Harvesting a fresh crop of business and civic pioneers is pivotal for Cincinnati’s future.

With a reputation for crafting leaders, the Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber created two more platforms earlier this year that further enforce its legacy.

CincyNext, designed as professional development for young professionals, and Leadership Action, an extension of Leadership Cincinnati that focuses on a single community project, have been added to the chamber’s list of prestigious leadership programs.

Dan Hurley, director of Leadership Cincinnati and Cincy Magazine columnist, has directed the program for six years and watched as the Chamber’s suite of leaderships programs increased from 48 to nearly 250.

“No one else in the country has a fully developed leadership platform like we do,” says Hurley. “[In Cincinnati] there is a real interest in having an impact and moving the business needle forward.”

Like Leadership Cincinnati, Hurley will direct Leadership Action. The program will feature a highly motivated team of seasoned leaders from various business organizations. For the inaugural class, Leadership Action, with help from civic and business leaders, will focus on workforce development in the community.

“This is an important issue, and getting people into the workforce pipeline is something our at-large community needs to improve upon,” says Hurley. “We need to develop a plan that reaches out to the people outside [the workforce] and get them involved.”

While a major component of Leadership Cincinnati involves a classroom setting, Hurley says Leadership Action revolves around the hands-on experience.

“Adults learn by doing things, not by being told,” he says.

He cites past Leadership Cincinnati projects like Crayons to Computers, the Cincinnati Free Pharmacy and Preschool Promise as model programs.

For emerging career professionals, CincyNext offers an arena to polish personal and professional skills. Like C-Change, CincyNext is part of the Chamber’s HYPE (Harnessing Young Professional Energy) program.

Whereas C-Change engages professionals in their 30s and early 40s, CincyNext provides younger professionals in their early to late 20s with meaningful growth opportunities. Curriculum topics include personal branding, effective communication, public speaking, conflict resolution and more.

“What we have noticed is that leaders are emerging earlier in their careers than ever before and CincyNext will engage them at a time in their lives where other programs don’t,” says Julie Bernzott, manager of HYPE. “Organizations are no longer waiting until later in a person’s career to invest in their future, and the need for CincyNext speaks to that.”

As the nation’s fifth largest Chamber of Commerce, the Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber has more than 5,000 members, six leadership programs and a host of amenities for all professionals. Visit cincinnatichamber.com for more details.

For more information on Leadership Action, contact Dan Hurley at dhurley@cincinnatichamber.com. For more information on CincyNext, email Julie Bernzott at jbernzott@cincinnatichamber.com.