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What is LSET?
The Mission of LSET is to promote better understanding of the nine counties that comprise Southeast Texas, namely Bolivar Peninsula of Galveston County and Chambers, Hardin, Jasper, Jefferson, Liberty, Newton, Orange, and Tyler counties. Each class of LSET leaders from all sections of the region learns about complex issues that face our area. LSET programs examine the strengths, weaknesses, obstacles and opportunities for economic development, regional unity and quality of life. Leadership Southeast Texas (LSET) operates as a 501 (c) (6) regional leadership Texas Non-Profit Corporation as of July 5, 2007 and is governed by a board of directors. The LSET Advisory Council is a committee of LSET Governing Board of Directors which is responsible for programming (undergraduate and alumni) of LSET. From 1992 to July 2007, LSET was a program of the Partnership of Southeast Texas (POST).

Who are Class Participants?
LSET classes are purposely limited in size to provide opportunities for communication and interaction with regional leaders, diverse groups and individuals outside the participants’ regular profession and social acquaintances. Approximately 60 stakeholders – representing a wide cross section of the region including decision makers from business, manufacturing, government, media, education, chambers of commerce, and non-profit community and cultural organizations participate annually in the LSET class.

What happens in a class session?
LSET program sessions are an educational process that includes professional speakers who present balanced information on timely topics. Candor from LSET class members during interactive discussions is emphasized. Program sessions stress being comfortable so casual dress is strongly encouraged. Sessions always begin with registration and a light breakfast and a catered lunch for participants.

How can one participate?
Participation in LSET is by invitation only. Current class members and LSET Alumni are asked to propose potential participants for future classes. A roster of alumni and the form for submitting suggested participants is available upon request to LSET office and on website (under construction).

How does the admissions process work?
The admissions chair and graduates of the program who comprise the Advisory Council appoint some 30 to 40 LSET Alumni and current class members from the nine counties to serve as the admissions committee. The group meets each April to choose candidates for the upcoming class. Their choices are limited to a specific number based on the size of county. They consider profession, ethnicity, gender, etc. in order to have a well balanced class of professionals representing the region. A final list of proposed candidates is prepared for consideration by Advisory Council in June. Invitation letters are sent to candidates in July to become LSET participants.

What is required?
Participants are expected to attend five day-long sessions during the year, beginning in September. Attendance at four of five sessions is a requirement to receive certification at the final May session. Class sessions convene on pre-scheduled Thursdays from 7:30 am to 4:30 pm at various locations throughout the nine-county region. Attendance at the Annual Meeting event each August is strongly encouraged for new class members as a networking opportunity to meet other participants and alumni.

What is the tuition fee?
Tuition for LSET class sessions is $750 for Class of 2010 (September 2009 – May 2010) which covers class materials, meals, and administrative costs. Assistance is available for qualifying candidates. The Executive Director can provide criteria for tuition assistance and procedure to apply.

What else happens?
Each year, LSET’s final session includes a brief graduation ceremony where participants who completed the five-class program receive their graduation certificate and class portrait. LSET hosts an annual meeting each August to showcase a community or county in the region, to install Governing Board Directors, Advisory Council members and Alumni Representatives, to introduce the incoming class and to recognize recent graduates. The LSET alumni group plans LSET Day in Austin every other year when the Texas State Legislature is in session for current LSET class members, alumni members and their spouses to attend informative workshops on issues impacting SETX, meet with Legislators along with networking and fellowship activities. A Task Force is currently evaluating the feasibility of creating LSET Day in Washington for spring 2010. The introduction of an LSET Youth pilot program is anticipated for the 2009-2010 program year. The communications committee of the LSET Advisory Council publishes an e-newsletter about LSET programs and alumni news. LSET maintains an active website that contains an alumni roster, information about current programs and governance, a detailed calendar of events, and forms for nominating potential participants. To date, there are 834 Southeast Texas regional champions world-wide who have graduated from LSET.

15th Anniversary (1992-2007).
Proclamations and resolutions recognizing 15 years of LSET programming and 709 alumni members world-wide were presented by city councils, county commissioners’ courts, chambers of commerce and other organizations throughout all nine counties of Southeast Texas during 2007.