CLA 2.1

Welcome to Community Leadership Alliance of Southwest Wisconsin (CLA) – CLA 2.1. Thanks for checking out our website to learn more about our program, and the series of “conversations” we plan to have in 2021. We purposely called these “conversations” because that is truly what we want them to be. Open, honest conversations or discussions about topics that are real, relevant, and essential, if we desire our communities to become stronger and build shared visions of what that future looks like. It’s our hope and belief that these conversations could become as valuable as our traditional classes have been for the last 20 years.

Some details…

Our plan is to offer 10 conversations centered around topics that are relevant and appropriate for the time we are living in right now. Today. What we are seeing, hearing, and experiencing locally, in our state, and across the country, through the eyes and ears and hearts of those of us who live and work here in SW WI. If we are honest in our beliefs however, we feel intentional leadership and change needs to happen right here within our communities. That is why we are here. We hope that is why you are here as well – to explore ideas together that will lead to our individual leadership skills and our communities growth and progress.

We are providing a virtual space, our time, and the guiding themes for these conversations. We acknowledge and hope that the themes and conversations will create some discomfort within you. This is important because we know when we are comfortable, we are not learning. Our goal is for all of us to learn from one another. To step outside of your comfort zone. Our mission for CLA 2.1 is to create safe space for you to speak from your heart and your mind, with no judgement, no right or wrong answers… to create the place where we all belong – in a community.

We ask that you give yourself permission during these 90-minute sessions to be present. To share your story and your gifts with all of us who are here. To be free of the petty preoccupations that usually prevent us from giving ourselves permission to do something for you… and just you… so that you can learn, grow, and be a better you.

Still not sure? Want to learn more? Listen to this 16-minute podcast…

The cost of the conversations is $225.

If you are in need of financial assistance in order to be a part of these conversations, please reach out to CLA President, Barry Hottmann @ barry.hottmann@wisc.edu for more informaiton.

Register now!

As of right now, the sessions will be 90-minutes in length starting at 11:30 AM and running to 1:00 PM. We are open to a discussion regarding the time however. As the group forms, we can consider if there is a better time for everyone.

Included in the fee will be some additional offerings. Within a couple of days after each conversation we plan to have a happy hour Zoom in the evening for participants to connect outside of the normal day conversations. In addition, we plan to provide access to a private Facebook group to hopefully engage in additional discussions, network with other participants, share stories and experiences, and ultimately continue to learn in the safe space we all have created together.

We may also have some “one-off” sessions. We define “one-off” sessions as extra time that we make available to do a deeper dive into a particular topic. Maybe we bring in a speaker. Maybe it is unraveling more layers to reach a new level of understanding. We are not 100% sure they will happen, but we are certainly open to enriching the conversations when we feel it is necessary.


The proposed conversation dates are as follows:

  • February 3, 2021
  • February 17, 2021
  • March 3, 2021
  • March 17, 2021
  • March 31, 2021
  • April 14, 2021
  • April 28, 2021
  • May 12, 2021
  • May 26, 2021


If you know you are going to miss a session, it is certainly not a deal breaker. We understand that everyone is busy. Because this is new, we too are uncertain of many things. Therefore, an additional offering may be the ability for participants (for the same fee) to watch a recording of the sessions and then participate in the happy hours (most likely in the evenings), have access to the Facebook page, etc. Our goal is to be as flexible as possible.


Some of the topics may include:

  • Trust & Relationships
  • Vulnerability & Courage
  • Unconscious Bias
  • Understanding privilege (white fragility)
  • Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
  • Emotional intelligence and emotional literacy
  • Understanding power and the power of story
  • Asset Based Community Development
  • Community Organizing


The first conversation is FREE! January 20, 2021. Join us!

The deadline to sign-up for this first conversation is January 19, 2021. The same link below can also be used to sign up for all the conversations scheduled through May 2021.

If you were unable to join us for the first FREE conversation, you can watch it here! Then when you are ready to join us for the next one, click the register button above. Join us! You belong here!

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