Chautauqua Leadership Network celebrates 20th Class

Chautauqua Leadership Network Reunion. (submitted photo)

JAMESTOWN – The Chautauqua Leadership Network is celebrating 20 years of providing knowledge, team building skills and networking opportunities for our community and work force. CLN graduates are involved in all aspects of Chautauqua County from businesses and non-profit organizations to education and government offices. All CLN members get the tools they need to become better leaders.

To date, over 440 men and women have completed the almost yearlong course that begins with a weekend retreat and culminates with a “graduation” reception. The retreat is designed with team building exercises, leadership style assessments, problem solving techniques and networking at the forefront. Then each monthly session builds on these skills and affords an opportunity to use them in practical group projects. The sessions are often led by alumni of CLN who have experience in training the various leadership skills offered. CLN encourages past class members to attend sessions to broaden networking contacts and share experiences with the current class. The skill building sessions are held in various locations around the county enabling participants to gain awareness of and appreciation for Chautauqua County’s many community assets.

The highlight of the night was the presentations of two leadership awards. This year there were two honorees, Larry Robinson and Pene Hutton. (submitted Photo)

To commemorate the 20 year benchmark, CLN held a 20th Year Reunion Celebration Dinner on June 8 at the Chautauqua Golf Club. With over 140 people in attendance, the evening was filled with inspirational speakers, comedic skits, plenty of laughs and even some tears. R. Bard Schaack, Esq., one of the founding members of CLN, gave a brief history on how and why CLN was developed and the need for it in the community it benefits.

The highlight of the night was the presentations of two leadership awards. This year there were two honorees, Larry Robinson and Pene Hutton.

Larry Robinson of Partners & Robinson, an organizational and leadership development consulting and training firm, has been the Lead Facilitator of the Orientation Retreat since 1997 and has successfully launched 16 CLN classes. Larry is also an assistant professor in the Accelerated Learning Program at the Rochester Campus of Medaille College. His major areas of interest are in Strategic Planning, Organizational Development, Leadership and Team Building.

Pene is the principal of Hutton Associates, a multi-disciplined financial and organizational management consulting firm which specializes in providing organizational support for the not for profit agency. She is a member of the CLN class of 1997 and after graduation she served as a CLN board member. In 1999 she became CLN’s director, the position she still holds today.

Needless to say, these are two very special individuals that help make CLN what it is today, an organization that provides the tools to create better community leaders for Chautauqua County. Congratulations Larry and Pene.

For more information on CLN check out their website at or