25 years of Bringing Salem Communities Together

Leadership Foundations

Leadership Foundations

Image Credit: The Salem Reporter

At the heart of Leadership Foundations is a simple and earnest belief that community transformation begins with people of good faith and goodwill coming together to make  their city a better place. Sam Skillern has embodied this vision throughout the last 25 years of his career, joining leaders and building community in Salem, Oregon. His work has connected leaders in faith, education, and local government to reduce crime and increase the overall well-being of children and families. The Salem Reporter recently spotlighted Sam and the Salem Leadership Foundation’s efforts developing a network dedicated to turning battlegrounds to playgrounds in Salem.  

We are thrilled to see the transformative work of our member, the Salem Leadership Foundation, being recognized. Learn more about the incredible work happening through Sam and the Salem Leadership Foundation in The Salem Reporter at: 


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Celia Vigil

Communications Associate

What book, movie, quote, or tv show has most shaped your understanding of leadership or the city?   

A quote that has shaped my understanding of leadership and the city is, “Do not be daunted by the enormity of the world’s grief. Do justly now, love mercy now, walk humbly now. You are not obligated to complete the work, but neither are you free to abandon it.”

While the amount of work there is to do to transform cities is great, this quote reminds me that we are freed from having to complete it all, though our obligation to continue remains. We may never see a huge transformation in our lifetime. The work stretches far beyond us. However, this does not make our acts of faithfulness in the day to day less significant, no matter how small they may seem.