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Celebrating the Next Generation

Bright Future on the Horizon!

‘Karen and Jay celebrate the exciting opportunities and potential impact of this next great generation’

We are blessed by the next generation.  The youth today who are coming of age are talented, motivated and have a powerful entrepreneurial spirit.  And what an exciting time for them to come onto the scene.  At this juncture in our evolution, they truly have an opportunity to transform our world in ways that only years ago could hardly be imagined.  Whether it be AI, mobile devices, regenerative medicine or even exciting new forms of energy, the world of tomorrow will be vastly different from what we have experienced in the past.  And it is this next generation who will shape our destiny. 

Karen and I are particularly fortunate to have the opportunity to see this phenomenon right up close.  Not only do we have our own seven children – all of this next generation – but we’ve also gotten to know so very many of their friends.  In addition, we work and interact with a large number of young entrepreneurs in our business activities, so we get exposure to countless others. We continually marvel at their flexibility, their ingenuity, and their unabashed courage to challenge norms and chart their own paths. 

For instance, they are ‘breaking the mold’ when it comes to the way they are approaching their education and careers.  Gone are the days when everyone was expected to move in ‘lock step’ towards a college degree.  Whether it was the right choice for them individually or not.  Today, there are multiple paths that are being embraced.  The trades are seeing a rebirth.  Practical forms of education are taking shape.  Stackable credentials that train and prepare individuals for very specific and valuable roles are becoming commonplace.  These exciting new avenues are ‘training up’ this next generation to have unparalleled career opportunities.

We are also blessed that they are immensely committed and concerned, as a group, about doing good!  They choose to be involved in efforts that motivate them – where work is not just work, but where they can also feel that they are having a positive impact on others and the world around them.  I applaud this.  Karen and I try to incorporate these same principles into our activities as well and encourage these heartfelt efforts.

Lastly, as we do so, it’s very important that we all do our very best to pass on to them the fundamental values that have shaped our American way of life.  Freedom, a love of family, a commitment to community, a respect for one another and an enduring faith that each day will be better than the last.  Thankfully, if we do our part – with enthusiasm and a deep commitment, we can be certain to see the most consequential generation in history leave their mark in a way like no other generation before them.  Hats off to this next generation!

I suppose it’s a truism to observe that every generation tends to look down at the generation following it with some degree of critique.  No doubt this is simply human nature.  Change is often quite difficult.  But the truth is this next generation represents hope for the future, bringing fresh perspectives and innovative ideas that can drive positive change in society. Their energy, creativity, and willingness to take risks are qualities that can inspire us all to push boundaries and explore new possibilities. By celebrating the potential contributions of the next generation, we acknowledge their importance in shaping a brighter tomorrow.

Young Leaders Making a Difference

This week, we are delighted to be spotlighting several successful young emerging leaders as well the leadership programs they have helped shape them.  Specifically, some of the oldest and most respected leadership programs in the Granite State that together are helping each succeeding generation impact our beloved state in an immensely positive manner.


Let’s start with ‘Leadership Greater Manchester.’  This is a program of the Greater Manchester Chamber that started in 1986 and has proudly amassed over 1,000 graduates. The program is designed to recognize and nurture existing leadership talents from diverse community sectors. Through the exchange of viewpoints and experiences, participants are exposed to the challenges, opportunities, and vital issues affecting the Greater Manchester community. LGM begins in September with a two-day overnight retreat, followed by nine daylong sessions held monthly through June. Each session focuses on a new topic presented by local and state leaders, as well as experts who present issues through lectures, discussions, simulation exercises, and on-site visits.


Cole Riel describes his experience in Leadership Greater Manchester as impactful, insightful, and eye-opening. “Leadership Greater Manchester was a transformative journey that broadened my knowledge of our city through experience and understanding. We heard directly from experts about their daily work and had intimate conversations about their hurdles, successes, and visions for the future." After graduating, Riel has coordinated the past two sessions of Leadership Greater Manchester, working directly with the program's Steering Committee, composed of industry leaders from Greater Manchester. Riel is most proud of the program's emphasis on collaborative learning, community engagement, and firsthand experiences. "Whether it is a police ride-along, touring ARMI, or interacting with kids at the Boys & Girls Club, Leadership Greater Manchester strives to provide the class with new perspectives and inspiration for future community involvement." Learn more at:  leadership-greater-manchester


Another one of Manchester’s emerging leaders is Erik Lesniak who is also a graduate of the program. He is part of the City of Manchester’s Economic Development Office working as the city's Business Liaison. You can always find him out and about the community helping support and grow new and existing businesses.  Thanks to both Cole and Erik for all that you do to help the great city of Manchester!


