Welcome to the Natural Leaders Initiative!

Supporting the passion, talent, commitment and

impact of our community's emerging leaders


Pay It Forward Image

Who inspired and supported your leadership? Thank them while helping raise funds to support the new leaders in NLI's Fall leadership development group!

Check out NLI's Pay It Forward campaign today!


The Natural Leaders Initiative (NLI) was founded in 2007 to support and develop one of Tompkins County's greatest untapped resources -- the large number of "everyday" or "natural" leaders working within their own families, neighborhoods and communities to build a stronger, more inclusive, more socially just and ecologically sound community for us all.

Our community has many such natural leaders, but they aren't always recognized as "leaders" by others. And they rarely claim that title for themselves. Yet with the support and company of others, they have a wealth of passion, talent, energy, knowledge, skills, ideas and relationships to get things done.

NLI also assists other community groups and organizations -- particularly those with a commitment to build social just and ecologically sound communities -- to more effectively develop, support and include diverse groups of natural leaders.

"I was able to see that we made something happen. We came up with an idea and saw it though. I might not have thought I was much of a leader (before), but I do have leadership"  -- NLI participant


Last updated: June 17th 2013 - 11:58am