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This complimentary publication is for students, true professionals, and best-self leaders who value planning for life, personal leadership and professional development, and service to others. To receive free alerts of new posts, sign up today!

Life Leaders America is a 501 (c)(3) public service charitable organization, registered in Alabama, serving students, teachers, and other professionals world-wide. We are supported by volunteers and funding partners who provide grants, donations, and services.

Journal Editor Dr. David Dyson is founder, trustee, and president of Life Leaders. David loves to help people plan and lead in life and he loves to care for and work with animals on the farm.


Life Leaders Journal content includes positive quotations that inspire and inform, principles and best practices you can use, and more you can share serving others:

Wooden on Leadership

Wooden on Leadership

“We’re all absolutely equal in having the opportunity to make the most of what we have.” –Coach John Wooden   Coach Wooden is considered by many to be one of the leading coaches of all time. His Success Pyramid has been widely read and taught. To do our best is part of the purpose of […]
5 Best Practices of Leaders taught by Dr. Dionne Rosser-Mims

5 Best Practices of Leaders taught by Dr. Dionne Rosser-Mims

Model the Way Inspire a Shared Vision Challenge the Process Enable others to Act Encourage the Heart Dr. Dionne Rosser-Mims taught these key practices for teachers and other leaders at the Troy University Leadership Conference 2018, which focused on developing people and celebrating Black History Month. She cited concepts and administered the Leadership Practices Inventory […]
Answer 7 Questions to Set an Achievable Resolution

Answer 7 Questions to Set an Achievable Resolution

Over 50% of people who set resolutions quit before succeeding. This 7-Step Process for planning an achievable resolution will increase your chances of success. Consider what result you want and need. Consider what characteristic you have that, if developed, could make you more capable. Shifting Focus Resolutions people set in recent decades included goals like […]
How to be “really happy”–Albert Schweitzer

How to be “really happy”–Albert Schweitzer

“I don’t know what your destiny will be, but one thing I know, is the only ones among you who will be really happy are those who have sought, and found how to serve.” Albert Schweitzer
Measure of a Man–Martin Luther King

Measure of a Man–Martin Luther King

The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy. Martin Luther King, Jr.  
Three Responsibilities of a Leader–Max de Pree

Three Responsibilities of a Leader–Max de Pree

“The first responsibility of a leader is to define reality. The last is to say thank you. In between, the leader is a servant.” Max De Pree Max De Pree Center for Leadership
Make Setbacks Opportunities–T.D. Jakes

Make Setbacks Opportunities–T.D. Jakes

Make life’s interruptions your opportunities. T.D. Jakes One of the quotations recommended by Dr. Dionne Rosser-Mims, Associate Dean, College of Education, Troy University, and Co-chair, Women and Leadership Affinity Group Conference   Application I appreciate Dr. Rosser-Mims sharing one of her favorite quotations and the inspiration behind it. Learning to plan and implement is important, though, sometimes, […]

3 Things Leaders Must Know

Know where the group needs to go. Effective leaders have a vision for the group. Know how to get there. Leaders must know the road that leads to the destination. Know how to get others to follow. Others may help a leader do the first two things. But when it comes to getting people to […]
Listening can help you get inside a soul–Ann Kline

Listening can help you get inside a soul–Ann Kline

“When you give somebody your full attention and listen to them completely, you hear more than just their words; you discover their feelings and emotions and you get inside their soul.” -Ann Henry Kline- Cited in Listening Effectively: Achieving High Standards in Communication by John A. Kline  
Courage to Create a New Comfort Zone–Thomas Fuller

Courage to Create a New Comfort Zone–Thomas Fuller

Many of us hold back, sometimes unconsciously, on pursuing dreams–because of fear. We sometimes dwell on possible negative outcomes like failure or embarrassment. Seminar students often say, they stay in their “comfort zones” too much because of “what people might think” if they tried something special. They also admit they hesitate when seeking goals outside their […]
Read about Independence Day to enrich your Celebration

Read about Independence Day to enrich your Celebration

  As we celebrate Independence Day, remember appreciation of Veterans and families, including those since 1776, and share with others the national history that: America’s Veterans Day was born in Birmingham and Advanced in Alabama. To share more with a teacher or another patriot, they can read about how Veterans Day started and the summary […]
Never be Angry at What You can Change

Never be Angry at What You can Change

“Two things a man should never be angry at: what he can help and what he cannot help.” -Thomas Fuller-
Greatest Use of Life–William James

