Emerging Leaders United

Leiss and one - Emerging Leaders United
ELU group - Emerging Leaders United

ELU Board

Board Chair:
Celestia Ware

Vice Chair:
Megan Pratt

Patrick McBride

David Kelly

Staff Advisor:
Joy Lehmann

United Way’s Emerging Leaders United (ELU) is a leadership and professional development program that enhances leadership skills through the unique community investment lens of United Way. Developed to augment a professional’s career path, ELU sessions provide insight into the necessary skills for serving on nonprofit boards and exposure to local programs that assist area residents and strengthen our communities. Participants are presented with opportunities to engage and network with other members, community stakeholders, session speakers, and nonprofit leaders.

ELU members expand their network and enhance their skills by interacting with individuals in diverse fields and learning about United Way philanthropic partnerships. Members empower each other to share their time, talent, and resources to affect lasting change in the community. Members are community-minded professionals who want to connect with like-minded peers, serve their community, and become leaders in giving.

To learn more about Emerging Leaders United and how you can join, contact Joy Lehmann or call 615-771-2312.


ELU Race EC Image 300x200 - Emerging Leaders United

Looking for a new adventure while challenging yourself at an 8K or 5K? Grab your friends and join us at Run for the Health of It, a United Way 5K/8K on Saturday, April 13 at Franklin Bicentennial Park. After crossing the finish line, enjoy great food by Dan’s Gourmet Mac & Cheese, Smoke’em Low BBQ, and Tiny Little Donuts.

Registration is open. Walkers and runners are welcome!



ELU Mixer – Learn who we are and what we do | Event flyer
Guest Speaker: Kevin Dyson, former Tennessee Titan
Time: 5:30–7:30 pm
Location: Brewhouse South, 1855 Galleria Blvd., Franklin
Door prizes at event.

THE ART OF VOLUNTEERING – What’s in it for you?
Time: 11:30 am – 1:00 pm
Location: High Hopes Development Center, 301 High Hopes Court, Franklin
Lunch provided.

MAY 15  / 
THE BOARD – Preparing for strategic nonprofit board development

AUGUST 21 / 
BOOTS ON THE GROUND – Programs that serve our community

THE ART OF RESPONSIBLE GENEROSITY – How your funds are invested in the community

TOCQUEVILLE/ELU MIXER – A holiday leadership gathering*

All sessions dates are tentative. Prospective members are encouraged to attend one session per year. Contact Joy Lehmann to RSVP. *Only open to members.


  • Commitment to attending and participating in scheduled events
  • United Way Leadership Donor, $500+ per year (choose your payment method and frequency)
  • Receive a Certificate of Program Participation after completing one year of membership
  • Opportunities for public recognition and ELU leadership positions
  • Opportunity to be a founding ELU member

Open ELU Member/Sponsor Guidelines for details.



Local businesses and organizations are invited to sponsor ELU sessions. Benefits include:

  • Acknowledgment on printed ELU materials for the calendar year
  • Speak at the opening of sponsored sessions
  • Provide promotional materials at group events
  • Recognition via website and social media

Open ELU Member/Sponsor Guidelines for details.