Community Development Society

News and Information

Jane's Jottings - Notes from the CDS Board Chair


Dear Colleagues:

I'm trying again this month to generate responses to last month's blog about the Call to Serve -- service on the CDS Board, on committees, presenting at the annual conference, and other spots. We need you to volunteer your time to help your professional community maintain itself and help yourself grow in the process of that experience. If you have even a pinch of interest, call me -- at 651-303-5263 (USA), or email me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

About a thousand years ago when I first joined CDS, at age 30 (I'm 62 now) I immediately felt at home. Why? Because my curiosity about many things having to do with community, economic, and rural development all resided in the people and ideas and experiences that populated the CDS community.

What was exciting then and is still amazing now is that we share ideas across disciplines. We learn from each other whether we come from the practitioner ranks, teaching ranks, research, students, and community members, too. We embrace a diversity of ideas and backgrounds because communities are diverse and issues interrelate. Solutions come from everywhere and everyone, working together for the common good. Read our values inherent in the CDS Principles of Good Practice. That's who we are.

And just as we can wax philosophical about our guiding values, we must also take our turns on the teams that keep the mechanics of our organization working, too. If you've served on the CDS Board in the past, consider running again this coming year. If you've had some committee experience, step up to run for the CDS Board.

We need experienced operators on the ride. We are especially in need of people to run for the Vice Chair of Operations, because that is always an open seat each year that begins the three-year commitment: 1st year Vice Chair of Operations; 2nd year Vice Chair of Programs, and 3rd year -- Chair of the CDS Board.

Elections will happen next spring, 2020, so there's still some time to mull it over. It's a commitment, no doubt. Having done that in my 30s, over 25 years ago, and now for my second (and hopefully last) time, I also know it's a deep honor and humbling to have front-row seats in an association, in a field, so relevant and critical to solving the challenges of our times.

CDS needs you now to lead our CDS community and our evolving field into the future -- a future as bright as the leadership lights we can muster.

Please, answer the call to serve. You'll have great mentors along the way. The time you give will be returned a hundred-fold in experiences and support throughout your career. At least it did in mine. CDS was the constant in a long career as a CD practitioner that took me from one sector to the next, always with community as the foundation, and CDS colleagues I could count on for advice, friendship, and moral support.

Time for you to take up the baton! Connect with me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. - I can't wait for the conversation to begin!

--Jane Leonard, 2019-2020 CDS Board Chair


Jane's Jottings: Notes from the CDS Chair
Call for Interest: Community Development Society E...
Powered by EasyBlog for Joomla!