Leadership Excellence Awards

Leadership Palm Beach County’s Leadership Excellence Award recognizes exceptional Leadership Engage (Adult) Program graduates who make significant contributions to improve our community. The Leadership Excellence Award celebrates individuals who are active examples of the vision, and mission, of Leadership Palm Beach County; recipients aspire to connect, collaborate, and change.

We accept nominations of Alumni by Alumni each year. The nominations are reviewed by a confidential selection committee, made up of a diverse group of alumni. This selection committee selects a small group of finalists, who will be announced ahead of time, and one recipient, who will be announced at our Leadership Celebration event in May. Our standing president also has the prerogative to award the President's Award to an outstanding alumni of their choice. 

2024 Leadership Palm Beach County LEA Nominees



            LEA Award Recipient: Maria G. Marino (2010)

            President's Award: Barry S. Berg (1985)


            Private: Michelle Diffenderfer (2000) 

            Public: Chelsea Reed (2020) 

            Nonprofit: James Gavrilos (2009) 

            President's Award: Jessica Cecere (2000)


            Private: Stephen Basore (2019) 

            Public: Dorritt Miller (2006) 

            Nonprofit: Brian Edwards (2005) 

            President's Award: Renee E. Layman (2010)


            Private: Rita Barreto (1987) 

            Public: Erica Whitfield (2014) 

            Nonprofit: Laurie George (2003) 

            President's Award: Sally D. Chester (1987)


            Private: Kimberly Lea (2016) 

            Public: Lt. Patricia Brown (2013) 

            Nonprofit: Kate Watt (2018) 

            President's Award: Victoria Chouris (2010)


            Private: Eddie Stephens (2015) 

            Public: Senator Bobby Powell, Jr. (2010) 

            Nonprofit: Owen O'Neill (2014) 

            President's Award: Eric Hopkins (1995)


            Private: Frank Compiani (1991) 

            Public: Priscilla Taylor (1995) 

            Nonprofit: Dr. Robert Rease (2016) 

            President's Award: Dari Bowman (1988)

2016   Roberta "Robi" Jurney (2010)

2015   Michele Poole (2014)

2014   Jim Sugarman (1995)

2013   Patrick McNamara (2008)

2012   Eric Hopkins (1995)

2011   Rev. Pam Cahoon (1989)

2010   David Goodlett (1988)

2009   Wendy Sartory Link (1998)

2008   Sharon Bock (2000)

2007   David Baker (1989)

2006   Gale Howden (1986)

2005   Don Chester (1986)

Nominations for the 2024 Leadership Excellence Award have closed.