For the health and safety of our participants and staff, access to LSM program sessions will be limited to class members, staff, and scheduled speakers and participants.

LEONARDTOWN, Md. – October 16, 2020 – On October 8 & 9, the Leadership Southern Maryland (LSM) Class of 2020 participated in the last of nine educational sessions for LSM’s 2019-20 Executive Program – Energy and Environment.

The two-day event began at St. Mary’s County Metropolitan Commission’s Marlay-Taylor Water Reclamation Facility where the class received an overview of Metcom’s operations, learned about the wastewater treatment process, and toured the on-site lab which conducts water quality testing and analysis.  The afternoon portion of the session was conducted virtually, allowing class members to hear from representatives of Exelon’s Calvert Cliffs Nuclear Power Plant and Southern Maryland Electric Cooperative (SMECO).  These presentations provided an overview of energy production in the region and gave the class insight into the organizations’ leadership structures.

The second day began with a visit to the Loveville Produce Auction, allowing the participants to experience “commerce in action” while observing interaction of the Mennonite and Amish agricultural community with local restaurateurs, grocers, and individuals who purchased from their harvests. Several class members got in on the bidding action, taking home pumpkins, floral arrangements, and other seasonal produce.  The participants then traveled to Farming 4 Hunger where they had an opportunity to learn about the farm’s origin story, mission, and daily operations.  The class also participated in several team-building activities to help them gain a fuller understanding of the impact of the organization and its programs on a larger scale.

Homecoming may have lasted for only one evening but the LSM Gives Back Challenge continues all month long!  Your class can earn bragging rights for topping the charts with the most giving points.  Click HERE for details on how to participate and help your class earn the title of “Most Giving Class Ever!”

LEONARDTOWN, Md. – October 9, 2020 – On October 1, 2020, Leadership Southern Maryland’s Class of 2021 held its first of nine program sessions to learn about economic and workforce development in the tri-county region. The program was sponsored by Calvert County Department of Economic Development, Charles County Economic Development Department, and St. Mary’s County Department of Economic Development.  Ruthy Davis LSM ’14, director of regional workforce and business development for Tri-County Council of Southern Maryland was the advocate for the session and planned the day’s events.

The day opened with a panel discussion featuring the economic development directors from Calvert, Charles, and St. Mary’s counties (Kelly Robertson-Slagle LSM’10, Darrell Brown, Chris Kaselemis).  The class then explored the topic of creating entrepreneurial communities with Wynne Briscoe, director of the Southern Region, Small Business Development Center; Hugh Burrell, director of the Velocity Center at Indian Head; and Matt Scassero LSM founding sponsor and director of the University of Maryland Unmanned Aerial Test Site.  The morning also included Ellen Flowers-Fields LSM’09, associate vice president of Continuing Education & Workforce Development, College of Southern Maryland who gave a presentation called “Getting Southern Maryland Back to Work.”

In the afternoon, the class delved into workforce development including virtual tours of The Charles County American Job Center and the JobSource Mobile Career Center.  The day concluded with Pam Wilkerson LSM’19, workforce operations manager from the Tri-County Council of Southern Maryland briefing the class on soft vs. hard skills.

At the conclusion of the program day, the class enjoyed a virtual LSM Homecoming hosted by the Leadership Southern Maryland Alumni Association.  Graduates from far and near gathered together to “meet” the newest class and discuss a month-long campaign to give back to the community.

LEONARDTOWN, Md. – October 8, 2020 – On September 25, 2020, Leadership Southern Maryland’s new Emerging Leaders Program (LEAP) Class of 2020 held its fifth of six program sessions.

This hybrid program day (half in-person, half virtual) began with a meeting at Hallowing Point Park in Prince Frederick. Those who were unable to attend in person participated by live stream. The day kicked off with a discussion on resiliency and stress management with Jennifer Voorhaar, Owner/Therapist, Hope and Healing Psychotherapy, LLC. The program continued with a hands-on meditation session, led by Tim McMichael, Certified RYT 200-hour yoga instructor and leader at Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR). This included a discussion on how meditation, and the discipline it requires, can help change one’s mindset in leadership.  Afterwards, there was a panel discussion with Calvert County leaders, Dawn Balinski, Board Member, Calvert County Public Schools; Mike Benton, Mayor, North Beach; and Lt. Col. Dave McDowell, Assistant Sheriff, Calvert County Sheriff’s Department.

