Waterloo, IA: (319) 232-1156 | Cedar Falls, IA: (319) 266-3593

Tag Archives: Orange Elementary School

Cedar Valley Business Education Partnerships Focus of ABI Connecting Statewide Leaders Event

Emily Schettler, Communications Coordinator, Iowa Association of Business and Industry

Business and education leaders from around the state will gather at Wartburg College on December 10th, to discuss the importance and value of partnerships between Iowa’s business community and educational institutions.

The forum is part of the Iowa Association of Business and Industry’s (ABI) Connecting Statewide Leaders discussion, which brings together experts from across Iowa to discuss important issues and present ideas.

Learn about two existing business education partnerships, Elevate Advanced Manufacturing and Leader Valley, as well as STEM initiatives taking place around the state.

Elevate Advanced Manufacturing is an ABI initiative focused on teaching students, parents and educators about the valuable career opportunities available in advanced manufacturing in Iowa. Leader Valley, a program of the Greater Cedar Valley Alliance and Chamber, prepares students for life by providing them important life skills.

Panelists for Thursday’s forum include Michele Farrell, Elevate Iowa program manager; Teri Trask, Orange Elementary Principal and a member Leader Valley’s Leader in Me task force; Tom Penaluna of CBE Companies and Leader Valley; and Adriana Johnson, who works on STEM initiatives for Rockwell Collins. Steve Dust, president and CEO of the Greater Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber will moderate the event.

The forum will take place at 11 a.m. in the McCaskey Lyceum at the Saemann Student Center on Wartburg’s campus. It will be followed by a networking lunch in the Hagemann Castle Room at the Saemann Student Center. Both events are open to the public. Those who are interested in attending can register here.

Mark your calendar for our upcoming Connecting Statewide Leaders forums:
March 3: Discussion on business and industry in Dubuque
April 7: Discussion on public safety in Council Bluffs


(Cedar Valley of Iowa) – WATERLOOOrange Elementary has been designated by FranklinCovey as only the second Lighthouse School in Iowa.

FranklinCovey visited Orange last week to confirm Leader in Me has been implemented as a whole school transformational model. It involves academics, leadership and a culture where you can see, hear and feel the 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.

“Our entire learning community (students, staff & parents) are honored and proud to be

chosen as a Lighthouse School. The keys to our mission, to educate, inspire and lead – make the world a better place, have been brought to life on this journey,” says Orange Principal, Teri Trask, “It has been exciting to be a part of the culture shift as we see students empowered through authentic leadership opportunities.”

Orange is now one of only 123 Lighthouse Schools in the world. The official announcement will be made at the Leader in MeR Symposium at UNI this week where Sean Covey, Senior Vice President of Innovations and Products at FranklinCovey will address educators and congratulate Orange on their achievement.

Orange will have a special celebration when the banner is presented.

The Leader in MeR Lighthouse School title is awarded by FranklinCovey to honor the attainment of a well-rounded leadership model. Lighthouse Schools serve as models of leadership and mentors to other schools by meeting these standards:

  •     Lighthouse Team
  •     Leadership Environment
  •     Integrated Curriculum and Instruction
  •     Staff Collaboration
  •     Student Leadership
  •     Parent & Community Engagement
  •    Leadership Events
  •    Goal Tracking

Currently, there are 122 Lighthouse Schools internationally which serve as models of leadership and mentors to other schools. Orange Elementary is the first Cedar Valley school to receive the designation, the second of the forty-four participating schools in Iowa.

Orange Elementary is one of the first 17 schools implementing the Leader in MeR through the Greater Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber’s Leader Valley initiative. Leader Valley is the talent development initiative of the Alliance & Chamber. Leader Valley’s primary focus is implementation of Leader in Me across school districts in the Cedar Valley. The Leader in Me R, based on the Steven Covey’s 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, is creating leadership cultures in schools and instilling 21st Century soft skills of effectiveness in Cedar Valley students.

Trask adds that she believes the Cedar Valley will be celebrating more Lighthouse Schools in the near future thanks to the support of the Leader Valley.  “We truly appreciate the positive synergizing with so many other Cedar Valley schools who are focused on improving academics, leadership and culture and empowering students with the skills they need to thrive in the 21st Century. Leadership is definitely a TEAM SPORT in the Cedar Valley! ” says Trask.

For more information on Orange Elementary and the Waterloo Schools implementation of the Leader in Me, contact Tara Thomas, Communications Director by email to thomast@waterlooschools.org.

For more information on Leader Valley initiative and the Leader in MeR, contact Melissa Reade, Leader Valley Program Director at the Greater Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber by calling (319)232-1156 or by email at mreade@cedarvalleyalliance.com. You can also visit







Be part of something greater - The Cedar Valley of Iowa

The Greater Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber is a regional economic community development corporation working to increase economic vitality and wealth in the Waterloo / Cedar Falls area and surrounding economic region. The Alliance & Chamber has approximately 800 members that represents over 40,000 employees