The Coffee County Leadership program is currently accepting applications from community members interested in taking a deeper look into how their county operates in multiple areas.

The program involves panel discussions, group tours of multiple community interest areas, such as education, industry, tourism, nonprofit agencies and more, community service, group projects and more. The professional development program gives participants a front-row seat to the inner workings of the Coffee County community through special access to facility tours and in-depth conversations with community stakeholders. Participants gain a practical and working knowledge and understanding of issues and opportunities facing Coffee County and facilitate communication with current and emerging community leaders.

After a brief hiatus over the last two years, the program has been revived through a collaboration between the Manchester Area Chamber of Commerce and the Tullahoma Area Chamber of Commerce.

The online application is available now through the Manchester chamber’s website, and anyone interested in participating in the program is encouraged to apply. The application can be reached at

Coffee County Leadership board members ask that anyone interested in applying be able to commit fully to the September-to-June program, including the initial retreat scheduled for Sept. 23-24, each monthly program tour day from October to May and the final graduation ceremony June 14, 2022.

The retreat will be held at the University of Tennessee Space Institute. Program tour days will take place from approximately 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. each second Wednesday of the month from October to May. Individual assignments, which are required for graduation, include but are not limited to attendance at city or county government meetings, hiking the local trails at state natural areas or state parks in Coffee County, volunteering for nonprofit events, attending or volunteering at chamber events and more.

Applicants are asked to receive approval from their employer in order to participate. The program carries at $400 financial commitment, which covers the costs associated with all group activities, including the retreat, monthly tour days and graduation.

Applications for the Coffee County Leadership Class of 2022 will be accepted until July 31. The CCL Board will then meet in August to select the class members and make notification to selected candidates.

For questions about Coffee County Leadership, how to apply or what the program entails, please contact either the Manchester chamber at 728-7635 or the Tullahoma chamber at 455-5497.

Staff Writer

Erin McCullough has won awards for her news reporting, community lifestyles and education reporting in the three years she's been a journalist. She is a graduate of the University of Tennessee and currently lives in Tullahoma with her cat, Luna.

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