After lunch, the group met virtually for the remainder of the day. The afternoon portion was led by Whitney, Bradley & Brown (WBB) Culture and Development team, David Jurkowski and Kelly Jasen. The discussion centered around navigating conflict and organizational change, including learning how to identify one’s core issues and how they are triggered when stress and anxiety levels increase.

Leadership Southern Maryland’s Emerging Leaders Program (LEAP) provides educational programming opportunities to new or emerging leaders in our region. Through a series of six “experiences,” young leaders will facilitate, foster, and refine their individual leadership understanding and abilities via structured course curriculum and a focus on self-discovery, teamwork, and networking. These sessions will conclude with a capstone project and graduation in October. Experts from across the region and state representing business, government, education, and the nonprofit community serve as panelists and guest speakers.


Leadership Southern Maryland is a 501(c)(3) organization by the Internal Revenue Service (EIN#26-2989381). Contributions are deductible as charitable contributions to the extent permitted by law.

For more information, please contact Denise Foster, Executive Director, Leadership Southern Maryland, 301-862-SOMD, via email or visit



LEONARDTOWN, MD – September 4, 2020: The Leadership Southern Maryland (LSM) Board of Directors is pleased to announce the selection of 29 Southern Maryland leaders for its 13th class – the Class of 2021.

From Baltimore County, works in Calvert County

Crystal G. Dowd, deputy director of Public Safety – Animal Services for Calvert County Government

From Calvert County –

Tamara L. Blake-Wallace, principal planner for Calvert County Department of Planning & Zoning
Erin M. Farley, community wellness manager for CalvertHealth

Stanley D. Harris, Jr., assistant division chief for Calvert County Department of Emergency Communications

Harvil C. Jenkins, senior vice president for MIL Corporation

Barry A. Murphy, chief financial officer for AIRtec, Inc.

Lauren Sampson, director of corporate and foundation relations for St. Mary’s College of Maryland

Laura A. Schuessler, head detailer for aviation engineering duty/ aviation maintenance duty officer communities, United States Navy

From Charles County –

Kerry P. Dull, director for Calvert County Department of Public Works

Erin Ferriter, action officer for the technical director for Naval Surface Warfare Center Indian Head EOD Technical Division
Kara A. Harrer, director of pharmacy for CalvertHealth

Monica A. Kempson, director of tax services for Askey, Askey & Associates

Darrin Z. Krivitsky, head of corporate operations for Naval Surface Warfare Center Indian Head EOD Technical Division

Jenny L. Plummer-Welker, long range planner for Calvert County Department of Planning & Zoning

From St. Mary’s County –

Kimberly Bannister, supervisory program manager for the US Department of Health & Human Services

Tracy Anne Barkhimer, president of Tracy A. Barkhimer, Acquisitions Strategy & Consulting

Lucia M. Beal, senior reliability compliance manager for SMECO

James H. Bolin, vice president at KBR

Dave D. Davison, vice president of business development for Naval Systems, Inc.

Heather M. Earhart, senior program manager, PSI Pax, Inc.

Ann M. Hawkins, director of patient access security, MedStar St. Mary’s Hospital

James R. Hayden, realtor with REMAX 100

Derrick W. Kingsley, prospective executive officer of Naval Air Station Patuxent River

Dawn M. Lessel, director of human resources for Zenetex

Deborah C. Settle, supervisor for field services administrative support for MetCom

Kenneth M. Sheffield, air operations officer for Naval Air Station Patuxent River

BJ Sievers, chief information officer for Cedar Point Federal Credit Union

Tara N. Strickland, director of communications for AVIAN

Marsha L. Williams, partner at Williams, McClernan & Stack, LLC

Following a two-day opening retreat in September, these class members will attend eight one- or two-day intense sessions focusing on economic and workforce development, defense, education, healthcare, public safety, housing and human services, multiculturalism, and energy and environment. These sessions will conclude with a closing retreat and graduation in May. More than 50 experts from across the region and state representing business, government, education, and the nonprofit community will serve as panelists and guest speakers.

Founded in 2008, LSM has successfully graduated over 350 regional leaders. LSM is an independent, educational leadership development organization designed to broaden the knowledge base of mid- to senior-level public and private sector executives about the critical issues, challenges, and opportunities facing the region. Leadership Southern Maryland is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization.