Rising Stars Leadership Program

The YWCA Rising Star Leadership Program empowers and equips high-performing women to become equity leaders.  This unique development experience strengthens leadership skills and prepares participants for non-profit board service while connecting them to a powerful network of accomplished female leaders.

Sessions are facilitated by local and national experts and cover a wide variety of topics from building executive skills to balancing career, board, and home life. In the spirit of the YWCA’s pioneering history of leading racial justice initiatives, the program presents very direct and specific training on eliminating discrimination and promoting racial and gender equity. Graduates join a diverse network of recipients with access to exclusive networking and educational opportunities.


YWCA Board Registry

Graduates of the Rising Stars Leadership Program are certified by the YWCA as ready-to-serve local boards and are added to the YWCA’s Board Registry. Area organizations are able to share their board openings on our registry by contacting Kristi Rohrkasse at (513) 361-2168 or krohrkasse@ywcacin.org.


Since 2002, the YWCA has been recognizing outstanding young professional female leaders as Rising Stars in our community. The Rising Stars Leadership Program was started in 2007 to further empower our future and present female leaders with generous support from the Greater Cincinnati Foundation and the Barbara Lindsey Memorial Fund.

Participation Requirements

  • Between the ages of 25-40
  • Nomination by a current/former member of the YWCA board, Academy member of Career Women of Achievement, or a Rising Star Leadership Program graduate
  • An outstanding performer with proven leadership qualities and recognized potential to attain achievement in her career
  • Demonstrates community involvement and commitment to social equity


We are grateful to the Charlotte R. Schmidlapp Fund, Fifth Third Bank, Trustee; and Katy Hollister & Deloitte for funding support of the YWCA Rising Star Leadership Program. We are also indebted to Kathy Beechem for her inspirational and dedicated leadership.



For more information or questions regarding the Rising Star Leadership Program, email krohrkasse@ywcacin.org.