Greatest Use of Life–William James

“The greatest use of life is for something that will outlast it.” – William James – William James, philosopher, psychologist, and trained as a physician, was the first educator to offer a psychology course in the United States. More. Life Leaders helps people identify their greatest use of life through plan for life workshops and online […]

Definite Purpose–Napoleon Hill

“There is one quality which one must possess to win, and that is definiteness of purpose, the knowledge of what one wants, and a burning desire to possess it.” Napoleon Hill, author of The Law of Success and Think and Grow Rich To identify one’s calling not only provides greater clarity on purpose but also […]
Financial Fitness Planbook–Smith & Dyson

Financial Fitness Planbook–Smith & Dyson

Do your goals or resolutions include wanting to improve your financial life–one of the 7 Areas of Life that adds freedom for most other areas or holds us back? Life Leaders, led by Melvin Carrington Smith and David Dyson, developed an eight-page workbook for financial planning workshops at the Alabama Money Expo May 20. Or, […]
Your Best Victory–Plato

Your Best Victory–Plato

“The first and best victory is to conquer self.” Plato   7 Best Practices for Life Leadership Continuum and 7 Areas of Life Best-Self Leadership is the first best practice to plan and lead in life. Joan Dunn donated to Life Leaders a box of books on leadership and professional development Stretch valued. A few folders […]
Daily Questions to Inspire You

Daily Questions to Inspire You

By Dr. David Dyson citing and remembering lessons from Col. Stretch Dunn Did I make someone a hero today? Would our Lord say, “well done my good and faithful servant…?” Would my mama be proud? Col. Stretch Dunn (USA Retired) asked himself these three questions at the end of the day to help make sure he […]

Callings can be Developed

Callings can be discovered through significant experience. Most people seem to want this approach to have an “aha” experience and know your callings. Callings can be discovered through proactive effort. They often come into focus through prayers and plans. Pray and Listen, then write what you hear. Review your plan daily, and over time you will […]
When Moral Injury Holds you Back

When Moral Injury Holds you Back

by Dr. David Dyson and Col. Stretch Dunn (USA Ret) When people set resolutions at New Years or other times of inspiration or decision, the solutions usually require action though often we overlook the requirement to address our beliefs that either support or sabotage our success. “Moral injury” is one of the sources of setback […]
Draft the Constitution of You on Constitution Day

Draft the Constitution of You on Constitution Day

U.S. Constitution and Citizenship Day September 17 The founding fathers believed in writing The Constitution of the United States to inspire and guide the country. They took action to draft this forward-thinking document. The same principles call on us to write constitutions to lead our lives, families, and organizations. The Constitution of You: Draft Your Constitution Thursday, […]
Earning Empowerment Takes Action

Earning Empowerment Takes Action

True Empowerment comes from earning it by individuals, teams, families, and organizations–and about society providing opportunity. Empowerment Week starts Friday for the City of Birmingham, with nicknames such as Magic City, Freedom City, and more. We believe a balance of education, service, and commemoration is best. If you want to invest in your capacity to […]
Earn Empowerment Seminar September 10, 2015, Birmingham by Dr. David Dyson & Col. Stretch Dunn

Earn Empowerment Seminar September 10, 2015, Birmingham by Dr. David Dyson & Col. Stretch Dunn

Freedom to Flourish: Earning Empowerment in support of YOU and Empowerment Week This program offers tangible concepts and best practices for how to earn empowerment. Starting September 11, events of service and commemoration are sponsored by the City of Birmingham. Thursday, September 10, 2015 5:30 Refreshments & Networking; 6-7 Seminar & Announcements Summary Schedule 5:30-6 p.m. Refreshments, Networking, Seating 6-7 p.m. Seminar […]
Noah Galloway Presented Army Ornament by Col. and Mrs. Barefield

Noah Galloway Presented Army Ornament by Col. and Mrs. Barefield

Colonel (Retired) Bob and Nancy Barefield (right) presented a commemorative Army ornament to Sergeant (Retired) Noah Galloway at the Second Annual Alabama Veterans Reunion Appreciation Dinner in Tuscaloosa on August 29th. Noah was the Keynote Speaker at the sold-out event. A double-amputee from wounds in combat, Noah inspires as a speaker as he did as […]
Life Leaders Year-End Celebration with Roman Street

