2024 Leadership Academy

Are you interested in fostering future leaders in your organization? Are you an existing leader looking to enhance your leadership techniques? Are you a new long term care professional looking to develop your leadership skills? Do you wish to become a successful and engaging leader? Are you a provider wanting to improve your facility culture while recruiting & retaining quality staff? Have you worked in long term care for decades and believe you know it all when it comes to effective leadership?

If you answered “Yes” to any of these questions, then the 2024 Leadership Academy is the perfect program for you! 

At its most fundamental level, leadership is about the ability to make a decision. Since we all make hundreds of decisions each day, everyone has leadership characteristics. Just having these characteristics does not mean that we are consistently good at exercising them.  Like a muscle, leadership strength is developed through deliberate focus on the skills and behaviors that build leadership acumen. As your self-awareness of leadership matures, your impact and potential will grow.

WHCA/WiCAL has designed this Leadership Academy for the unique needs and demands of long term care professionals. Individuals at any stage of their career are invited to join this cohort-based model for an immersive experience unlike other training and development opportunities previously experienced. You and your peers will engage in the exploration of fundamental & advanced leadership skills and behaviors, and then apply your learning in the workplace as “homework”. In addition to growing confidence, personal efficiency and effectiveness will emerge. Enrollment is open to all member facility staff & leadership; we also extend the invitation to partners and their staff. Individuals who have “heard it all” when it comes to leadership training, are strongly encouraged to attend the Academy!

The need for strong leadership in long term care has never been greater. We have a choice: we can hope that someone else will step in to fill the void and solve the problems that hinder our performance – OR – we take responsibility for our own future and narrow the gap between our performance and personal potential. Leadership is a choice! 

Registration for the 2024 Leadership Academy is Closed!

2024 ACADEMY DATES: June 18, July 24, August 21, September 18, and October 16. Graduation and recognition of accomplishments will be on Thursday, October 24 during the 2024 Fall Convention & Expo Awards Ceremony, at the Osthoff Resort in Elkhart Lake.

LOCATION: Holiday Inn Pewaukee – Milwaukee West, in the Lake Pewaukee and Okauchee rooms. A room rate of $119 has been extended to academy attendees.

TUITION/ENROLLMENT: $1,750 for the entire program; this includes the curriculum & education, breakfast/lunch during each session, indefinite access the Leadership Academy archives, tools, and recourses. Additionally, this program is approved for continuing education through NAB. **All registrations received before May 17, 2024 will automatically receive a $250 scholarship, which brings the cost of the academy down to $1,500**

This program has been approved for Continuing Education for 30 total participant hours by NAB/NCERS—Approval #20250617-30-A103860-IN. Session attendance is validated and you must attend every session to earn the CEs offered for this program.

Email Jena Jackson if you have any questions regarding the Leadership Academy!

Academy Benefits


  • Measurable changes in individual leadership capability and personal effectiveness
  • Broader, more skilled pool of internal candidates for leadership positions, as well as an enhanced ability to retain high potential employees and a committed workforce
  • Improved relationships and personal networks that strengthen the organization’s capacity to work cross-functionally on important projects, initiatives, and requirements
  • More collaborative behavior that supplants competitive behavior resulting in more successful outcomes for residents, their families, and other stakeholders
  • Service innovation projects designed to improve current operations and/or strengthen the facility’s ability to thrive in an ever-changing environment
  • All 2024 Leadership Academy participants will graduate and be honored during the Awards Luncheon on October 24, 2024 at the Osthoff Resort in Elkhart Lake.

Approach & Curriculum


Leadership is a complex competency which requires practice and development. This is precisely why Leadership Academy is a series of courses taught over a 6-month period and not just one week. We want participants to reflect on what they have learned, try it out and come back to discuss what they have learned. Actual lecture during the courses selected is limited because we want a majority of the class time to be taken up with discussion, exercises, and case study analysis. We also stress direct application to work situations in all academy exercises and discussions. Case studies, which are developed for each course, are created using the ideas of academy work teams. These teams are charged with generating problem scenarios that are relevant and ongoing for the Academy.

