2022 CEO Retreat

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Oakwood Resort

702 East Lake View Road

Syracuse, IN 46567

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2022 CEO Retreat

About this event


This gathering of Elkhart County nonprofit leaders is intended to connect and recharge those leading organizations that serve our community.

The Learning Center offers this free two-day session to care for those who provide so much for others, including their staff and those they serve. All meals, lodging and expenses are covered for those who lead Elkhart County nonprofits or nonprofits that serve Elkhart County through The Learning Center of the Community Foundation of Elkhart County.

Register now to save your spot at this great event at Oakwood Resort, 702 E Lake View Rd, Syracuse, Indiana.


Wednesday, August 24

8 to 9 a.m. — Registration and Breakfast

9 to 9:30 a.m. — Introduction activity by CFEC staff

9:30 a.m. to noon — “Proactive change” by keynote speaker Darrell “Flash” Gordon, including time for small group activities and discussions

Noon to 1 p.m. — Lunch and room check-in

1 to 3 p.m. — “Creating time for Connections” with Julie Cotton, Next Level Improv, and Ritch Hochstetler, ULEAD

3 to 5 p.m. — Relaxation activities, including massages, kayaking and walking

6 to 8 p.m. — Dinner cruise

8 to 10 p.m. — Fireside time and sharing of talents

Thursday, August 25

8 to 9 a.m. — Breakfast

9 a.m. to noon — “Five Dysfunctions” session by Darrell “Flash” Gordon

Noon to 1 p.m. — Lunch

1 to 1:30 p.m. — “Coaching: What It Is and What It Is Not” by Mike Garty

1:30 to 3 p.m. — CFEC staff updates

3 pm. — Dismissal


Darrell Gordon

Darrell Gordon was a former starting outside linebacker on the 1988 National Championship Notre Dame Football Team. In addition to the 1988 National championship Fiesta Bowl, Darrell played in the 1989 Hula Bowl Football all-star game with prominent NFL athletes including Deion Sanders, Derek Thomas and Troy Aikman. Darrell’s accomplishments on the gridiron can only be matched by his accomplishments off the field.

Darrell earned a Bachelors degree in Economics and Business and a Master’s degree of Science in Administration from Notre Dame, a Juris Doctorate from Northern Kentucky University’s Chase College of Law, a Certification in Fund Raising Management (CFRM) from Indiana University School of Philanthropy, and Strategic Perspective in Nonprofit Management from Harvard Business School Executive Education Program. He has won numerous awards and honors in his career.

Since 2001, Darrell has served as Chief Executive Officer of a multi-million-dollar youth organization. Before that he served as an adjunct Sports Law Professor for the graduate school at Ball State University and worked for the NCAA for five years in their legislative and student athlete advisory department. Darrell also serves as a national public speaker on the topics of Character Development, Diversity Training, Leadership Empowerment for Change. In September 2018, Darrell became an author when his first book hit the shelves entitled, “Change Does Not Occur In A Flash.”

Julie Cotton

When Julie Cotton was 9 years old, a troupe of touring actors inspired her to want to follow their path. Twelve years later, she worked for THAT company and toured with them for 5 seasons bringing theater arts into the lives and minds of youth all over the Southwest. Her vision is to inspire people to DREAM and PLAY again, specifically by putting practical tools into their hands, hearts and minds that connect them directly to their most creative inner self. Her primary tool for doing this is improv theater.

Rich Hochstetler

Ritch Hochstetler has created, innovated, and facilitated training experiences for students, educators, youth workers, nonprofit and corporate teams for over 30 years. As an aspiring mystic and servant leader, Ritch thrives on engaging individuals and teams in playful exploration, learning, and growth that leads to dynamic change. When Ritch isn’t dreaming up new ways to stretch people’s comfort zones, he loves to engage in adventures with his grandchildren, paddle a kayak, and write songs accompanied by a vintage Martin guitar. Ritch is a graduate of Goshen College and Fuller Seminary, with additional certifications in Talent Optimization, Appreciative Inquiry, True Colors Personality Temperament, and Servant Leadership.

Michael Garty

Michael Garty has demonstrated history of working in the management/leadership development consulting industry. He is skilled in Nonprofit Organizations, Coaching, Crisis Intervention, Clinical Supervision, and Conflict Resolution. He is a strong business development professional with a Master of Arts (MA) focused in Mental Health Counseling/Counselor from Asbury Theological Seminary.

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