About Us

Our Mission

Lead a business-education partnership to develop the leadership skills of Cedar Valley students.

Our Vision

Our students will be prepared to contribute to the success of the Cedar Valley community and its employers.

Our Core Values

Servant Leadership- We believe leadership is for everyone. Through modeling leadership, focusing on strengths, and creating opportunities for others, we empower people who will empower others.
Human Connection- We believe in the power of diverse relationships. Through fostering trust and being a resource for others, we develop sustainable partnerships.
Integrity- We believe authenticity is best and character matters. Through responsible use of community investments and leading by example, we build a reputation of positive impact.
Lifelong Learning- We believe education is an ongoing journey. Through investing in individual and community development, we equip people to change their own lives.
Facilitate Change- We believe challenges are opportunities to improve. Through a flexible response to change, we create better results that ripple into the community.

Leader Valley Staff

Nicole Hackman
Director of Fundraising and Communications


Hailee Merryman
Special Projects Assistant


Shantavia Parker


Melissa Reade
Executive Director


Leader Valley Executive Committee

Katie Hillyer
Wayne Communications

Gina Weekley
Waterloo Community School District

Gretchen Ogden
US Bank

Aaron Jarnagin
Pixel Labs

Kendra Richman
UnityPoint Health

Past Chair
Bryan Earnest
AMPERAGE Marketing & Fundraising

Leader Valley Council

De’Carlos Anderson
UNI Talent Search

Kelsey Burke

Cary Darrah
Grow Cedar Valley

Liz DeJoode
PDCM Insurance

Rob Green
City of Cedar Falls

Aaron Jarnagin
Pixel Labs

Emily Knutson
Hawkeye Community College

Shanlee McNally
RJ McElroy Trust

Tom Novotney
Cedar Valley Catholic Schools

Selvedina Nuhanovic
Vine Valley Real Estate

Dr. Andy Pattee
Cedar Falls Community Schools

Dr. Jared Smith
Waterloo Community Schools

Robert Wright
Waterloo Community Schools