What We Do

"Lead New Jersey was born out of a tremendous commitment on the part of leaders in New Jersey to find a way of nurturing a mindset of the state’s well-being." – Doug Forrester, LNJ '90, President, Integrity Health


Lead New Jersey Fellows explore the State House and experience a maximum security prison...the streams of the Pinelands and the streets of Newark...a Camden school room and Jersey City’s port.

Lead New Jersey year-long monthly seminars probe today's problems and tomorrow's prospects with current leaders, to sharpen our knowledge and hone our own responses. Seminars take place around the state to provide participants with direct experience of the issues, and combine site visits, case studies, debates, and simulations with presentations from and conversations with a wide variety of policy and leadership experts in New Jersey.  Read more about the Issues

“It was in our Lead New Jersey Education Seminar.  We’d met with an urban school principal, experienced a charter school, and witnessed teens engaged in hands-on science projects at the State Aquarium.  Now a group of us Fellows were brainstorming over a flip chart, preparing our recommendations for expanding college preparation courses for a group of real school board members brought together to help us in this real-life exercise.  I suddenly realized that next to me were a venture capitalist, an Assistant State Attorney General, a county college president, and a foundation executive.  And I thought, nowhere else could I get this! ” --LNJ Fellow 


LNJ brings together individuals who are already leaders in their companies, organizations, communities, and professional fields. However, in our fast-paced, ever-changing world, even experienced leaders need to continue honing their skills and expanding their horizons. LNJ incorporates various leadership development tools such as the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator®, LIFO (Life Orientations), and Boundary Spanning Leadership into its seminars throughout the year, and continues to explore new leadership development training tools it can add to further enhance the program's value for Fellows and their employers. 

“My Myers-Briggs personality profile training was an “ah ha!” moment.  I couldn't understand why my work team wasn't clicking.  It was like they were all talking past one another, and while I could see it happening, I felt powerless to steer us in a better direction.  Now I see that ‘perceivers’ aren't disconnected, they’re trying out new ideas in their minds.  And ‘introverts’ also need time to study all facets before adding their two cents.  Practical management insights like these have helped me bring cohesion to our team and new purpose to our work!” -- LNJ Fellow



In addition to public policy education and leadership development, Fellows who have shared the experience of our seminar program over the last three decades have created a vibrant network of engaged civic leaders. As a Fellow, you gain access to a network of more than 1800 leaders from New Jersey’s most prominent companies, nonprofits, and government agencies. Fellowship and camaraderie are built not only within each class, but across all of the classes. A variety of networking opportunities are available throughout the year, both at LNJ-sponsored events and gatherings at some of the largest convenings in New Jersey, such as the League of Municipalities Conference and the New Jersey Chamber of Commerce’s annual “Walk to Washington.”

LNJ is dedicated to developing well-informed leaders, Fellows, who are prepared to cross boundaries between sectors, work effectively with people of all backgrounds, find common ground with those who may think differently about issues, and work in a spirit of shared commitment to our state’s success. Our network of Fellows is our state’s most valuable resource for professional connections and community service.

"I contact Lead NJ alum all the time whenever there’s an issue in New Jersey that I’m trying to address because they’re everywhere." - Preston Pinkett III, LNJ '93, President & CEO, City National Bank 



Participating in a Lead New Jersey (LNJ) class requires a shared commitment of time, attention, and finances from both the Fellow and his or her employer. However, the benefits reaped by the individual and their company/organization are priceless. 

LNJ plans to return to its traditional calendar year schedule (January - December) for 2023, with two-day seminars approximately once per month and graduation in December. Virtual sessions via Zoom will be included as part of some seminars. The proposed 2023 schedule is available on the "Apply to LNJ" page. 

Lead New Jersey is a tuition-based program for the seminar year, which includes all expenses except overnight hotel accommodations. Scholarship assistance for eligible nonprofit and government applicants may be available on a case by case basis. Applicants are considered on a rolling basis beginning in September. All applicants must fill out the form in it's entirety and include a $100.00. application fee. Tuition for the 2023 class is $6,500.  A deposit of $1,500 is required upon acceptance, with the tuition balance due by March 31st, 2023 

Please contact LNJ Vice President Jen Bredehoft at [email protected] with any questions regarding the 2023 class and application process.