Annual LEAD Summit Brings Central Texas Leaders Together


Young professionals from across industries gathered virtually on Friday, March 12, 2021 for a day of learning, exploration, action, and development at the 4th annual LEAD Summit. Participants had the opportunity to attend fourteen leadership sessions focused on resiliency, growth, community, and engagement. “We’re here today, as current leaders and as future leaders, ready to take on what comes next,” said Alyssia Palacios-Woods, President & CEO of the Young Chamber.

The LEAD Summit kicked off with an opening keynote presentation by Pamela Benson Owens on ways to personally and professionally navigate today’s leadership landscape, and was followed by leadership panels, wellness sessions, fireside chats, and personalized workshops. Attendees were then invited to a virtual happy hour to network with fellow attendees over a variety of topics.

After the opening keynote, participants had the option to attend one of three morning panel discussions followed by three wellness breakout sessions including:

  • A New Kind of Balance
  • How to LEAD in the Workplace
  • Policy for Our Future
  • Healthy Minds, Healthy Business
  • Workday Workout
  • Meditation for Newbies (and everyone else!)


What Attendees Had to Say

“I really felt empowered at the Keynote. I think that was the perfect first session!”

Ashley A.

“The interactive workshop was amazing and probably the most valuable, as well as the wellness session.”

Kristina J.

“I liked a lot of the speakers and topics! The goodie bags were great, I liked the option to use the chat and the opportunity to engage in short breakout rooms in one of my sessions.”

“I loved the long ending session with time for practical activities and time to dive into in-depth knowledge and skills.”

After a 1-on-1 Networking and Lunch Break, attendees were able to hear from local leaders in three fireside chats:

  • The Power of Cheese with Kendall and John Antonelli, Owners of Antonelli’s Cheese Shop
  • A Window of Opportunity with Robert Alvarez, Chief Financial Officer of BigCommerce
  • We the People with Leslie Wingo, CEO of Sanders\Wingo

The afternoon sessions wrapped up with 90-minute Interactive Workshops that allowed attendees to work with the facilitator and other participants to develop actionable items for their personal and professional development journeys:

  • Building Your Resiliency Reservoir
  • Designing Your Life
  • Wisdom with Wings: Building Skills that Always Transfer

LEAD Summit is not complete without the conversations and opportunity to connect with other attendees, even virtually. Throughout the day, individuals had the chance to network in 1-on-1 conversations with each and the day concluded with the Unplugged Networking Mixer. Attendees were able to connect in small groups to discuss topics such as Community Involvement, Civic Engagement, Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, and more.

Thank you to everyone who made this day possible!

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Sponsors for the LEAD Summit included:
Texas Mutual Insurance Company  |  Tito’s Handmade Vodka
Amplify Credit Union  |  Ascension Seton  |  Baylor Executive MBA Program  |  Capital Metro  |  Civilitude  |  vcfo
A+ Federal Credit Union  |  Brown Distributing Co.  |  JLL  |  Primrose Schools

Event Partners included:
ALLPURE Hand Sanitizer  |  Classic Forms & Products  |  H-E-B  |  Waterloo Sparkling Water

Community Partners included:
Austin Area Urban League Young Professionals | Austin Chamber of Commerce | Austin Independent Business Alliance | Austin Technology Council | Friends of the House | Georgetown Young Professionals | Greater Austin Asian Chamber of Commerce | Greater Austin Hispanic Chamber of Commerce | Habitat Young Professionals | Leadership Austin | Leander Chamber of Commerce | Texas Young Professionals of Austin | The New Philanthropists | TreeFolks Young Professionals | Young Hispanic Professional Association of Austin | Young Men’s Business League | Young Nonprofit Professionals Network of Austin | Young Women’s Alliance