Largest & most diverse group in program history tackles leading amid transition & uncertainty

The San Antonio Area Foundation, in partnership with HOLT CAT’s exclusive training curriculum, kick off our area’s premiere executive leadership program on June 3.

More than two dozen nonprofit agency top bosses have been selected to participate in this year’s training program, being held in a virtual environment due to the ongoing pandemic.

With 29 participants, the 2021 HOLT Advanced Leadership Program will include its most diverse and largest group in its five-year history offering executive-level cohort training programs. Due to heavy community interest and in response to the ongoing impact of the coronavirus epidemic, this year’s program will include some significant tweaks.

Cathy Valdez, Executive Director of Project MEND

The overall program has been streamlined to better fit limited schedules as well as to follow CDC guidelines. This year it will uniquely focus on growing top-notch leadership skills specifically during times of duress and need for innovation such as the one we’ve been experiencing under COVID-19. Another significant change is expanding the participant pool to not just recently appointed CEOs and senior managers but also to their more experienced counterparts looking to recharge.

“We are pleased to offer this exclusive program through our strong partnership with HOLT CAT to ensure talented leaders in our community have the tools to build resiliency and lead their organizations during this trying time of transition,” said Sandie Palomo-Gonzalez, who oversees the Area Foundation’s Learning and Development program.

This year’s program begins on Thursday, June 3 and is scheduled to go through Nov. 12. Twice-monthly sessions will focus on key leadership training areas such as exploring “emotional intelligence,” conflict resolution, strategic planning, and “ethical persuasion,” among others. Instruction will be led by HOLT’s Guy Clumpner.

“HOLT CAT is honored to invest in education and workforce development efforts throughout the communities we serve and proud of our extensive partnership with the San Antonio Area Foundation,” said Clumpner, President of HOLT Development Services. “We are excited to share our values-based learning curriculum with this diverse group of nonprofit community leaders.”

The decision to include veteran leaders in the program came from strong community demand. Established agency bosses such as Cathy Valdez, Executive Director of Project MEND, see themselves as lifelong learners – particularly in terms of needing to know best practices for leading during times of crisis and unprecedented transition.

“I was thrilled to find out that I was picked!” exclaimed Valdez. “This training program is well-known and respected in the nonprofit community and provides a unique opportunity to learn and share leadership techniques with a group of your peers in a safe space.”

More information about the HOLT Advanced Leadership Training program and other professional development opportunities offered by the Area Foundation can be found here.


JeffreyArndtVIA Metropolitan Transit
ElaineBennettGuadalupe Regional Medical Foundation
KateCareyMcNay Art Museum
ChristinaCasellaSA Youth
Yvonne De La RosaTeatro Artes de Juan Seguin
SarahDingivanSA Legal Services Association
MarkEadsSunshine Cottage
LaurenGeraghtyCommunities in Schools San Antonio
Ben HackettYouth Orchestras of San Antonio
Dr. MiltonHarris100 Black Men of San Antonio, Inc.
Dr. RosalindHarrisStudents in Christ’s Youth Center, Inc.
CarrieKimbellSA Golf Association – First Tee Greater San Antonio
AnneKinseyAlamo Heights Mules Cycling Team 
StaceyKline SchwartzSan Antonio Jewish Senior Services 
CurtisLindesayCibolo Enrichment Foundation
AllisonMartinezChild Advocates San Antonio
DonaldMasonClassical Music Institute
JoshuaMirelesHouse of Neighborly Service
RebeccaNajeraMartinez Street Women’s Center
MarthaOlivos-GonzalezTexas A&M University SA
LoriPriceYouth Code Jam
LaurenPriestasHopecam, Inc.
ErnestoRosalesDreams Foundation for Children
JulieStrentzsch, PhDRoy Maas Youth Alternatives
MaryThorsbyABODE Contemplative Care for the Dying
AlexandraTorresChildren’s Alliance of South Texas
Rachel TrevinoMcNay Art Museum
CathyValdezProject MEND
KatieVelaSouth Alamo Regional Alliance for the Homeless 

About the San Antonio Area Foundation: 

The San Antonio Area Foundation has served as the city’s community-giving headquarters for nearly 60 years, growing to become one of the top 20 foundations in the nation based on asset size. The Area Foundation helps donors achieve their charitable goals, managing more than 500 charitable funds topping $1 billion in assets. Beyond serving hundreds of nonprofit organizations each year through its grantmaking, the agency operates a strong student scholarship program – to the tune of over $37 million since 1969 through more than 100 scholarship funds. Learn more at

HOLT CAT® sells, rents and services Caterpillar® machines, engines, generator sets and trucks in a 118-county Texas territory spanning from the Red River to the Rio Grande. HOLT offers total machine and engine rebuild capabilities, sells used equipment around the world and fabricates its own line of land clearing equipment and HOLT Spray King® water tankers. 

About HOLT CAT: 

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Other HOLT divisions include HOLT Crane & Equipment, Texas First Rentals, HOLT Manufacturing, SITECH Tejas, Sullair of Houston, HOLT Truck Centers, HOLT Renewables, and HOLT Used. HOLT is a family-owned company, headquartered in San Antonio, Texas. The Holt name has been associated with heavy equipment and Caterpillar for over 100 years. HOLT CAT Chief Executive Officer, Peter J. Holt and HOLT CAT President, Corinna Holt Richter, are direct descendants of Benjamin Holt, who in 1904 developed the first successful track-type tractor which he named the “Caterpillar.” Since 1988, HOLT has embraced Values-Based Leadership® to form its company culture, which has helped the HOLT name become synonymous with quality, integrity and commitment to customer service. For more information, visit