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NextGen Southside: 

Leadership Cohort at the

Cities Rising Summit

September 2020


Brought To You By:

Emerging leaders from the Dan River Region convened around ideas and solutions to move the region through and beyond the pandemic.

Over the course of the 7-week Cities Rising Summit in Fall of 2020, 14 emerging leaders from the Dan River Region in Southern Virginia attended thematic sessions and participated in facilitated debriefs to build relationships, develop leadership skills, and inspire ideas and solutions for their day-to-day work.


The cohort experience was an invaluable community-building opportunity, giving participants the chance to not only expand their networks but to think critically about how to leverage contacts and resources to amplify projects within—and outside of—the cohort.


Keep an eye out for the launch of our alumni program in 2021! 


Southern Virginia is in a period of transition—community leaders are retiring, industry is diversifying, downtowns are thriving, businesses are opening and public perception of the area is improving. Despite the uncertainty and challenges brought on by the COVID-19 crisis, it is an exciting time to live in the region.


To realize their regional potential, the next generation of leaders must be prepared to lead from any seat. The cohort provided a space for emerging leaders from Southern Virginia to serve as learners and contributors in the innovative and engaging environment present at the Cities Rising Summit. 


In conjunction with Tom Tom’s Cities Rising Summit, the cohort explored key questions raised at selected panels and presentations. Together with multi-sector city leaders from across the nation, the Cohort exchanged ideas and develop solutions for their community around entrepreneurship, health, education, the arts, justice, and data.


2020 Facilitators

2020 Cohort



"What this did for me was help facilitate my ability to connect with people. A lot of us are involved in different silos where we’re working, so it was a good opportunity to meet different people and find out what their areas of expertise and areas of involvement are.” 

—  Steven Osborne, Attorney, Adams and Fisk, PLC

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