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  • Leadership Fairbanks is a program facilitated by the Fairbanks Chamber of Commerce designed to help emerging and established leaders expand their existing leadership skills through exposure to challenging ideas, insights from community leaders, lively discussion, and personal reflection. Participating in Leadership Fairbanks is an inspiring and challenging experience in which you will develop lifelong relationships with leaders in our community while learning the skills necessary to become a valued leader in your organization and in our community.

    A group of about 25 leaders are selected to participate in nine day-long sessions - once a month for nine months.

    Applicants must be able to attend 8 of the 9 sessions (dates are listed below) and come to each session prepared to contribute by asking questions and sharing their unique perspectives.

    All participants must demonstrate:

    • Passion for the people and future of our region and a personal commitment to help improve the quality of life in the Fairbanks area.
    • Commitment to the community through current and past activities.
    • Willingness to commit the requisite time and energy to complete the program, which requires the full support of their organizations.

    Successful Leadership Fairbanks applicants routinely go on to hold influential leadership roles and help to positively change the future of our community.


  • Application period for the class of 2022 has closed. 


  • Application Components include:

    • Online Application
    • Short Bio
    • Headshot
    • A Letter of Recommendation


    Prepare to answer the following essay questions: 

    1. Why does service matter to you? How has serving others changed you? 

    2. What professional achievement or skill are you most proud of and why? 

    3. Identify what you believe to be the three most pressing problems and/or opportunities facing the greater Fairbanks area today. Explain. 

    4. What do you hope to contribute to your Leadership Fairbanks classmates? 

    5. What does it mean to lead? 



    $1,500 - Chamber Members

    $1,700 - Non-Chamber Members



  • Wednesday, September 15, 2021

    Wednesday, October 20, 2021

    Wednesday, November 17, 2021

    Wednesday, December 15, 2021

    Wednesday, January 19, 2022

    Wednesday, February 16, 2022

    Wednesday, March 23, 2022
    (4th Wednesday because of spring break)

    Wednesday, April 20, 2022

    TUESDAY, May 17, 2022



    Leadership Fairbanks is designed to challenge the way you think about effective leadership and equip you with the technical and emotional skills to be the kind of leader others want to follow. We accomplish this by engaging in rich discussions, hearing directly from community leaders, developing deep connections between students, discussing recorded talks from brilliant leaders, and learning the skills and techniques that lead to greater trust and personal effectiveness.

    Areas of Focus include:

    • Developing trust and credibility
    • Improving interpersonal communication
    • Engaging in constructive conflict
    • Thinking like an entrepreneur
    • Understanding the legislative process
    • The value of service & community involvement
    • Managing your time and personal effectiveness
    • Embracing cultural diversity
    • Building a strong network of allies and mentors
    • Become leaders who develop new leaders
    • Working from a posture of gratitude


    Geoff Welch
    Date-Line Digital Printing
    Leadership Fairbanks Class of 2013
    (907) 479-3831


    Geoff Welch is an executive coach and the owner of Fairbanks, Alaska’s award winning Date-Line Digital Printing, where his “crisis of gratitude” was the genesis of their remarkable Thanks Fairbanks project. Each year they share thousands of free thank you cards with area residents as a way of spreading a culture of gratitude. A self-proclaimed “control enthusiast,” his life has been turned upside down since his wife and daughter tricked him into allowing a Boston Terrier named Bernie into their home.

    Find out more at http://www.geoffwelch.com




    This scholarship was established in 2020 and aims to encourage and increase diversity of emerging and established leaders from the Greater Fairbanks area who participate in the annual Leadership Fairbanks program hosted by the Greater Fairbanks Chamber of Commerce.

    We invite applications from members of all underrepresented groups, including but not limited to race, ethnicity, national origin, sexual identity, gender identity, religious affiliation, age, ability, disability, etc. We also invite applications from members of underrepresented groups that don't fit into the categories listed above, as we recognize we may not have captured all groups in our description.

    A written recommendation with clear indication that the applicant has been identified by their organization for leadership development. If the applicant is the owner/principal of their business, the applicant can write their own recommendation letter.

    Scholarship recipients are expected to attend and participate in the entire Leadership Fairbanks program. Please ensure that you can fully attend during the dates and times of the sessions and commit to the time commitment of being a program participant before applying. These can be found at fairbankschamber.org/leadership-fairbanks.

    We do not expect scholarship recipients to be responsible for being an ambassador for their group or an educator of others. While learning and exchange may happen as a result of interactions between Leadership Fairbanks participants, scholarship recipients are encouraged to focus on getting the most out of their leadership development experience. Scholarship recipients will not be assigned special duties or obligations apart from attendance, participation to their comfort, and giving us feedback on their experience. These are basic expectations for all participants. Scholarship recipients will not be identified within the cohort.

    Applicant needs to have access to a computer with audio/visual capabilities and high-speed internet during the scheduled online sessions of the program and to complete components of the program between online group sessions.

    Scholarship Selection:
    The following criteria will be considered in the selection process:
    • All application materials are submitted and the applicant meets the eligibility requirements
    • The applicant has been identified by their employer as a candidate for leadership development (self employed can self identify)
    • How the applicant will be involved and committed to Leadership Fairbanks and their own development
    • How the applicant will benefit from receiving the scholarship
    • How the applicant will bring diverse life experiences to the program
    The Greater Fairbanks Chamber of Commerce will award scholarships at its discretion and as funds are available. There will be at least one scholarship available annually. Businesses and individuals can increase the number of scholarships available through sponsorship opportunities.

    The application deadline is Friday, September 3, 2021. The scholarship recipient will be notified no later than Friday, September 10.