Life Leaders Year-End Celebration with Roman Street

Life Leaders Year-End Celebration of purpose, progress, plans, & people benefiting public programs for teachers, students, veterans, & the public Featuring Roman Street Music http://www.romanstreet.com Social + Supper + Short Program on Progress & Plans + Concert Tuesday Evening ♦ December 15, 2015 Moonlight on the Mountain ♦ Hoover, Alabama Expanding Community Support and Service You can get Life Leaders announcements and articles first on […]
Life Leaders Institute and Roman Street Music

Life Leaders Institute and Roman Street Music

The Roman Street Concert and Life Leaders support was a big success–great music and fellowship in a full room at Moonlight on the Mountain. The band thanked Life Leaders for attracting so many in the audience and told the group of the young guitarists playing at Life Leaders seminars and other events even before Roman […]

Life Leaders Members & Friends attending Roman Street Concert August 13 in Hoover, Alabama

Doors open 6:45 pm. (2 sets with short break, end time estimated at 9). Admission $20 Advance: http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/2049252 Day of show: Cash at the door (if tickets available—est. 30 remaining) Concert attendees can bring beverage and /or food (concessions not sold). Moonlight on the Mountain 585 Shades Crest Road (Bluff Park Shopping Center) www.moonlightonthemtn.com Roman Street Booking Agent: Patty […]
Mission and Vision

Mission and Vision

A key Best-Self Leadership practice is to Plan for Life, including identifying your mission and vision for your life and your organization. What is your purpose? What are the desired results fulfilling your purpose? If you review these regularly, you will write and internalize your goals better.  And, if you share your mission and vision with […]

Earning Empowerment Seminar to help kick off Empowerment Week

Next Life Leaders Seminar in Birmingham Area: Thursday, September 10 Earning Empowerment David@LifeLeadersInstitute.org
Spiritual Purpose and Plan Seminar August 6, 2015

Spiritual Purpose and Plan Seminar August 6, 2015

You are invited to write and improve  Your Spiritual Purpose and Plan Seminar & Workshop by Bishop Dr. Bernard Omukubah & Dr. David Dyson The 7 Areas of Life – The Purpose of Life – Your Mission Statement – Callings, Gifts & Talents – Freedom to Choose: Summarize Goals & Plans for Spiritual Life & other areas on a Plan […]
Independence Day Seminar & Social June 30, 2015, 5:30-7 p.m.

Independence Day Seminar & Social June 30, 2015, 5:30-7 p.m.

You are invited to Commemorate Independence Day Tuesday, June 30, 5:30-7 p.m. & improve your plan for independence and freedom for you and others. 5:30-6 p.m. Social & Refreshments 6-7 p.m. Seminar & Meetings Seminar by Dr. David Dyson and Col. Stretch Dunn (USA Ret) Birmingham Area, Mtn. Brook, 201 Office Park, First Financial Group Seminar Room, 3rd floor, hosted by Melvin […]
Life Leaders Seminar featuring video clips by Dr. Covey

Life Leaders Seminar featuring video clips by Dr. Covey

The Life Leaders seminar included video clips of Dr. Stephen Covey on “Choosing Success” and “Freedom to choose our responses….” Dr. Covey was our featured speaker in 1993 at our first of three National Leadership Seminars where he presented from his new best-selling book, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. Dr. Dyson provided handouts […]

Freedom to Respond Better

We have freedom to choose our response to what happens. That’s a lesson from Dr. Stephen Covey on a video I shared with Life Leaders at the monthly seminar and meeting. We can choose character development more than personality. We should include character development in our goals to be better instead of just appear better. […]

Life Leaders Evening Seminar and Meeting

Flourish More Choosing Success and Developing Character and Competence + Progress on Public Programs to Advance Citizens and City… Thursday, June 4, 5:45-7 PM 201 Office Park (3rd floor), First Financial Group Seminar Room, hosted by Melvin Carrington Smith, Sr. Register to reserve your spot and handouts http://lifeleaders.us/attend.php (recommended) or Info@LifeLeaders.us No charge for attending–sponsored by […]

Life Leaders Mentioned in Story of Star’s Journey Home Published on Animal News Site

http://www.alanimals.com/wp/5000-miles-to-bring-my-horse-to-sweet-home-alabama-2/ www.alanimals.com

Life Leaders May 7 Meeting Central Alabama

What we plan to do Thursday: 5:45-6: Arrive for fellowship, water, coffee (team arrives at 5) 6-6:30: Introductions, Prayer, Pledge, Seminar    Mission: Melvin Carrington Smith, Sr., VP & Trustee Prayer: Bishop Dr. Bernard Omukubah Pledge of Allegiance: Col. Bob Barefield (USA Ret) Short Seminar: Dr. David Dyson When we need to “Go for It” in Life (even […]