Leadership involves more than what you say; it’s about what you do. To keep aligned with this principle, the WHCA/WiCAL Academy begins with a leadership self-assessment designed to provide feedback in four key leadership practice areas. Participants are asked to develop a leadership goal early in the Academy. Participants report back during each session about the progress and challenges encountered in reaching their goals. Our focus in the Academy is on taking action, trying new things and pushing you to reach your personal potential, not just talking about leadership.


The Leadership Academy is comprised of five (5) separate courses, each focused on a different aspect of becoming an effective leader. Each course is a full day of education, interaction, and discussion, with built-in opportunities for action learning and time to address actual long term care issues, concerns, and problems.

WHCA/WiCAL Leadership Academy: What You Can Expect

Session 1: Strengthening Your Practice of Leadership

  • You will assess your current leadership strengths and opportunities to grow
  • You will better understand when to manage and when to lead when facing a problem

Homework Challenge:  Develop a new leadership habit to strengthen your effectiveness as a leader

Session 2: Leading Innovation and Change

  • You will develop new problem-solving skills involving creativity/design thinking
  • You will learn new tools and approaches for implementing and effecting change in complex environments

Homework Challenge:  Initiate an innovation or change project at your facility that will improve a process, improve employee engagement or impact resident satisfaction

Session 3: The Leader as a Master Communicator

  • You will how common behaviors interfere with effective communication
  • You will learn how to use the power of stories to communicate with legislators

Homework Challenge:  Apply your learning to have a candid conversation back at the facility with someone who is holding back the team

Session 4: Leading High Performing Teams

  • Learn how to motivate your team to excel every day
  • Learn how to give every day feedback that sticks

Homework Challenge:  Create a User Manual so team members know what you expect when they are working with you

Session 5: Leading a Focus on the Future

  • Learn the principles of effective decision making and setting priorities
  • Discover methods of aligning your team around goals that matter

Homework Challenge:  Demonstrate the leadership acumen you have developed through the academy by presenting your project story in a concise and impactful way

Participant Expectations


Participants are expected to attend all academy sessions and complete assignments provided at each. Participants will also be expected to complete a performance improvement project for their facility. Discussion of what kind of facility improvement project and how to manage it will take place and time will be allocated for discussing projects at each session.



“The Leadership Academy is one of the best leadership classes I have ever been a part of. I love that all the members of the academy are Wisconsin long-term healthcare providers so we are able to discuss our struggles and strategies as a very specified small group. The presenters seem invested in each of us individually and are ready to provide advice and guidance. I really look forward to attending the sessions every month!” Lori Post, LNHA

“The academy has helped me have a healthier view of failure – using it as a tool for success rather than something to fear or something that stops me from implementing change. Failure is inevitable so we must use it to learn from.” Jennifer Burklund, NHA Executive Director

Academy Faculty


Brett Remington: Brett Remington is a true blue rock star at Blue Rock WI. Brett’s focus on enterprise-based performance improvement considers all the factors that drive outcomes in complex environments in order to achieve meaningful and sustained improvement. These include leadership effectiveness, organizational governance, strategy development and deployment, customer and market knowledge, information and knowledge management, work systems design, change management strategies and employee well-being, business process design and continuous improvement methods.



Jena Jackson: WHCA/WiCAL’s Vice President of Business Development has facilitated the Academy since 2019. Jena brings practical leadership experience and outside of the box ideas to the cohort, while reinforcing the curriculum developed by Brett. Jena is the cohort liaison and provides encouragement to the cohort for the duration of the academy. She supports the cohort during the Academy and continues that support after the program has concluded.



Thank You to the 2024 Leadership Academy Sponsors

BCS logoMartin Bros. logoM3 Insurance Logo