Ottumwa Leadership Academy

OLA Graduation 2014

The Ottumwa Leadership Academy is a 10-month program that strives to educate, empower, encourage, and engage future leaders to create positive change in our community, government and businesses.


OLA-Logo“I chose to participate in OLA not only to become a better leader for myself personally, but also in the community, and to learn the things I can do to make Ottumwa a better place to live. I want to help make Ottumwa grow into something my children want to stay in, not move away from.” Brad Barnes, Audit Manager, Anderson, Larkin & Co. Our curriculum provides a broad review of the various areas that community leaders face every day such as quality of life, government, public relations, human and community services, education, and business, industry and agriculture.

Leadership development is also an integral part of the curriculum allowing the participants to assess their current leadership path and enhance their skills and leadership style. Please click to learn about the Academy Curriculum and Graduation Requirements.

The Academy Leadership Team

The Dean for the 2014-2015 class is Sue Meadows.  Meadows was Raised in Williamsburg, Virginia and moved to Ottumwa in 1976, fully intending to return to Virginia after living in the Midwest for a few years, but loved the community and felt so warmly welcomed that she decided to stay here and raise her family with her husband Richard, a District Court Judge.  Sue graduated from James Madison University in Virginia with a Masters Degree in Education and earned an Administrative Certification from Drake University. She has worked at IHCC, William Penn University, Great Prairie AEA, and the Ottumwa Community School District. Meadows was Principal at Douma School for 3 years and Executive Director of Curriculum and Instruction for 16 years for the OCSD. She developed and implemented the Community Advisory for School Improvement and Educational Equity before retiring from 2010.  “We are so pleased that Sue has accepted the role of Dean for our 2014-2015 Academy class,” stated Hollie Tometich, Executive Director.  “Along with her background in Education and curriculum, she brings her passion for community and leadership development that will benefit next year’s class.”

Members of the  Ottumwa Leadership Academy Advisory Board include: Martin Cody, Tom Lazio, Brad Little, Natalie Bolin, Jane Martin and Tom Rubel.

Ottumwa Leadership Academy is a 10-month, tuition-based academy that provides participants with a detailed over-view of Ottumwa and Wapello County with targeted leadership development strategies and skill development. With the mission to develop effective leaders for the betterment of our community, the organization strives to educate, empower, encourage and engage its participants in civic and community service and leadership.

The Ottumwa Leadership Academy building is located at 113 E. Main Street (previously known as the Bookin Building). In keeping with the Legacy Foundation’s strategic focus of revitalization, this older, downtown building was purchased and renovated to house the Academy.

In order to be considered for acceptance into next year’s class, please fill out the O L A Application 2016 and return it to the OLA office by July 31, 2015. Please call Hollie Tometich, Executive Director at (641) 684-6221 or visit the Ottumwa Leadership Academy website at  if you have further questions, or are interested in scholarship or sponsorship opportunities.

Click here for a printable version of the Ottumwa Leadership Academy brochure.