Northwest School Division Leadership Academy
“You don’t have to have a title and you don’t have to have a name on the office door. The opportunities to lead are in front of you all the time.”
As the first director of the Northwest School Division Leadership Academy from 2006 to 2016, Don Wheler advanced a world-class model of leadership development for hundreds of young Canadians. Mr. Wheler partnered with Roy Group in 2007 to set the tone for the newly created Academy, beginning with creating a sense of significance and possibility among these promising young people. Students, principals, vice-principals and “Academy champions” gathered on a regular basis to learn the tools and philosophies of leadership through The Leader’s Discipline™, Opportunity in Conflict™, Tools of Engagement, recharge sessions, and one-to-one coaching. This engagement continues through to today. In addition to forging a new generation of leaders, the Roy Group sessions have given principals and vice-principals a common language and set of tools to enhance their own leadership, an influence that continues to have a ripple effect throughout the school division. Mr. Wheler, who now serves as board chair of Synergy Credit Union, is a master practitioner whose career centers upon building people from wherever they are in their leadership journey toward their strongest, most aspirational selves. His indefatigable efforts in bringing the Academy into being, refining it and providing a platform for students interested in leadership to experience something pivotal are second only to his signature generosity of spirit and sheer human decency.