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The key ingredient in successful projects is an effective and persistent local champion. The Climate Catalysts Leadership Program supports the power of individuals and their communities to achieve transformational climate economy progress.

Facing the climate challenge means mobilizing at all levels of human organization. Strong and inspirational leaders are key in unifying and sparking collective action. With hundreds of tight-knit communities, Vermont is a place that can model unique, powerful, and replicable local actions for growing the climate economy. The Climate Catalysts Program will bring together 10 local leaders from Vermont communities for a year-long process focused on building peer connections, strengthening leadership skills and providing project development support.

Participants will design and implement a local project as a focus of their program participation. The cohort will include a mix of new, emerging, and experienced leaders from a variety of large and small communities who have ideas for projects that are both ambitious and achievable. Program partners will be recruited to provide material support and expertise. The cohort will receive training, peer connections, and consultative support as they develop their projects. The goal will be to move projects from concept to reality while investing in leaders who provide multi-faceted service to their communities.

We are looking to build a diverse mix of participants for this inaugural year of the program. Ideal candidates may come from all walks of life and have leadership experience ranging from decades to none-at-all. Their focus and project may be part of their paid work or something they are doing as an elected/appointed leader or as an unaffiliated volunteer. All that we ask is that they have a deep commitment and time to dedicate to their project.

Possible projects could include a neighbor-to-neighbor weatherization campaign, a community solar project, energy improvements at a school or municipal building, electrification of vehicle fleets, mowers, or heating systems, strengthening downtown, starting an energy committee and developing an energy action plan, hosting an e-bike lending library, modern wood heating projects, hosting a series of workshops, or whatever else participants imagine that grows the economy and tackles climate change.

Learn more about the curriculum and program schedule by clicking here (and here for a handout).

A webinar about the program was hosted on January 14. You can view a recording of that webinar by clicking here -

The application period for the 2020 program is now closed. 45 leaders from all corners of Vermont with a great mix of ideas applied to participate for 2020. Check back here in the coming weeks for an announcment about the 2020 cohort and for updates on their projects and progress. For anyone interested, please consider applying for round 2 of the program that will take place in 2021.