2020 Dean Announced

The Ottumwa Leadership Academy now has 134 graduates of the program and is looking forward to the next Academy year – bringing with it a new Dean for the 2019-2020 class.  John Van Utrecht will take this important lead role of Dean. This volunteer position collaborates with the Curriculum Committee of the Advisory Board and the Executive Director to review, evaluate and improve the curriculum for the year in addition to helping facilitate the monthly sessions.

Van Utrecht who is the Controller at John Deere Ottumwa Works received his Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Northern Iowa and earned his CPA and CMA certifications.  Van Utrecht started his career with John Deere in 2000 in Raleigh, North Carolina and has since worked in Moline, Illinois; Waterloo, Iowa; Olathe, Kansas; and Tampa, Florida.

You will find Van Utrecht serving the community in various capacities. He is an Elder, Growth Group leader, Mentor, and Financial Coach at The Bridge Church. Additionally you can find him teaching key “Financial Literacy” concepts each year in the Ottumwa Schools District, is on the Financial Review Committee of the Legacy Foundation, as well as being very involved volunteering with Ottumwa Leadership Academy as a Mentor, Alumni Association Committee member, and participating in Master Mind Groups and other activities.

Van Utrecht and his wife of 19 years have 2 daughters ages 14 and 12 and have served as foster parents.  Along with spending time with family, Van Utrecht enjoys being outside and growing giant pumpkins.

“I love Ottumwa.  This is home to me,” stated Van Utrecht.  “We have wonderful people, exciting ongoing changes, and the potential for a very bright future.  I believe that strong, structural, permanent change requires taking a long-term view.  It also requires a lot servant-minded leaders.  The Ottumwa Leadership Academy develops leaders for the future, with a focus on serving the community, and I’m excited to be a part of it.”

To be considered for next year’s class, those interested must fill out an application and submit it by the deadline.  In order to qualify for the Academy, those interested must live and/or work in Wapello County, fill out an application, and submit it by June 29, 2018. A tuition of $950 can either be paid by an individual or a sponsoring organization – typically where the participant works. “We are very fortunate to have 3 scholarships available for next year’s class for those who come from small organizations or nonprofits that don’t have funds in their budgets,” stated Hollie Tometich, Executive Director of Ottumwa Leadership Academy.  “We have the Andy Hansen Legacy Scholarship as well as 2 Alumni Association Scholarships.”