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The Association of Leadership Programs was to recognize Leadership Niagara for “excellence in innovation” during its Southeast Regional Conference in Atlanta on Friday.

The award was to be presented to the Executive Director Molly Anderson, who has led the group for the last five years.

“In recent years Leadership Niagara has innovated and transformed a great organization. We are sharply focused on achieving more for our participants and our region,” Anderson said in a written statement prior to receiving the award. “It is an honor to be recognized among hundreds of our peer leadership organizations for all the hard work thus far.”

Leadership Niagara is the longest running community leadership program in the state and is celebrating its 30th anniversary this year. More than 1,200 people have graduated from the program since 1984.