A new group of 24 leaders has started their journey through the Leadership Vestavia Hills program.

The course provides an opportunity for city leaders to meet people they otherwise would not meet, learn different things about the city, and take an active role in making Vestavia Hills a better place to live, said Shannon Stewart , Course instructor.

Leadership Vestavia Hills has hosted various community events, such as Wing Ding, and helped create Youth Leadership Vestavia Hills, which trains high school students to become leaders, and the Community Leadership Awards, which recognize Vestavia Hills residents who enter the Local community.

“The leadership of Vestavia Hills began in 1996 when founder Dennis Anderson saw the opportunity to inform, inspire and empower leaders to make a difference in Vestavia Hills,” said President Leigh King Forstman. “We are excited to welcome the new class into our 25th anniversary year and look forward to celebrating our history and our influence in the community.”

Mitchell Weyandt, VP of Business Development at Rabren General Contractors, is attending this year’s class and is really excited to see how his city works on a deeper level. “Vestavia Hills is always at the forefront of all cities in the state, and I believe that our residents’ commitment to moving forward is key to this continued success.” He says there is a deep connection with a city that offers so much in terms of lifestyle, education, and business support that he wants to be part of giving back to the community he and his family live in.

Stewart said the first grade will focus on the history of Vestavia Hills and the Vestavia Hills executive program, while the second grade will focus on team building, personality types, conflict management, and the effective use of your type. Courses are becoming more and more Vestavia-centered and include courses devoted to economic development, educational policy and quality of life.

Past attendees said the class helped them grow in their professional careers as well, Stewart said. The group can also help counter social media rumors that could spread and harm the city, she said.

Lori Moler, VP of Customer Service for Children’s of Alabama, said she most looks forward to connecting with like-minded, motivated people who invest in the Vestavia Hills community and are motivated to connect, too get involved and make a difference. She has participated in the Corporate Leadership and Leadership Shelby County project in the past; She knew she would learn more about Vestavia Hills and capitalize on the community engagement she already has through Vestavia Hills Sunrise Rotary and the Vestavia Hills Chamber of Commerce. “I love my city and am looking forward to this experience.”

Looking forward to meeting other leaders and fellow citizens in our community with whom he may otherwise have no connection is one of the reasons why Danny Marshall, Partner at Strickland Trading and Board Member of Vestavia Hills Parks & Rec, applied to Hill to become part of Leadership Vestavia. He looks forward to learning more about the history of Vestavia Hills and better understanding the mechanisms of city government, clubs, schools and other community groups. He hopes to familiarize himself with the various happenings in the city. “Sometimes it is easy to see the city through the lens of one’s own personal activities and family involvement,” and he hopes to expand that perspective this year.

Greg Dunaway, Consumer Bank Retail Manager at SouthState Bank, grew up in Vestavia Hills. His parents and grandparents encouraged him to take every opportunity to support others through community service. One expectation he has for the year is to identify the underserved pockets of the ward. “Responsibility comes with the territory if you are lucky enough to be selected for a group like LVH. So this year I want to listen to as many leaders, citizens and organizations as possible and make a commitment to reaching those who help the most. “

The course 2021-22 consists of:

► Ty Arendall, Headmaster of Dolly Ridge Elementary School

► Ryan Blackenburg, Vice President of Corporate Banking at Bryant Bank

► Lisa Booher, running coach with Resolute Running

► Amanda Carmichael, Senior Consultant at Clarus Consulting

► Will Connor, VP / Financial Planning for Meld Financial

► Kimberly Cook, Councilor for the City of Vestavia Hills

► Nick D’Alessandro, Financial Director of Birmingham Orthodontics

► Jeremy Deal, Partner / Civil Engineer for Barnett Jones Wilson Structural

► Greg Dunaway, Consumer Bank Retail Manager at SouthState Bank

► Meredith Gay, SVP Finance / Controller of Highland Capital

► Katherine Gorham, President of the PTO Council; President of the Board of Trustees of Vestavia Hills Parks and Recreation

► Amy Hazelton, Workplace Ethics & Concerns Manager for Southern Company Services

► Cole Hendon, SVP / COO Credit Products for Regions Bank

► Reese Kincaid, Managing Director of Oakworth Capital Bank

► Danny Marshall, Partner at Strickland Trading

► Patrick Martin, Assistant Superintendent of Operations and Service for Vestavia Hills City Schools

► Jay McFarland, Commercial Optimization and Trading Manager for Southern Power Company

► Lori Moler, VP of Customer Service for Children’s of Alabama

► Ryan Nast, VP / Financial Advisor, Regions Bank

► Aimee Rainey, Assistant Superintendent of Teaching and Learning for Vestavia Hills City Schools

► Scott Stevens, CPA for BMSS Consultants

► Ross Swenson, Commercial Relationship Manager, Regions Bank

► Steve Vickery, Senior Vice President, Truist Bank

► Mitchell Weyandt, VP of Business Development at Rabren General Contractors

– Submitted by Shannon Stewart.