Build your Activist Toolbox

AFGE launches its Leaders and Activists National Training (LEAD) July 16-22 in Chicago.  

The LEAD training model is designed to expand the skills and knowledge needed to build stronger, more effective locals. The training is standardized to ensure that every member who completes a training takes away the foundational knowledge needed to be successful in their role as a union leader.  

The LEAD model is a combination of online, blended, and classroom instruction that progresses from introductory to advanced levels of learning. The tiered levels of learning are outlined below: 

Self-Paced: Instruction is self-paced and there is no instructor. Members can watch videos and complete interactive learning modules independently.  

Level 1: Classes are instructor led and taught by district staff or other certified LEAD local, district, or council trainers. The standardized training can be delivered online or in the classroom. 

Level 2: Classes are face-to-face and taught at the AFGE Leaders and Activists National Training Conference. 

Level 3: Classes target leaders who would like to train to become a mentor and/or a certified AFGE training. 

This year’s training will offer advanced Level 2 classes to members. The intensive four-day classes will use an experimental learning model that is designed to foster an atmosphere of trust and collaboration. Class sizes will be limited to allow time for thoughtful discussion and exchange of ideas. Participants will apply critical thinking and problem-solving skills to complex problems facing our union. 

“We are excited to launch the next phase of our education program,” said AFGE Deputy Director of Education Julie Mendez-DeLeon. “Through the LEAD initiative we can track the training levels completed by our activists, create more self-paced options that accommodate hectic schedules, and deliver excellent in-person trainings around the country.” 

AFGE National President J. David Cox Sr. stressed the importance of the LEAD initiative.  

“Continuing to build strong, effective locals within our union is essential to our growth in the years ahead. By expanding and advancing our training opportunities we are assembling a cohort of activists that will have the fundamental skills needed to combat issues in the workplace, build strong coalitions and ensure that AFGE is Big Enough to Win.” 

More information about the training and the LEAD program can be found at

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