Sat, Dec. 07

Verde Valley Leadership Class VIII hosts regional issue day

Bob Rothrock

Bob Rothrock

Class VIII of Verde Valley Leadership held their Regional Skills Day hosted by VVL Class VII members, Oct. 25. The Issue Day events took place at Cottonwood Recreation Center. Verde Valley Leadership President Luke Sefton, Class IV Graduate, welcomed the new VVL class.

The morning session began with Carol Quasula, MSW, Programs Director and Eliza Pedersen-Louden, Support Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) Navigator, for Catholic Charities. They spoke about the many different programs they provide the community and the power of volunteerism, which has aided greatly in those programs.

The morning continued with Bob Rothrock, a long-time volunteer, reflecting experience from many years in Arizona and the area.  Bob encouraged members of Verde Valley Leadership to get involved in the community by volunteering, and gave specific ideas on how to encourage others to do the same.

After a lunch from Jerona/Java Café, the class then continued with Damien Browning, who told of his personal journey to recovery and motivation to help others. He and his fiancé, Ann Vickers, recently opened a recovery home in Cottonwood, The Hope House. The day continued with news from Cheri Marx, Verde Valley Youth Commission Board Member, and the plans for the Cottonwood Teen Center.

The group then toured the new Teen Center site, which is the old fire department building on Mingus Avenue, across from Cottonwood Middle School. They plan to have the center open and running by January of 2014. The afternoon continued with a video and discussion on leadership.

The day concluded with a discussion of Verde Valley Leadership Class VIII's activities and events during their first year in the program including: field trips, book reviews, and professional leadership shadowing.

Verde Valley Leadership is a two-year program focusing on leadership and as their vision states, "Inspiring Individuals to Action." Anyone interested in learning more about the program, hosting a field-trip, or making a tax deductible donation are encouraged to visit the website at

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