-for-profit and the only leadership development organisation that has a national footprint with a focus in rural, regional and remote Australia.

The ARLF recently celebrated three decades of leadership impact in rural, regional and remote Australia. Over 2000 leaders have been through our leadership programs and their contribution continues to positively impact organisations, sectors and communities.

Andrew has a Bachelor’s degree in Social Science (Counselling and Human Behaviour) and a Master’s degree in Leadership. He is also a Fellow of the ARLF, graduating from the ARLPCourse 28). Outside of his work with the Foundation, Andrew is an accredited ASIST trainer and spends some of his time delivering suicide prevention first aid training around regional and rural Queensland. In the rest of his spare time, you’ll find Andrew enjoying a combination of water and sunshine, working out in the gym, running, or off with his wife Joni, searching locally or further afield for beautiful views and delicious food.

As Manager Learning with the Australian Rural Leadership Foundation, Andrew Bryant has led the design and delivery of the Changemaker Program, under the Federal Government’s Helping Regional Communities Prepare for Drought Initiative (HRCPDI). This program is being delivered in over 30 regions, across all states and territories of Australia.

Topics we will cover

Leading Self (Self-Awareness):
  • Developing self-awareness of personal preferences and the importance of feedback and personal disclosure
  • Identifying individual strengths and values
  • Exploring the role of cognitive bias, unconscious beliefs and perspectives in the way we navigate the world and show up as leaders
  • Exploring the power of networking and learning from others
  • Creating brave spaces that embrace diversity, inclusion and belonging

Leading Self (Personal Resilience):
  • Exploring human needs theory and how these shape our feelings, thoughts behaviours
  • Building emotional literacy and understanding emotions
  • Understanding stress and its impact on our performance
  • Recognising the impact of trauma on our window tolerance to stress and change
  • Deepening self-awareness of creative and reactive tendencies
  • Exploring the science of habits and how to make behaviour change stick
Leading Others (Hearts and Minds):
  • Reflecting on personal behaviour change progress and our own immunity to change
  • Developing deep listening with curiosity, compassion and courage (head, heart and hands)
  • Harnessing the power of complaints to reveal commitments to change
  • Connecting with others through [purpose and the art and science of storytelling
  • Recognising the intention and reality gap and how to build trust
  • Leading courageous conversations and providing feedback
Leading Others (Influencing Behaviour):
  • Understanding the difference between technical and adaptive challenges
  • Applying the Integral Framework to coordinate multiple stakeholder perspectives
  • Utilising concepts to work out who influences and how.
  • Understanding the drama triangle in group dynamics (and on committees!)
  • Developing your capacity to be a Coach
Leading Change (Being a Changemaker):
  • Considering the difference between leadership and authority
  • Orienting for change by considering how history has shaped our region
  • Applying adaptive leadership and systems thinking to adaptive challenges in our region
  • Exploring the power of reforming the problem as a potential
  • Applying human-centered design and action learning to generate innovation probes
Leading Change (Collective Action):
  • Exploring what we can learn from local change makers
  • Considering how changemaker archetypes can support effective collective leadership
  • Exploring the power of vulnerability in asking for what you need and offering what you can
  • Understanding change leadership and how to bring people along
  • Preparing for the graduation event


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