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NewsCongratulations to Our 2023 Evolving Leaders Program Graduates

VGM's Evolving Leader Program (ELP) recently held its graduation for the class of 2023. This program was created in 2022 for VGM employees who display a high potential for future or continued success as a leader within VGM. This year, the graduating class of ELP members consisted of 13 outstanding leaders. They are:

2023 Evolving Leaders Program Graduates

  • Kim Bemus – Facilities Services
  • Amanda Bovy – HOMELINK
  • Lincoln Decklever – Two Rivers Marketing
  • Matt Flaherty – VGM Fulfillment
  • Shelby Graveman – VGM & Associates
  • Whitney Horras – Redstone Content Solutions
  • Brooke Kraft – Talent Acquisition
  • Michael Larsen – Corporate IT
  • Becca Mullenbach – VGM Insurance
  • Sydney Owen – Forbin
  • Nick Patten – VGM Fulfillment
  • Bryce Sivesind – HOMELINK
  • Jess Veren – Forbin

About the Program

Over the course of six months, ELP members follow a curriculum focused on five core leadership competencies:

  • Leadership Mindset
  • Communication Skills
  • Business Relationships & Trust
  • Decision Making & Courage
  • Personal Development

The program is led by Sara Laures, chief people officer; Paul DiMarco, VP of organizational development; and Cassi Price, VP of corporate projects. Members attend both in-class education and complete a self-guided curriculum that includes job shadowing, mentorships, and online courses.

At the end of the program, ELP members must complete a capstone presentation to a group of VGM senior leaders. Using the knowledge they’ve gained about the organization and leadership throughout the program, ELP members are challenged to present on a topic that could have a meaningful impact on the business.

“We’re proud of our 2023 ELP graduates and excited to see how they continue to create their futures at VGM,” DiMarco said. “We are committed to ensuring every employee owner has equality of opportunity to learn, grow, and advance. ELP is one more way we help guide the way.” 

Investing in Employee Owner Development

At VGM, we know that the best way to invest in our company is by investing in our employee owners. We’re constantly adding new programs and events to provide opportunities for employee owners to learn and grow. Some of these opportunities include:

  • Leadership Summit – This event, held every other year, sees employee owners from all over the U.S., as well as Canada, come together for networking and learning through presentations by both internal VGM presenters and external corporate thought leaders.  
  • Women in Leadership (WIL) – WIL is a strategic initiative to support, motivate, and empower women to recognize their ability to be leaders within the organization. New members are nominated each year to join a 9-month program and then remain in development together as alumni of WIL. 
  • Young Professionals (YP) Program – Strategic initiative to educate and network with younger generations within VGM. The target audience includes employees who are under 40 years old. 
  • Leadership Cohorts – Consisting of employee owners in leadership positions, these ongoing groups offer continued development and create a network where people can learn ways to better serve their teams. We currently have three leadership cohorts with plans to create more.  
  • Mentorships – Partnership between an experienced employee and a less experienced employee to foster professional growth, enhance skill development and help navigate various topics encountered throughout their career.
  • Certified Coaches – VGM has two certified coaches on staff who are available to coach employees on a variety of topics around personal and professional goals. Paul DiMarco and Sara Laures are both certified through the International Coach Federation.
  • VGMU – A self-paced e-learning platform that houses multiple courses for employees that focus on leadership development and other key competencies that support your entire career journey. 
  • Stretch Assignments – Available to any employee who wants to be challenged outside of their daily responsibilities by working together with other employees on a project team.

“VGM has always been dedicated to providing opportunities for leadership development,” Laures said. “I started as a patient care coordinator in our HOMELINK division in 1998. Through the resources and mentorships available to me at VGM, I was able to learn and grow into the position I hold today—I was able to create my future.”

She added, “If you’re looking for a workplace where you can be yourself, where you feel you belong, and where you can create your future, I encourage you to look at VGM.” 

To learn more about VGM Group and the opportunities available, visit