Gratitude, inspiration and giving back were the messages of the evening as the Leadership McKinney Class of 2013 graduated from the McKinney Chamber of Commerce’s nationally recognized leadership development program. A full house of family, friends, program alumni and community leaders joined the 25 class members to celebrate their accomplishment as they joined the elite alumni network, now 484 strong.

For the past 10 months, class members immersed themselves in McKinney as they had never done before. Dialoguing with community leaders and futurist Carolyn Corbin, they were given the tools to prepare themselves and their community for global competiveness.

Sara Thomas, Class of 1997 and Senior Vice President at Square One Mortgage, a Division of Independent Bank, was the class-chosen keynote speaker. Sara reflected on her experiences and encouraged the graduates to use what they learned.

“I fully believe in the program and its ability to change a person’s perspective and future,” Sara said, “if they are willing to embrace that change.”

Class representative Patrick Cloutier, Legacy Planning Group, spoke of gratitude and using inspiration as the fuel for moving forward to do great things. Patrick has already taken that next forward step as a new Volunteer McKinney Center board member. The Class of 2013 also presented the Chamber with a plaque commemorating their 25th Anniversary class.

The evening closed by honoring Corbin, President of the Center for the 21st Century, who has served as facilitator during the past nine years. Carolyn’s love of learning will now be shared with a future class member through the new Carolyn Corbin Leadership McKinney Scholarship, set up by an anonymous program alumnus through the Leadership Alumni Network.

Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. ... Margaret Mead


Congratulations to the Class of 2013!

Akingbade Akinfenwa • Zoalert

Lisa Bourassa • Algebra Tutor

Scott Brewer • City of McKinney

Patrick Cloutier • Legacy Planning Group

Jennifer Dexter • LegacyTexas Bank

Brad Donovan • Encore Wire Corporation

Amy Evans • Collin College

Jan Furtick • The Payton Group

Jeremiah Hammer • Sustainable Ventures

Wendy Hatfield • Independent Bank

David Hoffman • HNTB Corporation

Brandon Johnson • First United Bank & Trust

Jodi Ann LaFreniere Ray • McKinney Chamber of Commerce

Mike Livezey • Cutter Aviation

Sarah Marshall • Wells Fargo Advisors

Joseph Massey • Prosperity Bank

Alan McDonald • Viewpoint Bank

Keith Nicholson • Encore Wire Corporation

Francisco “Harvey” Oaxaca • McKinney Independent School District

Scott Peek • Baylor Medical Center at McKinney

Melanie Perkins • Junior League of Collin County

Cindy Peters • Republic Title

Teresa Sheffield • McKinney Family YMCA

Janay Tieken • City of McKinney

John Walker • Medical Center of McKinney

Each year individuals representing the diversity of McKinney are selected to participate in the Leadership McKinney program. Graduates then go on to work as powerful change agents for McKinney and the region. To apply, visit Completed applications must be submitted to the Leadership Program Director at the Chamber office no later than 5 p.m. on Friday, June 21. Candidates will be notified of their selection status in July, and the program begins with an orientation on Thursday, Aug. 8.

For more information about the Leadership McKinney program, contact Deb Fitzgerald at the McKinney Chamber of Commerce at 972-542-0163 or