The Next Level Leadership Consortium Program at UNH’s Peter T. Paul College of Business and Economics is designed to accelerate the transition for recently promoted or soon-to-be-promoted senior leaders. Candidates are often identified by their organization as “high potential” or “fast trackers” and typically have 5-10 years of progressive management experience. Organizations leverage this program to enhance their succession planning and executive onboarding. It helps address the need to develop senior leaders in the private, public, and non-profit sectors. Forward thinking organizations embrace this program to invest in their high-potential leaders, preparing them for senior-level roles and gaining a significant return on investment. You can find out more at


Jessica Leandri from Northeast Delta Dental participated in the UNH Leadership Consortium’s Fall 2022 class. She said, "Having completed my graduate work at UNH, I had high expectations for the program, and it did not disappoint. The program design and delivery strike the ideal balance between information-based sessions led by interesting and diverse faculty and group engagement opportunities. The consortium draws from a broad swath of different industries and leaders, curating a robust group that brings insight, innovation, and shared experience to the daylong sessions. Working with your cohort over time deepens the experience and enriches the relationships built across the table. Peer input and idea sharing set this program apart from other leadership development programs. It focuses on core business domains and uses data and the latest evidence to revisit the tried and true of executive education and present new best practices. I would encourage anyone in a managerial role to pursue the program and capitalize on the opportunities it provides to enhance your leadership development."


Last but certainly not least in the growing list of leadership programs around the state is Leadership New Hampshire (LNH). Its mission is "Building a Community of Informed and Engaged Leaders." LNH fulfills this mission annually by gathering a select cohort of talented and accomplished individuals, providing them the opportunity to learn about the complex issues facing the state, connect with one another, and serve their communities and state in leadership positions. In 1991, a group of New Hampshire citizens, at the Governor's invitation, engaged their fellow citizens in a two-year conversation, reflecting on the state's history, traditions, and institutions. They asked, “What makes our state a good place to live?" and “What can we do to ensure it will continue to be so for all those who come after us?” Their report, “New Hampshire: My Responsibility,” recommended increasing civic engagement and strengthening communities by connecting and educating a diverse pool of leaders about the state. From this recommendation, Leadership New Hampshire (LNH) was born. Since then, LNH has gathered 25-40 emerging and established leaders annually for a comprehensive study of the state's communities, issues, and challenges, building a community of informed and engaged leaders.

Leadership NH is a nonprofit organization that receives generous support from New Hampshire businesses, organizations, and individuals to continue offering this impactful experience each year. To learn more about sponsorship opportunities, email


We thank all of the young leaders who have invested time in these programs to better themselves, their organizations and ultimately their communities and our state.

‘Passing Freedom on to the Next Generation’ - Flags of Valor and the BIG Flag Build

As we approach Memorial Day, it’s important to remember what it is that we are remembering. Unlike Veterans Day, which is dedicated to all who have served in the US military, Memorial Day is specifically about remembering those who paid the ultimate price while serving. Only a couple weeks after Memorial Day is Flag Day. This holiday commemorates the adoption of the US flag on June 14th, 1777. None of these days would be celebrated by Americans today if not for the courage of our brave service members throughout history. 


One of those people in recent years is Brian Steorts. He started his military service as an 82nd Airborne Paratrooper in the Army, and later became an Air Force Special Operations Pilot. After eight combat deployments and while in rehab from a service-related injury, he began woodworking and donating his handmade wooden American flags to the families of fallen soldiers.  In 2015, he turned this flag production into a business, called Flags of Valor. Based in Winchester, Virginia, Flags of Valor has employed more than 70 Veterans. 


