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Vision and Voice

The Cornerstone Program: Elevating the Next Wave of Leaders

Since 2014, the Cornerstone Program has made significant strides in preparing UVA team members for leadership roles through comprehensive personal development. It exemplifies our commitment to fostering talent within our own ranks and driving our team members toward success. As our eighth Cornerstone Program cohort (pictured above) gets ready to graduate in September, please join me in celebrating their achievements and learning more about what the program has to offer.

The Cornerstone Program aims to identify and nurture exceptional talent from our Academic Division, UVA Health and UVA Physicians Group. Each year, 30 to 40 participants are thoughtfully chosen by senior leadership, not just for their potential, but for their ability to drive positive change and innovation. The program offers personal growth and leadership development, collaborative project building and boasts impressive outcomes:

  • Personal Growth and Leadership Development: This year-long program offers a journey of self-improvement. From the outset, participants embark on self-discovery by creating individual learning plans based on insights from a 360-degree feedback assessment. These plans set the stage for a rewarding experience that combines classroom sessions, alongside opportunities for exposure and one-on-one mentorship with leaders. This mutual mentorship fosters unique perspectives and lasting connections that enrich learning for everyone involved.
  • Collaborative Project Building:  A highlight of the Cornerstone Program is the team project. These collaborative endeavors tackle organizational challenges, showcasing the participants' diverse expertise and experiences. Every September, the cohorts present their projects at graduation, offering innovative solutions to advance our organization. You can explore previous cohorts and their projects through the program's homepage.
  • Impressive Outcomes: While participation doesn't guarantee promotion, the program undoubtedly positions colleagues for future career progression opportunities. Past results speak volumes: over half of the previous participants have earned promotions or significantly expanded their responsibilities with UVA.

As we commemorate the upcoming graduation of the eighth cohort, we're so proud of our team members’ remarkable progress! This year’s cohort represents 10 of our 12 schools at UVA and a dozen operational units. Among the cohort are: Leon Henry, LCSW, Danielle Griggs, PharmD, MBA, MS, BCPS, and Devon K. Bloxsom, MSN from the Medical Center, Rosie Johanson, M.Ed. from the School of Medicine and Tara Dakolios, M.Ed. from the School of Nursing.  The cohort is guided by mentors, 11 of whom are past participants — including five from our medical center. Join me in extending congratulations to this entire group for their significant efforts during the past year!

Looking forward, we eagerly await the incoming cohort, which will get started this October and includes 11 UVA Health team members: Abby Southerland, RN, Ashley Ragland, MBA, Casey Gallagher, MBA, Halima Walker, MSN, RN, CCRN, Kristine Hall, M.Ed., Robin Longo, MSN, RN-C, Tracey (Justus) Patterson MSN, RN and Eric Shields, MS from the medical center, Jamie Waldbillig, SHRM-CP from UVA Physicians Group (UPG), and Parchayi Dalal, MPH, CCRC and Cody Ragland from the School of Medicine. These participants hold the promise of growth and meaningful contributions to UVA Health and our larger community. We're excited for the transformative impact the Cornerstone Program will continue to bring as its participants propel our organization to new heights.

This month, I’ve focused a lot on professional development available at UVA Health — we just have so much to offer! I am always open to hearing new ideas for helping our team members grow with UVA Health through the Be Heard Suggestion Box.

Take care and be well,