A Harvard man leads ‘Boys and Girls’ in Tulare County
exeter – Tulare County’s Boys & Girls Clubs are among the best in the nation. Club members here rate their experiences higher than the national average, they are one of the most respected non-profits in the county and their CEO is Harvard educated, or at least he will be.
Galen Quenzer, CEO of Boys & Girls Clubs of the Sequoias, was one of just 55 senior leaders from the Boys & Girls Club Movement who were selected last month to participate in a new year-long leadership development program called the Leadership Summit. The program began in May 2017 and includes a collaborative educational experience designed by Harvard Business School Executive Education and Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA).
“Just being there with the minds of Harvard Business School you really felt like you were getting some top notch information,” said Quenzer, who returned from the summit’s initial conference at Harvard Business School this week. “We studied cases of successful organization, most of which had nothing to do with youth. We looked at the different ways they viewed, talked about and promoted their organizations.”
To drive transformational impact nationally and on a local level, BGCA teamed up with the preeminent leadership development institution in the world, Harvard Business School. Together, the organizations established a leadership development experience designed to supercharge the capabilities of local CEOs, raise the organization’s collective leadership abilities and solve the most pressing challenges facing Clubs.
Quenzer and the other BGCA leaders underwent an intense experience designed to solve organization-wide challenges and to help each local organization reach its unique goals and will work together to implement strategies discussed while on Harvard’s 40-acre campus in Boston. More than 10,000 business executives attended programs held at the campus last year.
“I am honored to have been chosen as an inaugural participant in the BGCA Leadership Summit Program, and to have an opportunity to join my colleagues at Harvard Business School,” said Quenzer, who oversees the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Sequoias from its Exeter headquarters. “This is a rare opportunity to learn from an establishment with such a legacy of prestige and success, alongside other leaders with a shared mission, and to use what I have learned to deepen my impact locally and nationally.”
The extremely selective program is designed for high performing Boys & Girls Club organizations. Quenzer said Boys & Girls Club has a national goal to reach hundreds of thousands of new school-age children by 2025. One way to accomplish that is by creating an optimal club experience, a term the organization uses to describe children who rate the club high in key areas such as a sense of belonging, fun, and staff expectations, connections with adults, and recognition from staff. Thirty-five percent of BGCA members nationwide highly rated their experience but 37 percent of Tulare County club members rated their experience as high.
“The statistics show that kids with an optimal experience perform better mentally, emotionally and physically,” Quenzer said. “So I’d like to get that number to about 75%.”
Boys & Girls Club of the Sequoias currently serves youth in the communities of Visalia, Tulare, Ivanhoe, Farmersville, Exeter, Porterville and Strathmore. The mission of the organization is to enable all young people, especially those who need them most, to reach their full potential as productive, caring, responsible citizens. In 2016 BGCS reached over 3,500 youth throughout Tulare County providing them with meaningful mentoring with caring staff and participation in life changing programs. To learn more about the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Sequoias, or to support its youth-focused programs, visit the web site at www.bgcsequoias.org or call 592-4074.