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Julian Alvarez
Julian Alvarez

WESLACO, RGV – The application deadline to join the Rio Grande Valley Partnership’s second annual RGV Leadership Class is Friday, Aug. 14.

RGVP began accepting applications on June 8. An announcement on who the successful applicants are will be made via phone or email on Monday, August 31.

RGV Partnership President Julian Alvarez said at least two letters of recommendation are required to be submitted with the application and there are some questions on the application that need some thought.

Alvarez urged applicants not to wait until deadline to complete the application. Husband and wives cannot attend simultaneously, and candidates for political office may not apply, he pointed out.

“RGV Leadership offers emerging and current business and community leaders from throughout the region a unique opportunity to develop their personal and professional leadership skills and learn about issues affecting the Valley through a nine-month educational program that promotes learning, discussion and debate,” Alvarez said.

“RGV Leadership also creates opportunities for building relationships with other growing leaders from around the region and challenges them to look for solutions to the region’s most pressing issues.”

Alvarez said the program works much like other leadership programs sponsored by city chambers of commerce.

“RGV Leadership sets itself apart in that its complete focus is regional and specializes in bringing together people from throughout the entire Valley to look at issues and leadership through a wider lens,” Alvarez added.

The inaugural RGV Leadership Class was held in 2014-15. Twenty-five business and community leaders participated in nine monthly meetings on topics important to the region, such as water, economic development, security, government and tourism.

A driving force behind the RGV Leadership Class was former RGVP Chair Deborah Cordova. Cordova said the days of Valley cities working all alone are nearly history.

“Nearly every economic study out there – as well as the business community – tells us that regions must work well together to bring industry, create jobs and improve quality of life. The Partnership sees it as its role to prepare our emerging leaders by working together, focusing on issues with a regional lens and just simply getting to know each other,” Cordova said.