Leadership Academy on Ending Homelessness

In 2015, a historic gathering occurred at Stonewall Resort in West Virginia. 200 leaders in ending homelessness came together from Canada and the United States to build a network with other leaders that share the same passion, and learn new leadership tools and strategies. The evaluation of the event was overwhelming awesome. Our first cohort of leaders encouraged us to offer the program again, and sooner rather than later, for other leaders to have the opportunity to share, learn and grow.


If you are dedicated to ending homelessness and want to improve your leadership chops while meeting other leaders in the same boat as you, this is the experience you have been waiting for.

The Leadership Academy is NOT a conference. You are strategically placed with a small group of other leaders. You participate in the materials and share with them along the way. As we know from the 2015 Academy, you are likely to form bonds that will become instrumental in your professional career beyond the Academy. 


The most important work we will ever do in our lifetime is end homelessness. This intensive program is designed to help you hone your leadership skills to achieve that objective. It happens in a tranquil setting (Stonewall Resort) where you will have ample time to reflect and practice some self care as well.

The Leadership Academy is intentionally for existing and emerging leaders in ending homelessness. It is the only event of its kind in our sector. So if you are an existing leader that needs some renewal and refreshing of skills, you will love it. If you are about to become a leader or newly became a leader, you want to come and fill up your toolbox.


Some of the materials have been refined based upon our evaluation from the 2015 program. We have also decreased the size to a maximum of 150 people to ensure we do not resemble a monster conference.


You have an Academy Master – Iain De Jong. With the exception of a couple of special guests, he delivers all of the material and walks you and your team through each session. He also instructs you on the reflecting and personal work that you need to do outside of session. That usually means the end of the day or evening.

If you are unfamiliar with Iain, a few warnings: he will say provocative things; the F-bomb drops out of his mouth sometimes; he knows the stuff he is talking about; one moment he will be completely nerding out and the next he will be making pop culture references; “dressed up” means wearing a clean t-shirt and jeans; and, he will get into your brain and heart when it comes to ending homelessness, one moment making you laugh so hard you are crying, and the next moment having you hold back the tears from exposing emotional vulnerability.

You will also find the overall approach and mood different from other events you may have been to in the past. For example, music is played during short breaks and dancing or air guitar is encouraged. Because it is in a fairly remote resort, surrounded by the beauty of West Virginia, you will also find yourself hanging out with all other attendees around the campfire or in one of the restaurants.


You will learn about the foundations of leadership and how that relates to a complex social issue like ending homelessness. You will be challenged to create a strong vision, and how to create and nurture other people to work on implementing the vision. You will learn new skills when it comes to examining a problem and how to stimulate creativity to address those problems. You can also expect to learn how to use data to help you understand what is really going on, how to structure your resources, and how to create an internal and external narrative of success. You will leave having a stronger sense of how to create the value proposition for ending homelessness, and how you and all of your strengths have a role in making it successful in your organization and community.

All of this will be delivered with authenticity and vulnerable through storytelling, jokes, wit, and examples. You will learn the material best if you come ready to listen, learn, think, discern, and make change in your life, while also wanting to share and grow with others.


On-site registration will be from 10:00 am – 12:00 pm on October 25 in the Conference Center lobby. This is the time to pick up your Academy materials and check-in with WVCEH and OrgCode staff.

We start on October 25 at 1pm in the conference center. We finish the first and second day by no later than 4:30pm. Sessions on October 26 and 27 begin at 9:30am. On October 27, we are done by no later than 3pm.


There are 150 guest rooms on the room block at a rate of $129 per night. Check-in is at 4:00 pm and check-out is at 11:00 am. There is also a limited number of 3 and 4 bedroom cottages held for Academy attendees. If you want to bring your team, this the perfect option for you to bond and reflect on each day’s materials. If there are multiple people from the same agency, attendees are encouraged to share lodging rooms if at all possible.

To reserve your room or cottage, call Stonewall Resort at 888-278-8150. We highly recommend making your reservation as soon as you register for the Academy. Use the group code “Leadership Academy” to ensure you get on our room block and get the best rate possible!


The absolute easiest way to get there is fly to Pittsburgh, rent a car and drive a couple hours down to Stonewall Resort.

You can also fly into Charleston, West Virginia’s Yeager Airport and drive 1 ½ hours up to Stonewall. There are plenty of car rental options in the Charleston area and Yeager offers inbound flights from most major hubs in the Midwest and east coast.

There are a limited number of commuter flights that come from Washington Dulles Airport into Clarksburg Regional Airport on a daily basis. Attendees at the 2015 Academy found this to be somewhat inconvenient due to the arrival and departure times. There are also plenty of car rental options in Clarksburg as well. Clarksburg is only about 30 minutes north of Stonewall.


It is at a Resort. Come a day early or stay a day late. If you are golfer, bring your clubs. If you like to walk or hike, bring the right shoes. There are also paddleboats and the like. There is a boat cruise. Bring your speedo and take a dip in the pool. Book a time in the spa and get some pampering.


Stonewall Resort sits on over 1,900 acres of pristine West Virginia wilderness, just 3 miles from Interstate-79. This vast State Park is home to Stonewall Jackson Lake and Stonewall Resort Hotel and Conference Center. There are abundant opportunities for outdoor recreation, relaxation and adventure. Whether you chose to stay in the AAA, Four Diamond Adirondack-style lodge, or the beautifully appointed salt-box style cottages across the lake, you’ll appreciate the exceptional amenities and views Stonewall Resort offers. West Virginia is breathtaking in the fall, and we will encourage you to get out and get some mountain air. There will be a social event on Wednesday night of the Academy. Nearby Weston, WV also has some awesome things to do, like a ghost tour at the Trans-Allegheny Asylum that was featured on “Ghost Hunters”, a wonderful restaurant called “Thyme Bistro”, a mill run by the family of General Stonewall Jackson and an awesome winery that will be hosting the event on Wednesday evening.


Register by May 31 for $489.

Register between June 1 and August 31 for $539.

Starting September 1, if there are any spaces available, it will be $599.

Once you are registered, the fee is transferable, but non-refundable.

All registrations and payments for the Leadership Academy can be completed below.

If four or more people are registering through the same organization, there is a 15% discount. You will need to call WVCEH at 304-842-9522 to arrange for the group discount.


*****************SCHOLARSHIPS ARE NOW FULL*************************

A maximum of 7 scholarships are available. To apply for a scholarship, email [email protected] and make sure you put “Scholarship Request” in the subject. In the body outline why you need the scholarship, and why it is important to you and your organization/community that you attend. Once the scholarships are filled, no others will be released. Those applying for scholarship are fully responsible for getting to the Academy, as well as their accommodation and incidentals. Scholarships only cover the registration cost. Please do not apply for one of the scholarship positions if you are uncertain you will have funding to get to the event, have accommodation at the event, or eat during your time in West Virginia.


September 08, 2016 at 10am - September 10, 2016
Stonewall Resort
940 Resort Dr
Roanoke, WV 26447
United States
Google map and directions
Iain De Jong · · 1 (800) 355-0420

Will you come?

$599.00 Registration after September 1 (based on availability)
Registration after September 1 (based on availability)
$539.00 Registration between June 1 and August 31
Registration between June and August 31

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