Community leaders who have participated in COLA include:

  • Jan Allen | Executive Coach
  • Keith Bell | Former Chief Academic Office, Columbus City Schools
  • TaKeysha S. Cheney | Founder & CEO, The Women’s Book
  • Elfi Dibella | President, YWCA
  • Nichole Dunn | President & CEO, Women’s Fund of Central Ohio
  • Yaves Ellis | CEO, Sling Shot Media Group & Public Affairs Director, Radio One
  • Alex Fischer | President & CEO, Columbus Partnership
  • Dr. E Gordon Gee | President Emeritis, The Ohio State University
  • C. Robert Kidder | Past Chairman, Chrysler Group LLC & Past Lead Director of the Board, Morgan Stanley
  • Doug Kridler | President, The Columbus Foundation
  • Patrick Losinski | CEO, Columbus Metropolitan Library
  • Judge Alegnon Marbley | United States District Judge
  • Yvette McGee Brown | Former Ohio Supreme Court Justice
  • Dean Christine Poon | Dean, Fisher College of Business
  • Peyman X. Salehi | Market Director – Private Banking, JP Morgan Chase Bank
  • Robert H. Schottenstein | CEO, M/I Homes
  • Todd Tuney | CEO, CityYear Columbus
  • Ben Tyson | Senior Manager, Easton Community Foundation
  • Tammy Wharton | CEO, Girl Scouts of Ohio’s Heartland Council Inc.

“I have learned so much about my values, strengths and not only being a powerful leader, but also being an authentic one.  The speeches I have heard and the people I have met have truly taught me the importance of always abiding by my core principles.  Most importantly, I have learned the significance and power of diversity and the value of being attentive to everyone’s opinions.” – Vishal Nallangulargari, 2014 COLA Alumna



“Everyday there were one to four speakers telling us their story, how they made it, the obstacles, and the importance of passion, values, and happiness.  For what I got 1 day a week, I got for six days straight!  (It was AMAZING and I’m NOT Lying!)” – Polly Sy, Columbus Alternative High School, 2015 COLA Alumna



“The speakers here were incredibly inspiring and their storys about their success has given me a tremendous among of hope for what I can accomplish and contribute to the world.” – Samantha Ackley, 2014 COLA Alumna