During Covid, as Founder and CEO Brian saw a need to create a flag building kit for kids. It gives them a hands-on discovery and education about the colors, the reason for the number of stars and stripes, which then this leads to a greater discussion about the difference between the three holidays mentioned above, as well as the 4th of July. This Kids Flag Build Kit has really taken off, to the point where Loudoun County, VA has mandated it as part of the local curriculum. Next Wednesday, 37 schools with a total of 3200 1st graders will be participating – each with a kit and building a flag – while very importantly, learning valuable lessons about our values and history. Flags Of Valor is providing all of the kits at cost in order to help spread awareness and help more children receive this valuable education. 


Despite some of the controversy and divisiveness we see in our political discourse today, especially as amplified by the media, the truth is that we still live in the greatest country in the world, and we owe it to the next generation to help them understand what is so deeply good and so worth fighting for.


If you or your company would be motivated to support this cause – ‘Passing Freedom on to the Next Generation’ - Flags of Valor has made it easy to do so.  You can purchase flag building kits for your children or grandchildren at   You can also choose to sponsor a classroom at  If your company might like to get involved and organize or sponsor an event, there are opportunities for you to do that too.  And you’ll be in good company. For instance, a great American business, Dewalt Power Tools is a proud Corporate Partner, and there are many others who have joined in with Flags of Valor to support this vital cause. 

Positive Profile of the Week:  Joe Mitchell

This week we are delighted to highlight a great friend and highly accomplished leader of the next generation - Joe Mitchell.


I first met and got to know Joe several years ago while on a visit to his family business located in rural Iowa.  I was very impressed.  Since then, I’ve had the pleasure of spending time with him, working on several projects together and as such, my admiration for Joe Mitchell has only grown.


Today, Joe is a prominent young public servant and businessman from Iowa, known for his strong commitment to the state and its small businesses. Born and raised in Wayland, Iowa, Joe’s deep roots in the community have significantly influenced his political and professional endeavors. He was elected to the Iowa House of Representatives at the age of 21, becoming one of the youngest state legislators in the country. His tenure was marked by a focus on policies that support economic growth, particularly for small business, which he views as the backbone of Iowa's economy.


Joe's dedication to Iowa's future is evident in his legislative priorities. He championed tax reforms that benefit small business, striving to reduce regulatory burdens and create a more favorable environment for entrepreneurship. Recognizing the critical role of small business in local communities, Mitchell advocates for initiatives that provide them with greater access to capital and resources, fostering innovation and sustainability.


Beyond his legislative work, Mitchell is also an entrepreneur, bringing the firsthand experience of the challenges faced by small business owners. This dual perspective has enabled him to craft policies that are both practical and impactful. His business acumen is complemented by a forward-thinking approach to education and workforce development, ensuring that the next generation of Iowans will be well-equipped with the skills necessary to thrive in a dynamic economy.


Joe's commitment to Iowa is not just about economic policies; he is also a proponent of civic engagement and leadership development among young people. He believes in empowering the next generation to take an active role in shaping their communities and the state. That is why he launched Run GenZ a national movement taking the United States by storm. Through mentorship programs and community initiatives, Joe works to inspire young Americans to pursue public service and entrepreneurial ventures, ensuring our great country remains a vibrant and prosperous land for years to come.


Joe Mitchell's dedication to public engagement and small businesses, coupled with his efforts to empower the next generation, highlights his unwavering commitment to our country’s future. And his work is paving the way for a more engaged and dynamic community.  We salute Joe as an exemplary role model – leading this next generation to a bright future.

Quotes of the Week:  Celebrating the Next Generation

"The young people of today are the leaders of tomorrow, and we have full confidence in their ability to drive positive change." - John F. Kennedy

"The enthusiasm and fresh perspective that the next generation brings are essential for the progress and prosperity of our nation." - Angela Merkel

"Our youth embody the spirit of innovation and resilience, inspiring us with their potential to transform society for the better." - Malala Yousafzai

"As each new generation rises to the challenges of their time, they carry with them the hopes and dreams of a brighter future for all." - Michelle Obama

"The voices of the youth are powerful agents of transformation, and we eagerly await the impact they will have on our country." - Justin Trudeau

"The energy and idealism of young people are vital forces driving social change and progress in our nation." - Barack Obama



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