About Project LEAD
The Chamber’s leadership program, Project LEAD, begins every year in September, and is followed by monthly sessions at area companies and organizations with the goal of planning, fundraising, and ultimately implementing their chosen project. Project LEAD participants are introduced to the leadership of the area’s largest employers, while learning the inner workings of what makes the community function. Facilitated by Ryan Hill of KLAS Solutions; the program strives to build future leaders with a desire to serve the community, so participants also determine a project that addresses a local issue or concern.
Project LEAD XXXIII - Project Explanation
Project LEAD XXXIII -
For this year's project, Project Lead XXXIII has chosen to replace the city's current HID lightbulbs with new LED bulbs in 19 city-owned light poles. Bulbs will be replaced in the parking lot behind the municipal building, the public parking lot where the summer farmers market takes place, the public parking lot on South 3rd Street, the Police Department parking lot, and East Blackhawk Drive in the Gordon F. Day Industrial Park.
The benefits of these new bulbs include:
- SAFETY: LED bulbs produce better lighting than traditional bulbs which will illuminate once-dark areas - making streets, walkways, and parking lots safer for pedestrians and drivers in our community.
- DURABILITY: LED bulbs are shock and vibration resistant and can last up to four times longer than traditional bulbs, resulting in lower maintenance costs.
- COST SAVINGS: LED bulbs cut yearly electricity costs by approximately 78%, saving nearly $3,500 in the first year after implementation. Ultimately, these savings will positively impact city finances that can be directed toward other areas of need in the community.
- ENVIRONMENTAL SUSTAINABILITY: The reduction of energy usage helps lower carbon emissions, creating a healthier environment for the community. LED bulbs also produce zero toxic elements (like mercury), require less hardware, and have a longer lifetime.
The project will culminate in a celebration to showcase the completion of their goal.
The goal of the group is to raise $3,600 for the bulb replacements. The Fort Atkinson Community Foundation will match contributions, dollar-for-dollar allowing the group to meet the total fundraising goal of $7,200.
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Project LEAD over the Years
2020 - Implemented dog-friendly amenities around Fort Atkinson
2019 - Enhanced the Fort Atkinson Aquatic Center
2018 - Enhanced Riverwalk Plaza in downtown Fort Atkinson
2017 – Expansion of the Dwight Foster Public Library’s bilingual resources collection
2016 – Refurbishing the trails, handrails, landscaping and signage at the Brietkze Educational Wetlands
2015 – Planted trees in Ralph Park affected by Emerald Ash Borer
2014 – Trailway Park
2013 – Veterans Memorial at McCoy Park
2012 – Barrie Park Restrooms
2011 – “Then and Now” Historic Pictorial Book of Fort Atkinson
2010 – Enhancement of Barrie Park Band Shell
2009 – Install fence around playground at Lorman Park, add sign commemorating record flood level of 2008
2008 – Lighted crossing signs for bike trail, planted 20 trees at Jones Park, and design a “green” bathroom for Lorman Park
2007 – New playground equipment at Ralph Park
2006 – Trail Markers at Mush-Ko-Se-Day Park
2005 – Mile markers along the bike trail and lights for the holiday tree at Lorman Park
2004 – River Walk railing and scanner for the Hoard Historical Museum
2003 – Placed identification blocks in front of historical sites and refurbished the plaque at the original fort site
2002 – Fort Atkinson welcome sign in front of Armory
2001 – Cut pathways for walking paths and Dorothy Carnes Park
2000 – Lighted event sign and historic walkway at Jones Park
1999 – Added a water-fountain along the bike trail
1998 – Landscaped HWY 26 Bypass signs
1997 – Initiated Adopt-a-Park program with Fort Atkinson Parks and Recreation
1996 – Lighted outdoor locator map at the Chamber of Commerce
1995 – Phone Blitz to get people out to vote
1994 – First Buckskinner Rendezvous held in Fort Atkinson
1993 – Built fence around Panther Intaglio
1992 – Compiled list of available meeting facilities for business and industry; created listing of available community activities for youth; created design for bathrooms at Lorman Park
1991 – Recycling Committee formed
1990 – Developed Employee Assistance program
1989 – First Project LEAD class graduates
The first Project LEAD class poses for a picture at their graduation.
The 2013 class of Project LEAD meets for their retreat. This half-day rustic workshop helps participants build relationships and develop leadership skills.