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Leadership Compendium

What is leadership? Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary defines Leadership as, “1. The office or position of a leader; 2. [the] capacity to lead; and 3. The act or an instance of leading.” Servant Leadership as coined by Robert K. Greenleaf in an essay on the topic published in 1970 defines this concept as, “The servant leader is servant first… It begins with the natural feeling that one wants to serve first. Then conscious choice brings one to aspire to lead.”

Within the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary, we have many leaders with a multitude of backgrounds from an array of professions that bring a wealth of talent and experience not often seen in a volunteer organization. We have small and large business owners, prior military, prior law enforcement, lawyers, doctors, technicians of varying types, captains of industry, educators, students and returning students, pilots, and ship masters so forth and so on. There is so much talent currently harnessed and so much more yet to be unleashed.

In light of the recognition of this vein of untapped talent, this Leadership Compendium is put together as a one stop resource to aid any and all who wish to undertake a leadership role be it Appointed or Elected and use this guide as a map to navigate the tasks to aid them in not only assuming a leadership role, but through the training that is available, become learned leaders. Many of the task requirements may seem daunting. Believe me it is not. Just as Rome what not built in a day, nor is a leader made. The tools in this guide are there to help you learn how to not only become a leader but how to become a servant leader with all the tools to become an exceptional and learned leader. We need to cultivate the future leadership of the Auxiliary if we are to continue to thrive as an organization.

This guide is open to all regardless of how new to the program they may be or how much longevity they may have. A previous National Commodore, COMO Alex Malewski once said while he was a District Captain, “The last thing we did as volunteers was to volunteer. Once we volunteered, we obligated ourselves to do something!” This was as much a mission statement to get members involved in the various Auxiliary programs, but I have found that it also applies to involving ourselves in becoming active in assuming roles of leadership as well. New people bring new ideas and a fresh way of looking at things as well as accomplishing goals. As great as most of our leaders may be, we all know there is an untapped pool of potential leaders who just need a subtle push, some direction and some inspiration to step into the breach to assume a leadership role. If you dare, if you like and want a challenge, if you don’t know how to get involved but want to, then this guide is for you. It is my hope that this guide answers your questions and gets you both motivated and inspired to get involved and gives you some direction on how to do just that… become our next, best and brightest servant leader.

~ COMO David G. Porter, IPANCO: Diversity & Inclusion Directorate, Special Projects Officer