Leadership Odessa, a program sponsored by the Odessa Chamber of Commerce, was founded in 1978. The program’s main purpose is to educate, motivate, and coordinate the future leadership of the community. The program helps to provide an orderly transfer of leadership for the community without losing continuity or momentum. Participation in the program carries with it a commitment to build on the foundation provided by past leaders and develop the quality of life in Odessa to its fullest potential. Leadership Odessa creates an awareness of community needs, while enhancing existing leadership skills.
Participants in Leadership Odessa are exposed to informative sessions covering many aspects of the community including Odessa’s history, government and public safety issues, social services, the media, education, medical services, business and industry, and cultural opportunities. These full-day monthly sessions create an awareness of Odessa’s resources and put the class in contact with local experts in their particular area of expertise. The participants also have an opportunity to visit some of the key facilities in Odessa and Ector County.
The Leadership Odessa program is open to anyone who currently lives or works in Odessa. It is professionally rewarding and a must for newcomers. A two-day kick-off retreat begins the program during which participants have the opportunity to go through the team-building ROPES Course, which utilizes problem-solving adventure experiences to enhance learning, develop trust, promote teamwork, improve self-esteem and reduce stress. The ROPES Course will acquaint the participants with each other and create bonds and friendships that will last a lifetime.
In order to graduate, participants must attend seven of the nine sessions. Also, to provide for continuity in the Leadership Odessa program, the current class is charged with the responsibility of planning sessions for the following year’s class. Chairmen, session chairs and their committees will plan the entire program from beginning to end.
Participants in Leadership Odessa also are involved in implementing a similar program for high school juniors called Junior Leadership Odessa. In addition, upon graduation from the program, Leadership Odessa participants are eligible for membership in the Leadership Odessa Alumni Association.
To enroll in Leadership Odessa, simply fill out the enrollment form that you can download here: Leadership enrollment form