Four CBC’ers Become Goodmon Fellows After Leadership Triangle Regional Class

Four CBC’ers Become Goodmon Fellows After Leadership Triangle Regional Class

“The biggest takeaway for me is the idea that it truly is up to us – each and every individual in the Triangle – to not only have a vision for how we want our communities to grow and change, but more importantly to bravely take action to do something about it”
— WRAL-FM Local Sales Manager Katie Phillips

CBC graduates
Several CBC’ers are among the Leadership Triangle 2013 Regional Class graduates including FOX 50’s Sylvia Lanier (center), WRAL-FM’s Katie Phillips (far r to l) & WRAL-TV’s Jeff Ritchie.
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Four more CBC’ers became Goodmon Fellows as the quartet graduated from the Leadership Triangle Spring Regional Program on Tuesday, May 14, 2013.   The 6pm event took place at the James B. Hunt Library on N.C. State’s Centennial Campus for the first time.

FOX 50 General Sales Manager Matt Donegan, FOX 50 Special Revenue Projects Manager Sylvia Lanier, WRAL-FM Local Sales Manager Katie Phillips and WRAL-TV IT Manager Jeff Ritchie completed the 8-week program and earned their Leadership Triangle diploma.

Pomp and Circumstance
CBC President & CEO Jim Goodmon, chair emeritus of the Leadership Triangle Board, talked to the graduates, their guests, and LT alumni, telling them to “have courage.”  During his remarks from the podium, Goodmon charged the group to “stay with it, what is important to you.”  He said not to let anything hinder them in their purpose.

He encouraged the group to start with themselves.  “Lead yourself, and then you can lead others.”

He also spoke of the importance of bi-partisanship.

“Think it through,” said Goodmon.  “There are ways to accomplish things.  Not left wing or right wing.”

“Things won’t get better if we don’t want to see things improve.”
– CBC President & CEO Jim Goodmon

The program also included the annual Triangle Trivia Challenge, led by Goodmon Fellow George Smart.   A spirited competition took place between the tables of attendees, in an attempt to prove their knowledge about the Triangle region. 

For the first time Quintiles served as presenting sponsor of the Spring Regional Class in 2013, and they plan to do so again for 2014.  CBC is an annual sponsor of Leadership Triangle.  ATC Vice President of Real Estate Michael Goodmon is the current Board Chair.

The CBC Graduates
The new CBC Goodmon Fellows jumped at the chance to participate in Leadership Triangle’s Regional Class.

“I was asked to assist with technical aspects of last year’s Goodmon awards ceremony,” said Ritchie.  “I quickly learned from the people involved with Leadership Triangle what a good opportunity becoming a Goodmon Fellow would be. When the opportunity came up to join the very next session on Regional Leadership, I couldn’t pass it up!”

Matt Donegan & Jim Goodmon
Corp’s Jim Goodmon (center) congratulates FOX 50’s Matt Donegan (right) on his Leadership Triangle graduation.

Donegan saw the LT opportunity as a vehicle for growing in his work.

“I wanted to expand my knowledge and business contacts in the Triangle,” he said.  “I really wanted to understand the major issues facing our growing population and potentially create future Public Service Campaigns with both the Public and Private sectors which we have done successfully at Fox 50 in the past.”

Phillips said a move to a rural community east of Raleigh after 17 years in the city made her realize “first-hand the significant differences between the urban areas in and around Raleigh, and the rural area where I now live. I consider myself lucky to have the opportunity to be a member of both communities. At the same time I’m learning that I never realized such a large gap in economic conditions existed between the two areas, which are only about an hour’s drive apart.”

She was “interested in learning more about the issues that face our region, the resources we might leverage to solve them by working together, and how I might contribute in a more meaningful way.“

Jim Goodmon
CBC President & CEO Jim Goodmon talks to the graduates about courage.

Best in Class
The CBC’ers enjoyed various aspects of the spring classes.

“The session that made the strongest impact was the one on Human Services in Wake County,” said Ritchie.  “As part of that session, we spent some time at The Healing Place, a residential program for recovering addicts. We met some participants in the program and had lunch with them. A gentleman I know through business several years back was a resident in the program That just made the reality glaringly obvious that anyone can end up in circumstances that turn their lives upside-down. I was thankful to have connected with him, and happy to know there are programs that help people with those achievable incremental steps to be successful in overcoming their life’s critical challenges.”

