Broadening Authentic Leadership: Student Action with Farmworkers

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For the first case study in our What’s Working in Rural series, we examine how rural-serving organizations can effectively welcome and truly empower leaders from all backgrounds.

An innovator on this question is Student Action with Farmworkers (SAF), a North Carolina–based nonprofit organization whose mission is to bring students and farmworkers together to learn about each other’s lives, share resources and skills, improve conditions for farmworkers, and build diverse coalitions working for social change.

In the case study, SAF shares how their board development work is grounded in four specific practices that, together, are intended to create an inclusive body in which all members can bring their authentic selves and experiences to leadership.

  • Value What Everyone Brings: Board Matrix
  • Share Knowledge and Experiences: Skillsharing and Training
  • Support Each Other: Board Buddies
  • Foster an Atmosphere of Conviviality: Sharing Activities and Stories

Download the case study for more details and four tips for putting this practice to work.


Aspen CSG’s consultant Rebecca Huenink led the writing process for our What’s Working in Rural series.

Aspen Institute Community Strategies Group
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