In the News

Class of 2016 Experiences Health and Human Services

LEONARDTOWN, Md. – April 19, 2016: On March 3, 2016, the Leadership Southern Maryland (LSM) Class of 2016 participated in the fifth of nine educational sessions – Housing and Human Services – sponsored by the Cherry Cove Group. The day began with an introduction and welcome by Executive Director Helen Wernecke and Lead Advocate Christina Payne LSM ’15 at the Bay District Fire Department in Lexington Park, Maryland. The class was educated on the Governor Hogan’s four goal areas of impact in Southern Maryland for children and families by Jennifer Moreland, Calvert County Family Network coordinator, followed by an update on the behavioral/mental health concerns and support of Southern Maryland by Karen Carloni, executive director, Southern Maryland Community Network. Sandy McGraw from Charles County then gave an educational presentation on affordable housing in Southern Maryland.

Chris Longmore LSM’09, attorney and partner, Dugan, McKissick & Longmore, led the lunchtime activity and discussion on how we, as leaders, can help with housing and human services issues in our own communities. Afterward, Reverend Walt Nilsson LSM’15offered a presentation on religious outreach and asset-based community development; HeartFELT by certified lay minister Little Jack Woodford, and testimonials by citizens who have utilized the human services of the Three Oaks Center.   Reverend Meredith Wilkins-Arnold facilitated a discussion on how business and faith communities come together to build a better community. The day ended with a presentation by session sponsor Cathy Meyers, executive director for the Center for Children, on how intertwined childhood experiences, poverty, mental health, and homelessness can be, followed by an exercise and discussion on adverse childhood experiences affecting one’s ability to thrive.

The class wrapped up their day with a networking and recruitment event that evening hosted by LSM’s Class of 2014 alumni at Elements Eatery and Mixology in Lexington Park, Maryland. Class participants were able to meet and interact with LSM alumni, more than 240 strong, potential candidates for the Class of 2017 as well as Leadership Maryland alumni living in the Southern Maryland region.

Leadership Southern Maryland is designed and dedicated to educate and inspire a diverse group of current and emerging leaders to create collaborations and partnerships to impact the community needs of Calvert, Charles, and St. Mary’s counties and incorporates a cross-section of the region to include diversity of geographic location, profession, ethnicity and gender. Leadership Southern Maryland is a nine-month tuition-based program.

Leadership Southern Maryland is a 501(c)(3) organization by the Internal Revenue Service (EIN#26-2989381). Contributions are deductible as charitable contributions to the extent permitted by law.

For more information, please contact the Helen Mattingly Wernecke, Executive Director Leadership Southern Maryland, 240-725-5469 via email or visit