The trip to the Healing Place and several other venues impacted Phillips strongly as well.

“My favorite part of the program was the privilege of learning from three particular people who set fine examples of leadership, and inspired me to do more,” she said.  “These three people each noticed a community need in the course of their normal daily routines, and one day they did one little thing to address that need.  And the next day they built on what they had done the day before, and a few years later here we are in the present, and the Triangle is benefitting in an enormous way from the three normal, everyday, regular people who decided to do something about it.  For me they represent the potential that each of us holds and can tap into merely by embracing our passions and choosing to do something right now in the moment.”

The CBC Leadership Triangle graduates receive their diplomas from CBC’s Jim Goodmon (right) & Quintiles’ Steve Brechbiel (left).
Matt Donegan
FOX 50’s Matt Donegan
Sylvia Lanier
FOX 50’s Sylvia Lanier
Katie Phillips
WRAL-FM’s Katie Phillips
Jeff Ritchie
WRAL-TV’s Jeff Ritchie

Phillips talked about the three who impacted her so greatly.

“These three people who inspired me were Dennis Parnell, President and CEO of The Healing Place of Wake County, a former addict who got sober when he was my age now and from that point has done amazing things to ‘help people find their way back’ from addition; Jill Staton Bullard, founding Executive Director of the Inter-Faith Food Shuttle.  By not being afraid to jump in, start small and go from there, she created this amazing non-profit that is working to eliminate hunger in the Triangle.  Last but not least is Courtney Tellefsen, who started The Produce Box, a thriving local business that supports local farmers and serves families in the Triangle who seek to eat fresh, healthy, local food.  The common denominator here is that all 3 actually did what all of us can do – something!”

Phillips continued, “And for these three, their ‘somethings’ have become amazing organizations that make the Triangle a better place to live.  Because of Leadership Triangle, I am more driven than ever to make sure I take steps every day to contribute to positive changes in the Triangle where I work, and also in the small rural community where I live.”

Donegan hooked into a different trip.

“My favorite session was our trip to Hillsborough,” he said.  “I am a bit of a history buff and this small North Carolina town had roots that extended well into the early 1700’s. Hillsborough also reminded me of the historic towns of New England where I was born and raised. I was also impressed that the Mayor of Hillsborough-Tom Stevens is also a Goodmon Fellow and has worked hard to preserve its historic roots and showcase the town on a local and national level.”

What An Impact
All of the CBC’ers said they came away from the program with a greater understanding of the Triangle and the challenges we face.

Ritchie said he learned, “How I can make a difference at any level of decision making in the Triangle.  I became much more aware of the need for people to be active in supporting Regionalism. The ‘Three PPP’s – Profit, People, Planet – theology of how to make any company truly successful was inspiring. Not just in $$$ earned – which remains important! But that you don’t have to sacrifice people or planet to make that profit if you just use your resources wisely. In fact, if executed in a thoughtful manner, you can make all three P’s a reality.”

The quartet walked away with inspiration to make a difference.

“I learned that our current mindset and infrastructure will not be able to accommodate our growing needs unless real leadership is applied and solutions are executed,” said Donegan.  “ I also learned that there is a tremendous spirit of volunteerism in the Triangle-local businesses encouraging their employees to help the less fortunate. Our day long ‘Field Trip’ to the Healing Place of Wake County was proof of the excellence we produce in our community when we all work together.”     

A Canine Connection
CBC President & CEO Jim Goodmon spoke of the Plott Hound, the North Carolina state dog, as the epitome of courage during his remarks from the podium.  In 2000 Goodmon received the Plott Hound Courage Award from Common Cause North Carolina for his diligent and groundbreaking offering of free airtime to political candidates by CBC’s various broadcasting entities.  He got so interested in the dog that he bought one for his son, Michael.  WRAL-FM Local Sales Manager Katie Phillips had a special connection.

Boone, The Plott Hound

“On a side note, I have to say that one of my very favorite moments in LT happened last night when Mr. Goodmon told the story of the Plott Hound, State Dog of North Carolina, and namesake of an award he recently earned in honor of his courageous leadership,” she said.  “My husband, Eric, and I are madly in love with our Plott Hound, Boone, The Mighty and Courageous.”


Leadership Triangle 2013 Spring Graduation

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