The future of the islands will be decided in the islands.

LEADERSHIP SAN JUAN ISLANDS is a countywide program to educate and motivate community members interested in developing their professional skills and in learning more about issues affecting San Juan County.  LSJI is a joint project of Skagit Valley College, San Juan County Economic Development Council and the United Way of San Juan County.

WHY:  Community leadership programs are a means by which local communities take the initiative in developing a trained network of people engaged in community work. These programs train future politicians, business leaders, agency heads, educators, board members, and volunteers.

This successful program in San Juan County:

  • Identifies interested participants on all the populated islands;
  • Educates the participants about the larger systems within which our community operates;
  • Offers participants a program to develop professional skills in, for example, speaking, writing, and conflict resolution;
  • Creates a network of diverse community participants across geographic, social and cultural lines.

WHAT: A five-month long educational and experiential program for twenty (20) participants.  Participants can be nominated by an organization, a company, or may nominate themselves.  The program is funded by in-kind donations, grants, sponsorships and tuition.  Participants attend five Challenge Days and three Retreats from January through May 2016. Challenge Days are led by LSJI Alumni and feature presentations and discussions with local leaders in business, government, education, technology, agriculture non-profit, environmental.  The major areas to be covered in the program are:

  • State, county and municipal government
  • Natural resources and land use planning
  • Economic Development
  • Health, Education and Social Services
  • Arts, Culture and History

The program is coordinated by Co-Directors from each island who work with the participants to provide continuity throughout the program.  LSJI Alumni contribute to curriculum development, facilitation and offer logistical support.

COSTS: There is a non-refundable application fee of $50.00 due at the time of your application. Tuition for each participant in Leadership San Juan Islands is $750. Tuition is payable upon receipt of invoice after acceptance into the program and must be paid by January, 2017, unless other arrangements have been made. You have the option of paying with a credit/debit card through the Paypal link below.  LSJI has some tuition assistance and payment plans are available. Neither your request for tuition assistance nor other payment options will impact the review of your application. (Please see the “Application Form” tab for additional information.)

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Each selected participant is asked to make a commitment to provide one hundred hours voluntary service to a local organization following commencement.  Assistance will be provided in connecting graduates with an opportunity that matches their interests and skills.

We urge you to consider participation in Leadership San Juan Islands as a commitment to the future. We see our graduates having a long-standing influence, actively leading our community in positions of responsibility in employment, government, non-profit enterprise and community action.

The future of the islands will be decided in the islands. Please join us! 


Jennifer Rice, Program Coordinator
Telephone: 206-310-7271


Mailing address:

Leadership San Juan Islands
P.O. Box 713
Friday Harbor, WA 98250