ALF's primary vehicle for leadership development is the delivery of its Fellows Programs through its local chapters.
Each year, twenty to twenty-five men and women - proven leaders from all sectors - are selected in each chapter community to participate in the program. The program year begins with an orientation, and includes a series of monthly seminars such as dialogue, conflict management and resolution, ethics, vision and change, and emerging themes in leadership, as well as a weeklong wilderness experience in which each class faces the challenge of scaling a mountaintop. Conquering the mountain is a collective and individual victory that leads participants to tap into seldom-used inner resources in a way that transforms their perceptions of personal abilities, and strengthens and adds new dimensions to their visions of themselves and others and what, together, they can do.
ALF distinguishes itself from other leadership programs by creating an environment that builds trust among a broad cross section of individuals who are already established leaders in their respective fields. These leaders are in a unique position to collectively and collaboratively bring to bear the diverse perspectives, the intellectual capabilities, and the power and influence necessary to make good things happen in their communities.
Single Sector Programs
In addition to the Core Fellows Program offered in each ALF Chapter, since 2006 ALF-Houston has offered Single Sector Fellows Programs. The goal is to build relationships within a single sector of the community by getting class members to understand each others’ roles and perspectives better. Fellows are selected to represent the broad range of perspectives that exist within a single sector and are brought together to establish bonds of shared knowledge and trust so that they will be able to collaborate more effectively. The curriculum is essentially the same as in a general community class but the people gathered together are all focused on a single sector. These programs are offered on a rotating schedule by sector. To date programs have been offered in criminal justice, public education, healthcare, community development, and workforce development.
ALF-Memphis has offered sector classes in both criminal and juvenile justice. Other chapters have offered other programs by sector, including a Collaboration Laboratory in Juvenile Justice at ALF-Oregon and Innovation Networks at ALF-Silicon Valley both in Education and Urbanism.