Life Leaders Monthly Meeting 1st Thursday After 5

For members, partners, and guests–a short seminar on best-self leadership and planning for one or more of the 7 Areas of Life plus Progress and Plans for one or more public service programs. Draft of what we plan to do: 5:45-6: Arrive for fellowship, water, coffee (team arrives at 5) 6-6:30: Prayer, Pledge, Life Leaders at Lunch Seminar Summary […]

Leadership and Empowerment Concepts and a Short Seminar

Dr. Ken Blanchard taught in “Situational Leadership” courses and books as well as  at our seminar in 1994 that we should choose different leadership approaches with people at different levels of “maturity” and we should even choose different leadership approaches with the same person–if maturity is high, “delegate,” though for a new role “tell.” He inspired part of […]

7 Components of Attitude & Ability to Develop to Earn Empowerment

Summary Concept for Leaders and Professionals to Improve Empowerment A leader using the Dyson Empowerment Model will consider trust level for the 7 components of Attitude and of Ability to assess whether to delegate or direct for a particular role. The true professional anticipates what the leader expects, assesses self, outlines a plan for keeping […]

Life Leaders at Lunch March 26 Birmingham Area

Life Leaders at Lunch Earning and Delegating Empowerment Thursday, March 26, 2015, 11:45-1 / 201 Office Park Circle Public Service Seminar / $10 includes lunch Faculty: Dr. David Dyson, author of the Empowerment Model Chair: DeWayne Taylor, Alabama Power Company Host: Melvin Carrington Smith, Sr., First Financial Group Example: a young professional earned preparation/promotion 3 years faster Handout: you […]

$20,000 Challenge Grant will help Life Leaders provide programs for teachers, students, veterans, citizens…

Life Leaders Challenge Grant When Life Leaders receives $20,000 in new grants and donations for our public service programs, funding will double thanks to a matching grant of $20,000 from the Daniel Foundation of Alabama. Your tax-deductible donation–and/or advocacy to a person, corporation, or foundation who can partner–is needed NOW so we can implement programs for teachers and students, […]

True Professional

“True Professional: person who seeks mastery and earned empowerment through trust in character and competence, preparing and persisting to develop fitness and habits to do the harder right well—instinctively—even under stress.”  –Dunn & Dyson www.ProfessionalismUnderStress.com

Member and Partner Meeting Moved to Thursday, March 12

The weather warnings for tomorrow suggest we likely can have a better meeting in a week, Thursday, March 12—same time, place, and program—instead of tomorrow, March 5. Your safety comes first. I recall we had to postpone a week last year due to weather. We can adapt. Those of you planning to attend our Life […]

Life Leaders Meeting March 5 for Members, Partners, Guests

Life Leaders Monthly Evening Meeting For members, partners, and guests interested in our seminars and/or public service programs. What we plan to do: 5:45-6: Arrive for fellowship, water, coffee (team arrives at 5) 6-6:30: Introductions and Member Sample Plan Welcome and mission for the meeting: Melvin Carrington Smith, Sr., VP and Trustee Prayer: Bishop Dr. Bernard Omukubah Pledge […]

President Bush and JD Simpson of Three Hots and A Cot

Life Leaders congratulates Three Hots and A Cot Veterans Center and J.D. Simpson, founder. President Bush and J.D. paused from their recent work in Texas for this photo. President Bush is leading a national project to improve veterans services nationally. During the conference (2015, Feb), J.D. presented to President Bush a Program Description for our program, Veterans […]

Radio Show Feb. 24, 2015

8:40 a.m. The Lou in the Morning Radio Show based in South Alabama, North Florida, and online will host David today to tell more of Life Leaders Programs. We will likely focus on Plan for School and Life and Veterans Making Comebacks. http://www.louvickery.com/     http://www.wpflradio.com/

Plan to Stretch Your Mind

“Man’s mind, stretched to a new idea, never goes back to its original dimension.” Oliver Wendell Holmes When we push ourselves to expand beyond routine, we expand our capacities. Significant events, experiences, education can change us–over time, so can seemingly small improvements in attitude, fitness, and use of time. You likely know people who went […]
Plato on Life Leadership

Plato on Life Leadership

“The first and best victory is to conquer self.”  Plato  

Life Leaders at Lunch March

Save the date: Thursday, March 12, 11:45-1. More to follow. For more info about Life Leaders, the nonprofit organization dedicated to helping city, state, and citizens to PLAN and LEAD in LIFE to flourish at our callings: www.LifeLeaders.us

March Member Meeting

Save the date for March 5 for the next meeting for members and guests, 5:45-7 p.m.

