Family Service Alumna Jill Hufnagel Presents Adaptive Leadership


Who is Jill?

Jill Hufnagel is many things–a mother, counselor, Roanokian, and, oh yeah, an international expert on leadership!

She’s also a staff alumni of Family Service of Roanoke Valley, providing services at the agency early in her career. 

“It was while there working with couples and individuals that I honed the skills I put to use today in leadership development,” she said.

Now, she is offering those skills to leaders throughout the Roanoke Valley in a unique leadership workshop on Thursday, February 22 and Friday, February 23 at the Roanoke Symphony Orchestra Green Room in downtown Roanoke. More information is available online. To learn why this is an opportunity you should really take advantage of, read on…

What is adaptive leadership?

Focusing on adaptive leadership and case-in-point learning, Jill has worked with Google, Microsoft, New York Fire Department, and organizations across the globe. Her clients include Fortune 500 companies, tech firms and financial institutions, school districts and healthcare organizations, as well as both federal government and global governing organizations.

Jill defines “adaptive challenges” as those we face as a community and country of which there is no known solution. She said the keys to addressing these challenges include relationships, experimentation and willingness to try.

“Personally and professionally, exposure to adaptive leadership

radically changed the way I think about community challenges.”

Through her work, Jill provides consultation on these types of unwieldy challenges. The leadership programming she designs and develops is built on deep capacity development and possibility thinking.

In addition to her e-book “Teachable Moments of Leadership,” her writing has appeared in The Kansas Leadership Center’s Journal, The Spin, and the International Leadership Association’s Building Bridges. Jill began her career working for the Secretary of the U.S Senate, has served on the faculty at Harvard’s Kennedy School and works as a senior consultant with Cambridge Leadership Associates. 

Jill addresses the question: how do we adapt our leadership to address the hardest, complex issues we face?

Through the immersive leadership experience being offered by Jill right here in Roanoke, you can learn a new way of handling complex challenges and responding to change. You will also walk away with a new peer group who speak the same language as you all return to your places of work and your roles in the community!

How do I get involved?

Through IGNITE: Leadership with a Purpose, Jill sees the possibility of creating a group of people who share the ideas of adaptive leadership and are influential in her home community. She thinks now is the perfect time to introduce this training, as Roanoke is continuing to develop as a strong, resilient, purpose-driven city.

“This is a great opportunity to think about how to share adaptive leadership with a group of people I care about–and that is Family Service of Roanoke Valley,” she said.

Jill, pictured left for a Family Service staff badge in 2002, took her early career as a counselor at Family Service and turned it into a lifetime of helping others set goals to better themselves and their communities.

She is donating her time to present Adaptive Leadership as a gift to Family Service, and the proceeds from the training go to support mental health counseling, case management and life skills education in Roanoke. Family Service is also in the process of developing a training curriculum for direct service providers, so registering for IGNITE is also a way to invest in training the next generation of care providers.

Family Service is excited to offer Jill’s innovative framework to Roanoke.

“Adaptive Leadership is such an exciting concept for the leaders of our Valley,” said Director Karen Pillis. “We often go to leadership courses that give us tools to analyze ourselves, our organizations and maybe even our communities. I am excited that Adaptive Leadership will give those who attend a new way of looking at the complex issues we all face, the concept of change, and how to move forward in the midst of issues that we may be ‘stuck’ addressing.”

Jill believes the work of leadership is about changing your corner of the world and as such is everyone’s to claim. Claim your seat today and register online at www.fsrv.orgor contact Karen Pillis at or 540-563-5316 x3030 if you have any questions.