LEAD graduates
Photo by Jordan Henderson

Sixteen Roadrunners have officially completed Metropolitan State University of Denver’s LEAD program, the largest cohort to date since its being developed by the Leadership and Organizational Engagement team in 2022.  

Alysha Rowzee, assistant director of Admissions Visits and Events and one of this semester’s cohort graduates, said she joined LEAD for a few reasons, mainly because she’s new to her leadership role and hopes to have a positive impact on her direct reports. 

“I am new to my career and even newer to supervision, and it is really important to me that I learn leadership skills to better serve my direct reports,” Rowzee said. “I have had such influential and kind supervisors at MSU Denver, and I want to pay that forward to my team now.” 

The program, which takes place each semester, allows participants to identify strengths and opportunities for development in leadership areas. 

Program outcomes:  

  • Identify leadership strengths and opportunities for development. 
  • Explain how participants  embody the MSU Denver mission and CADRE values, including a commitment to DEI, and learn how to align strategic goals.   
  • Develop core competencies and skills to build high-performing, engaged teams. 
  • Create trusting and meaningful relationships with fellow Roadrunners. 
  • Develop and present process-improvement projects that champion CADRE values.   
  • Celebrate the growth of themselves, other leaders and those they influence. 

“The program is customized to the needs of our MSU Denver community and includes universal best practices for leadership,” said Imani Morning, director of Engagement. “We take participants through a semesterlong journey of reflection, learning and practice, which grounds them in their leadership identity and examines the impact they have on their teams.” 

Congratulations to the graduates of this semester’s cohort: 

  • Tony Calhoun, interim director of data warehouse and representative, Business Intelligence 
  • Melissa Cleaver, director of Pathways to Possible, Classroom to Career Hub 
  • Araceli Cortez, senior talent management manager, Human Resources 
  • Matt Dickman, administrative specialist, C2 Hub 
  • Rebecca Dobbin, manager of travel and procurement, College of Letters, Arts and Sciences 
  • Megan Euler, production manager, Department of Theatre and Dance 
  • Hsiu-Ping Liu, professor of Biology and director of the Center for Advanced STEM Education and Biology 
  • Mike McCabe, executive director of the Office of the Bursar 
  • Blake Miller, manager of technical project management, Information Technology Services 
  • Mira Morton Luna, associate director of the Gina and Frank Day Health Institute 
  • Buffy Ribble, interim director of Data and Analytics, Strategy 
  • Alysha Rowzee, assistant director of Admissions Visits and Events 
  • Amanda Schwengel, assistant director of Photo and Video Production, University Communications and Marketing 
  • Zacary Tardiff, executive director of Corporate and Foundation Relations, University Advancement 
  • Tracy Verhasselt, program manager, Faculty Affairs 
  • Jie Yu, desktop support liaison supervisor, ITS 

Learn more

MSU Denver’s LEO team has several trainings for employees of all levels. Learn more below about the programs and how to register. 

  • GROW is a workshop series dedicated to supporting all employee levels, including faculty and staff members and student employees. Topics include leading with emotional intelligence; avoiding burnout: strategies for self-care; and listening to engage.  
  • LAUNCH is a three-day program primarily focused on faculty and staff members who are somewhat new to leadership roles. Participation in the entire series is required.  
  • LEAD aims to engage with University leaders who are committed to aligning their leadership styles with Pillar V of MSU Denver’s 2030 Strategic Plan. The sessions provide faculty and staff participants with tools to sharpen management skills to engage those they lead, facilitate change and develop healthy team culture.