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Fellowship for Leaders Strengthening Democracy

There is widespread agreement that the influence of money continues to dominate our three branches of government, putting our democracy at risk. Funders and advocates recognize the need to bring new voices into the efforts to reduce undue influence of special interests on the nation’s political and judicial systems. The opportunity exists to engage underrepresented communities: people of color, women, young people and members of the LGBTQ community.

In partnership with the Piper Fund, Rockwood is building a fellowship cohort of leaders living in key states across the country who are working together to promote judicial independence and advance meaningful money in politics reform.  These leaders are championing efforts to remove barriers to participation, increase representation of diverse communities, and protect the integrity of our democratic institutions 1.

About The Fellowship

Session One: Art of Leadership, January 28 – February 1, 2019.  San Jose, California

The Art of Leadership is an intensive retreat workshop in which participants will hone skills related to articulating vision, managing difficult conversations, and identifying personal leadership strengths and challenges. Each participant receives a 360-degree leadership evaluation from peers.

Session Two: May 20 – 24, 2019.  Lansdowne, Virginia

The second Fellowship retreat builds off the tools and experience of the Art of Leadership, and fosters more opportunities for field dialogue. It is designed for leaders to enhance their skills in areas of both leadership and collaboration, including an examination of power (personal, positional and institutional), strategy and performance, and personal and organizational sustainability.  This retreat is designed based on the feedback of the fellows to continue to foster movement building and deepen their transformational practice.


José Acevedo

José is a senior partner at New World Consulting and an expert in facilitating the development of leadership skills and the creation of high-performing organizations. José has spent the last 30 years helping a broad range of groups throughout the world build effective learning teams that function innovatively in pursuit of specific organizational results.

Helen S. Kim

Helen has over 24 years of experience working with leaders, organizations and networks advocating for racial, economic and environmental justice. As a consultant and facilitator, her focus is on transforming leadership culture, developing innovative strategies, and building effective partnerships. She is the co-author of Working Across Generations: Defining the Future of Nonprofit Leadership and is affiliated with the Building Movement Project, RoadMap and the Flexible Leadership Program. She emigrated from Korea when she was twelve years old, studied history and law, and is guided by a passion for justice and generosity of spirit.

Additional Program Offerings

Peer Coaching

Coaching is both an important leadership skill, and a resource for social change leaders. During the Fellowship, leaders will be partnered with two other Fellows to engage in a peer coaching relationship over the course of the program.

Leadership Practices and Additional Leadership Resources

To reinforce the tools of the Fellowship Program, Rockwood provides leadership practice assignments, and course materials about leadership, partnership and organizations.


The program has an estimated value of $12,000 per fellow. With the support of the Piper Fund, Rockwood will cover the fellows’ fees, plus room and board costs. Travel costs are covered by the fellow or their organization, and Rockwood has limited travel funds for which fellows can apply as needed.

Rockwood Community Call

Cecily Rose Engelhart

Life Coach and Speaker

July 25 | 12 PT / 3 ET