Emerging Leaders Virtual Cohort

We are pleased to announce the inaugural year of our Emerging Leaders Virtual Cohort.  This program is designed to connect emerging leaders throughout New England in a format that allows for thoughtful discussion and critical examination of subjects pertaining to library leadership.  We will feature engaging guest speakers, provide tools for success in leadership, and prepare participants to meet current and future challenges.

Participants in this cohort will have access to speakers, mentors, supplemental readings, and other emerging leaders through a ten-week interactive program, which will focus on developing and understanding leadership styles, discussing issues in library leadership, and building a leadership toolkit.  All graduates will have the opportunity to stay connected with their cohort after the program has ended to continue to foster relationships and seek support from one another.

Topics covered

  • Leadership Theories
  • Your Leadership Style
  • EDI and Leadership
  • Leading Change
  • Managing Differences
  • Advocacy
  • Negotiating
  • Leading in Your Community
  • Power
  • Setting Goals

Cohort meetings

Weekly for two hours on Mondays August 9, 2021 - October 11, 2021.  The meeting time will be chosen based on the preference of the majority of cohort members.


  • Must be a current NELA member.
  • Must be employed or be seeking employment in a New England library.
  • Must have no more than five years of experience in a library management position.
  • Must agree to abide by the NELA Code of Conduct.
  • Open to all types of library workers.
  • Master’s Degree in Library Science is not required.
  • Qualifying NELLS graduates are welcome to apply.

How was this program developed?

While the COVID-19 pandemic has forced us to suspend the in-person NELLS program for this year, NELA remains dedicated to providing emerging leaders with quality leadership training and the opportunity to connect with other library leaders throughout the region. Late last year, we surveyed our members for feedback on what kind of leadership training library workers would want in these unprecedented times. Nearly 200 respondents offered input on the format, topics, and structure they would like to see this year. These responses helped inform the content and structure of this course.

Interested in sponsoring?

Sponsorship Information