Virginia Natural Resource Leadership Institute to Kick Off 10th Year; New Class Members Sought

May 5, 2009 — A program to help Virginia's leaders address difficult environmental and community issues will kick off its 10th year this fall. 

The Virginia Natural Resources Leadership Institute is a unique program consisting of six three-day leadership training sessions at a variety of locations across the Commonwealth. Fellows explore a host of complex environmental issues and gain practical skills in collaborative problem-solving. Participants accepted into the program will attend all six workshops, which generally run from Wednesdays through Fridays.

An award-winning program, the institute was recognized by the 2009 Virginia General Assembly for its outstanding efforts to improve the way environmental decisions are made in Virginia.

The institute's administrators encourage applicants from business and industry; state, local and federal government; American Indian tribes; environmental and civic organizations; African-American and Latino communities, and individuals who are involved in some capacity with natural resource issues and are catalysts in their communities.

The deadline for applying is May 29. Brochures, applications and information packets are available online.

The program fee is $2,300. Scholarships are available. Those interested in attending are encouraged to apply even if they're not sure they can afford the entire registration fee.

For information, contact Christine Gyovai at 434-982-6464 or

The institute is a partnership with the University of Virginia's Institute for Environmental Negotiation, Virginia Cooperative Extension, Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation, and the Virginia Department of Forestry.

The leadership program is supported in part by the U.S. Forest Service's Urban and Community Forestry Grant Program, the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, and grants from the Dominion Foundation, the Chesapeake Bay License Plate Fund, and George Beals Leadership Fund of the Virginia Soil and Water Conservation Districts.