September 2012

September 2012: Our Town

Author: Special To C2 Magazine

A new non-profit organization has been formed to foster service leadership among island businesses. The Center for Service Leadership began as a seed of an idea, sparked by IBM’s Centennial Celebration of Service, held in 2011, a yearlong global volunteer initiative undertaken by IBM employees, retirees, families and friends.

The project was launched by Hilton Head resident and IBM retiree Jack Wilson, who worked for IBM for over 25 years, and retains strong ties to the organization. This long-time islander, retired U.S. Navy Captain, businessman, author and career consultant developed a proposal to IBM for a leadership enterprise that would implement a philosophy of service excellence on Hilton Head Island and throughout the Lowcountry.

As a 2004 graduate of Leadership Hilton Head-Bluffton and chairman of its alumni committee, Wilson previously managed the Chamber of Commerce’s Executive Leadership Series in 2008-9.

The project’s mission is to promote a culture of service excellence among Lowcountry organizations in order to stimulate regional economic growth. Wilson has formed an informal advisory board comprised of 15 of the Lowcountry’s top executives and service-minded leaders.

Currently, three phases are planned by the organization, the first of which is a three-part lecture series, beginning September 2012, to acquaint the community with the concept of service leadership. The lecture series will feature prominent speakers from across the country from organizations with top service-related cultures.

Luncheon event: You are invited
The first speaking engagement will be held in partnership with the Hilton Head Island-Bluffton Chamber of Commerce at a September 14 luncheon on Hilton Head Island, featuring former Disney executive Jody Dreyer as guest speaker. Dreyer, a resident of Los Angeles, recently served as senior vice president at Walt Disney Motion Pictures and earlier at Disney Worldwide Outreach.

The luncheon will be held at the Country Club of Hilton Head and is the first in a series of three events planned by the Center for Service Leadership. The purpose of the series is to introduce the community to the concept, principles and practices of service leadership and ways to promote a culture of service excellence in both business and nonprofit organizations.

Attendance at the luncheon event is open to the public, including business owners, nonprofit leaders, and alumni of the Beaufort and HHI-Bluffton Leadership Associations.

Cost of the luncheon is $20 per person or $200 for a table of 10. Reservations may be made by logging on to the Chamber of Commerce website at hiltonheadchamber.org. Payments may also be mailed to the Center for Service Leadership, 301 Central Avenue, Suite 200, HHI, SC 29926.

The subsequent two phases of the CSL initiative, planned for 2013 and 2014, will focus on direct education and training for both business and non-profit organizations, with planned technology-based delivery. Awards and certifications will be given to organizations that apply service leadership training and demonstrate service excellence in their day-to-day operations.

“We are eager to build a widespread reputation for service excellence that will bring new people, new businesses, and new economic vitality to the Lowcountry,” Wilson said.

For more information on the Center for Service Leadership, messages may be directed to Jack Wilson atctrservldr@gmail.com. Individuals or groups interested in joining the effort may contact operations executive Raymond Wenig at (843) 342-9642 or e-mail rpwenig@gmail.com

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