CNE’s Emerging Leaders Academy is a facilitated eight-month peer learning program that aims to strengthen a new generation of nonprofit leaders.

The Emerging Leaders Academy consists of facilitated, small group sessions and one-on-one coaching sessions. The program includes:

  • Specially designed activities that develop participants sense of themselves as leaders and help them create practical plans for continued professional development.
  • Curated readings and videos that create a basis for discussion during group sessions, while the program facilitator ensures that sessions provide generous time for individual sharing and troubleshooting.
  • One-on-one sessions with professional coaches that enhance participants’ learning experiences.


“I feel like I came in one person and left someone totally different. My confidence has soared and I now have a fantastic network of leaders to continue working with. Thank you so much for the opportunity.”

Former Emerging Leaders Participant

“The Emerging Leaders Circle has provided me with the skills, confidence, support network, and tools to move forward into the next stage of my career. I am grateful for our facilitator, my peers in the circle, my assigned coach, and the accountability of this program that have pushed me to ask hard questions of myself. I’m starting to feel like I have some answers!”

Elise Cruz, former Emerging Leaders Participant

“This was an absolutely invaluable experience. I have never had this much confidence in my personal and professional life. My coach was extremely helpful in thinking through my vision. The facilitator and group members were a wonderful source of support.”

Former Emerging Leaders Participant

Program Content

Group sessions and individual coaching session focus on developing leadership skills in the following areas:

  • Knowing yourself
  • Building a vision
  • Maximizing your values at work
  • Building strategic relationships
  • Making sense of experience
  • Challenging yourself

Group sessions take place in-person in Charlottesville, VA.


The cost for participation is $1,000 for CNE members.

CNE offers limited need-based scholarships. Scholarship applications are solicited and evaluated on an individual basis after participants have been selected. Contact Brian Ullman to learn more.

Program Schedule 2024-2025

Emerging Leaders Academy will meet monthly for two hours over the course of eight months from September through April, and it includes five hours of coaching sessions. Applicants to the Emerging Leaders Academy should keep in mind the time commitment of meeting monthly for two hours. Meetings will be held on Thursdays from 9-11 am on the following dates:

  • Thursday, September 12, 2024
  • Thursday, October 10, 2024
  • Thursday, November 14, 2024
  • Thursday, December 12, 2024
  • Thursday, January 9, 2025
  • Thursday, February 13, 2025
  • Thursday, March 13, 2025
  • Thursday, April 10, 2025

Applications will be accepted through July 10, 2024. (The formal deadline has passed, but we will continue to accept applications for a limited time.)

*This program is available only to CNE Members.
Not a member? Join today.


Contact Senior Manager of Learning & Impact, Brian Ullman.