Center for the Advancement of Leadership Skills (CALS): Spring 2013 Newsletter

In Memoriam:

    The Center for the Advancement of Leadership Skills commemorates the lives of two individuals  who not only made lasting impressions on the program through their participation in CALS, but also significantly touched the lives of others.
    The CALS program recently lost one its most revered faculty members, Mr. Arch Lustberg. Mr. Lustberg, an author and trailblazer in the field of effective communication, passed away on February 8, 2013.Mr. Lustberg presented on communication skills for the 2007-2010 CALS programs. He also was a tenured faculty member for the Henry Toll Fellowship program, The Council of State Governments’ national leadership program.
    Mr. Lustberg was a wonderful communications coach, full of insight and dynamic in his delivery. Many of the CALS alumni that were fortunate enough to participate in his sessions have remarked that it was one of the highlights of the CALS program.Mr. Lustberg raised the bar on the caliber of presenters that would be affiliated with the CALS program. He was a great friend to the SLC and CSG and it was an honor to have worked with him.
    Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family and friends.
    Representative Jessica Sibley Upshaw, a member of the 2007 CALS class, passed away on March 24, 2013. Representative Upshaw was born in Meridian, Mississippi, and earned her bachelor of business administration and juris doctorate degrees from the University of Mississippi.
    In 2004, Ms. Upshaw was elected to the Mississippi House of Representatives where she held several committee assignments and leadership positions, including chair of the House Conservation and Water Resources Committee.
    Members have commented on Representative Upshaw’s remarkable ability to read extremely fast, allowing her to speed through wordy legislation and break down the details in minutes. She was a leader in the Mississippi Gulf Coast’s recovery from both Hurricane Katrina and the BP Oil Spill. Representative Upshaw will be remembered for her integrity, her compassion and her dedication to her constituents.

    2013 Center for the Advancement of Leadership Skills

    The Southern Legislative Conference of The Council of State Governments is recruiting emerging leaders to apply for the 2013 Center for the Advancement of Leadership Skills (CALS). In an effort to create consistency in response to the constantly changing landscape of leadership development, we are happy to announce that the University of Arkansas System, with the support of the Arkansas General Assembly, will serve as the long-term partner of the 
    CALS program.
    In addition to establishing a more permanent home for the CALS program, the SLC will begin accepting applications on an annual basis from all 15 member states, rather than on a rotating schedule.
    The 2013 CALS program will be held October 30 to November 3. The SLC welcomes your recommendations for leaders who should be considered for the 2013 CALS class. Please 
    send your endorsements to Lori Moore at

    Leadership: An Ongoing Balancing Act by Art Dykstra

    Being a leader requires balance. Effective leaders develop a sense of proportion that, once in place, internalizes itself as an intuitive sense of balance. Having such a standard of balance allows leaders to develop a manageable approach to such tensions as task accomplishment vs. interpersonal relationships, written communications vs. personal communications, group vs. individual meetings, and base pay increases vs. incentive compensation. Likewise, successful leaders know when to use stories and when to use numbers, when to use poetry and when to use science.
    Developing such a balance does not necessarily come easily or quickly. It does require a sense of mindfulness, of knowing the context and of being aware of new possibilities. Maintaining the balance also requires patience and perseverance, and the ability to set aside the ever present feeling of urgency.
    Leaders work consistently to maintain the balance over many varied dimensions. One area of leadership concern that, while being of utmost importance is frequently out of balance, pertains to the priority of time. “Never let the needs of the present prevent opportunities of the future,” were words of wisdom passed along to me many years ago by a close friend and mentor.
    To practice and master such advice is no easy matter. For most of us who are leaders, the well-intended planning activities designed to enable us to think ahead are abandoned shortly after arriving at the office. Accidents, incidents and unforeseen events all conspire together to lock us into the present. We confuse ourselves into thinking that unless everything is being dealt with, nothing is being dealt with. So we hurry and worry and go home tired and defeated. And the next day it happens to us again, the next week and the next month and the next year. Knowing about something (i.e., never let the needs of present prevent opportunities of the future) and doing something about it are not the same thing.
    Anticipating and planning for the future requires us to extract ourselves from the addiction of urgency and to make a deliberate and conscious decision to concern ourselves and key staff with the future—every day. Such a decision requires the discipline to establish thinking ahead activities as a matter of daily routine.
    Reprinted with permission of Perdido magazine

    Art Dykstra is the president / executive director of Trinity Services, Inc. He earned a master's degree in Clinical Psychology from Bradley University in Illinois. He has also taught at the undergraduate and graduate level, designing such courses as "Human Services Administration," "Clinical Administration," "Psychological Testing," "Management for Non-Profit Organizations" and "Executive Leadership" at Indiana University, Roosevelt University, Northern Illinois, and Northeastern Illinois University. He has written numerous articles for Perdido, the quarterly magazine on leadership which he founded and edits. For more information on Trinity Services, Inc. and Perdido, please visit: and