JOHNSON CITY – (Oct. 5, 2021) The Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) recently named Audrey Depelteau, director of the East Tennessee State University Innovation Lab, to participate in the 2021-22 class of the Appalachian Leadership Institute (ALI).
As an Appalachian Leadership Institute Fellow, Depelteau will participate in an extensive, nine-month series of skill-building seminars featuring regional experts, peer-to-peer learning and case study analysis. The program begins virtually in October and culminates with the Class of 2021-22's graduation in July 2022.
“I am honored and grateful to the ARC for accepting me into the Appalachian Leadership Institute and to ETSU and the ETSU Research Corporation for affording me the time to participate in this extensive nine-month program,” Depelteau said. “Appalachia is steeped in a rich heritage of music, food, faith, beauty, art and tradition. There are also socio-economic-educational-environmental disparities that are historically unique to this region. I believe the quality of our lives is a function of the quality of the conversations we engage in, and by participating in the ALI, I will be part of a diverse ‘think tank’ that will identify, develop and implement best practices that will address these issues and that will serve to inspire positive change in their communities.”
Depelteau will work directly with public policy, community development, education, investment and other professionals who live and/or work in the region. The group will build a robust network of leaders across the region; integrate community assets into long-last economic development strategies; and promote the diversity and commonalties of the 13 states in the Appalachian Region.
Upon completion of the program, Depelteau will automatically become part of the Appalachian Leadership Institute Network, a peer-to-peer working group committed to Appalachia’s future.
“Audrey is a brilliant selection for this incredible program,” said David Golden, chief executive officer for the ETSU Research Corporation. “It’s extremely impressive to see the list of companies that have scaled and launched from the iLab under her leadership. She is very adept at building relationships that extend beyond our region. She is the perfect candidate for the Appalachian Leadership Institute, and we could not be more proud of her acceptance.”
Depelteau was selected via a competitive application process. ARC received more than 115 qualified applications for the 2021-22 Appalachian Leadership Institute class.
“I am honored to congratulate the 2021-2022 class of Appalachian Leadership Institute fellows,” said ARC Federal Co-Chair Gayle Manchin. “These phenomenal Appalachians are the driving force of change in their communities. The work of this new class of fellows – and the ones who came before – gives me hope to the future of our region and is a testament to all that can be accomplished when Appalachians work together.”
The Appalachian Leadership Institute is a comprehensive regional leadership training program developed by the Appalachian Regional Commission in partnership with the University of Tennessee, Knoxville; The Howard H. Baker Center for Public Policy; Tuskegee University; and Collective Impact. More information about the Appalachian Leadership Institute is available at www.arc.gov/leadershipinstitute.
About the Appalachian Regional Commission
The Appalachian Regional Commission (www.arc.gov) is an economic development agency of the federal government and 13 state governments focusing on 420 counties across the Appalachian Region. ARC’s mission is to innovate, partner and invest to build community capacity and strengthen economic growth in Appalachia to help the Region achieve socioeconomic parity with the nation.