Executive Directions Summit

Are you an experienced nonprofit leader looking to increase your competence and confidence by addressing complex challenges? Do you want to work more effectively with your Board? Are you looking to expand your network of peers in the nonprofit sector?

Join us for Executive Directions Summit, an 18-month cohort-focused leadership development program for nonprofit Executive Directors and CEOs. Through addressing specific issues and concerns – including change management, adaptive leadership, planning, governance, fund development and effective communication – Summit provides the tools and strategies critical for today’s nonprofit leaders.

The ripple effect is felt at the board level, with the staff, within our sector, within Calgary, and most importantly, with the people we serve.
— Summit Graduate

XD Summit participants learn and grow together to advance their organizations and their impact in the community.

Fourteen full-day cohort sessions and 16 hours of one-on-one coaching allow participants to delve into their most pressing leadership challenges and opportunities, embrace new ideas and perspectives, and adapt to changing environments with the support and encouragement of peers.

XD Summit covers multiple learning themes through customized content that is most relevant to the needs of each small-group cohort.


Through Executive Directions Summit, you will:

  • Get a better understanding of your role as an Executive Director;

  • Build additional leadership skills in human resource management and fund development;

  • Gain a new understanding and skillset to work with your Board of Directors;

  • Become part of a community of peers;

  • Receive personal mentoring and coaching; and

  • Participate in a 360° Emotional Intelligence Assessment and personal coaching session.

The tools and strategies provided were extremely helpful.
We were able to use real work situations we were
struggling with and work through a process to gain
strategies to resolve them.
— Summit Graduate
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Program Specifics: Executive Directions Summit

Who: This program is for nonprofit Executive Directors and CEOs.

When: Current Summit 9 2018/19 cohort Level 1 session dates are May 7 & 8, June 12, September 11, October 9, November 13, and December 11, 2018; Level 2 session dates are February 12, March 12, April 9, May 14, June 11, September 10, and October 8, 2019. XD Summit Cohort 10 begins in 2019 (dates to be announced soon - join our newsletter to get the latest updates on XD Summit!) and is presented as an 18-month cohort experience over two levels. Applications for XD Summit 10 are now being accepted. Please contact us or complete an application below.

Where: Full-day cohort classroom and individual coaching sessions are held in Calgary, Alberta.

Cost: $6,000 per level of seven cohort sessions and eight individual coaching sessions. Participants are encouraged to apply for the Canada-Alberta Job Grant to offset two-thirds of the total program fees. Participants outside of Calgary may also be eligible for assistance with transportation, accommodation and meal costs with the Canada-Alberta Job Grant. Grant applications must be submitted and approved prior to program start date and take at least 30 days for processing. Full details on the grant program can be found on the Canada Alberta Job Grant website.

Download the Summit Cohort 9 Program Overview

Are you ready to invest in your professional and personal growth?

Schedule a 15-minute conversation to learn more, or complete the application form.


Summit Facilitators for 2018-19


Ruth Esau


Ruth is an outcome-focused facilitator and coach with a passion for inspiring transformative living and leadership. Her own training and development is focused in executive coaching, emotional intelligence, strengths development, and educational excellence. Ruth’s desired outcome for each leader is for the time they spend in Executive Directions to be transformative in their personal and professional life in ways that cause them to grow in their confidence and competence as a leader.

SUMMIT 9 is Ruth’s fifth Cohort Facilitating experience, and one that is greatly anticipated.


Larry Thiessen


As a coach and facilitator, Larry believes the questions that we ask are more important than the solutions that we offer. His experience in consulting, executive coaching, leadership development, and strategic planning is focused on helping others to “see and think differently.” Larry’s preferred outcome is that each leader who participates in Executive Directions will increase their leadership capacity and move further up along their journey toward maximum impact.


Program Supporter