Are you the leader you aspire to be?


YPAL’s Emerging Leaders Program is a unique program in the Louisville area that addresses specific leadership development needs of young professionals as emerging leaders. The program spans seven classes over three months and is open to approximately 30 YPAL members selected via an application process.

Our Fall 2023 class is under-way! Check out their information below and stay tuned for Spring 2024 applications to open in December.

About the Program:
The Emerging Leaders Program is a comprehensive leadership development program. Participants will use structured exercises and assessments to develop improved awareness about themselves and others. The program also includes interaction with community leaders, reading material, and a group research project. The class will cover self-awareness, diversity, equity and inclusion, emotional intelligence, leadership, management, communication within a team, and presentation skills.

Fall 2023 class times/dates: Classes are from 5:00 – 8:00 p.m. E.S.T. (unless otherwise noted) in person on Mondays in Downtown Louisville. Dinner will be provided. All dates are mandatory.

September 11: Kick off Celebration (5:00 – 6:30 p.m.)

September 18: Class 1 – Emotional Intelligence

September 25:  Class 2 – Communication 

October 2: Optional – Class Social Gathering

October 16: Class 3 – Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

October 23: Class 4 – Leadership & Management

October 30: Class 5 – Presentation Skills

November 6: Class 6 – Presentation Coaching

November 13:  Class 7 – Final Presentations & Graduation

Questions about the classes, times, or application – no problem! Email YPAL’s Director of Leadership, Catherine Thompson at

Meet your facilitators:

Lenae Price, President & Founder at Mindset Collaborative: Lenae has 19 years of experience leading in fast-paced environments and tackling complex challenges. She has successfully collaborated with top-level executives, legislators, community representatives, and specialists in most major industries. Lenae has studied psychology, emotional intelligence, communication, and earned a Masters in HR and Organizational Development. She is a trained coach, facilitator, and employee and labor relations consultant with a proven track record from coast to coast. Lenae’s WHY is to inspire and be inspired. Learn more about Lenae and her company by clicking here!

Jessica De La Rosa, Facilitator & Coach at Mindset Collaborative: Jess has 15 years of experience serving as a leader in arts and education. She has coached business professionals, actors, and educators on effective management and communication, emotional literacy, and public speaking and performance. As an educator and former behavioral therapist, Jess has taught all ages and abilities, using art as a bridge to unite neurodiverse demographics. Jess holds a BA in Theatre and an MFA in Acting, both from the University of Tennessee in Knoxville. Her WHY is to develop people so that they can take up their deserved space.

Michele Lawlis Shelton, CDP, CPC & founding CEO and Principal Consultant of Michele Shelton LLC: Michele facilitates our Diversity, Equity and Inclusion class through Michele Shelton LLC, a diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) consulting firm based in Louisville, KY.   As an international speaker, author, executive coach and thought leader on DEI, Michele guides courageous leaders beyond barriers that impede success. As a performance consultant, Michele continues to be a preferred advisor for organizations committed to investing in the creation of inclusive and equitable cultures that acknowledge, affirm and add value to the total experience of every person under their influence. Learn more about Michele and her company by clicking here!

Time Commitment:
The total time commitment over the three-month course is about 50 hours. Around 22 hours in the classroom (5:00 P.M. – 8:00 P.M.), 10-20 hours reading and taking the leadership assessments, and lastly, 15 hours on the group project. All classroom dates are in person and mandatory.

The cost of the Emerging Leaders Program is $475. This cost includes program materials, a book, dinner during each class and an assessment.

Tuition support and childcare stipends are available. The application for support is found in the ELP application.

Before you apply:

  1. Join YPAL! All applicants must be members of YPAL. Need to become a YPAL member before applying? Join here!
  2. Talk to your employer about the time commitment and cost. Your ELP application will require a response for a payment plan and time commitment approval from your supervisor. Need help asking your employer to approve the program? We got you covered! Check out this letter!
  3. Save the dates – go ahead and mark your calendar for the dates above.

Questions about the classes, times, or application – no problem! Email YPAL’s Director of Leadership, Catherine Thompson at


Previous Program Graduates:

Spring 2013 Fall 2013 Spring 2014 Fall 2014 Spring 2015 Fall 2015 Spring 2016 Fall 2016 Spring 2017 |  Fall 2017 Spring 2018 | Fall 2018 | Spring 2019 Fall 2019 | Spring 2020 | Fall 2020 | Spring 2021 | Fall 2021 | Spring 2022 | Fall 2022 | Spring 2023


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