Life Leaders Meeting Tonight February 5

The Life Leaders monthly meeting is tonight for members, prospective members, and friends interested in our seminars and/or public service programs. Reservations are still coming in, so if you have not responded you can do so today. If you made a reservation on our new system, you should have received a confirmation. This is what we plan to […]

Life Leaders Lapel Pin

These new lapel pins go to members upon joining or renewing membership. Members get additional invitations and news. Member fees support seminars, meetings, and services. Melvin Carrington Smith, Sr. serves as Membership Chair and Vice President.  

Life Leaders News and Invitations for Jan-Feb

Welcome new members: DeWayne Taylor, Alabama Power Jarren Shields, Alabama Power Darryl Ward, Synovus Mortgage Next meeting: Thursday evening, February 5 Next seminar: Thursday lunch, February 12, meal by Tasiki’s. Seminar requested: writing and using a Professional Plan (7 Areas of Plan, Assess, Reward…earning empowerment…)

Veterans Making Comebacks Creed

Veterans Making Comebacks Creed I look in the mirror to assess who I am and who I am called to be… write goals and resolutions to improve my plans, my habits, myself… admit, accept, and act to build stronger trust with myself and with others… focus on my callings, choices, and commitment to lead my […]

Life Leaders at Lunch

*New Lunch Time offering: Thursday, January 22 Goals for the 7 Areas of Life & 7 Steps to Set a Resolution Designed and presented by Dr. David Dyson founder of Life Leaders, co-author of Professionalism Under Stress with Col. Stretch Dunn, USA Ret; author of Presidential Priorities and Suggestions for Successful Living More info: David@LifeLeadersInstitute.org […]

Life Leaders Members meeting January 15 to develop Plans

Important Meeting Thursday for Members, Prospective Members, and Interested Friends Dear Prospective Members and Interested Friends of Life Leaders, You are invited to participate in our first meeting of the year to review and improve purpose and plans this Thursday after work, January 15. Life Leaders is hosting a meeting for members and interested friends at […]
Veteran Making a Comeback with Improved Plans

Veteran Making a Comeback with Improved Plans

Photo 1: Oscar Waldheim pinned Anthony Ray Harris for completing his three deliverables for Course 1 of Veterans Making Comebacks: writing Goals for the 7 Areas of Life, a Resolution to Master a Goliath, and an assessment of problems and solutions. Mr. Harris is a resident at Ryan Winslow House of Three Hots and A […]

Founder of National Veterans Day Street Sign Dedicated

You can see the new street sign dedicated to the Founder of National Veterans Day in front of Birmingham’s City Hall and across from the Monument to Raymond Weeks in Linn Park. National Veterans Day proposed this sign initiated by Mark Ryan. The City Council led the way. Mayor William Bell approved. Councilwoman Kim Rafferty […]

Radio Show with Lou Vickery

The Lou in the Morning Radio Show based in South Alabama and North Florida hosted me today to update his listeners on a few Life Leaders Programs: Plan for School and Life: pilot classes we launched in three schools on Freedom, Character Traits, and Planning for School and Life. Veterans Making Comebacks: helping veterans improve […]

National Veterans Day Parade Banner

November 11, 1:30 p.m.–Parade in downtown Birmingham near City Hall. Life Leaders designed and donated the new lead banner for the parade to tell parade watchers and TV viewers that Veterans Day started in Alabama. Thanks to supporters of Life Leaders who make service and contribution possible.

Tribute to the Founder of Veterans Day, November 10, Birmingham

Tribute to the Founder of Veterans Day, November 10, 4:30-5 p.m. Birmingham / Linn Park Public Event Organizer: Col. Bob Barefield Emcee and Speaker: Dr. David Dyson Call to Action Speaker: Mayor William Bell Color Guard, Riderless Horse, Flame of Freedom

Tribute to the Founder of Veterans Day

Patriotism in Action Tribute to the Founder of National Veterans Day Raymond Weeks takes place annually on November 10, 430-5 p.m., in Birmingham’s Linn Park. Patriotism in Action means more than feeling Old Glory in our heart, more than attending events and parades–it means taking action to develop ourselves and serve. Patriotism in Action applies […]

Radio Host Lou Vickery / Lou in the Morning interviewed Dr. David Dyson

Friday morning, October 24, 8:05 a.m. Radio Host Lou Vickery / Lou in the Morning interviewed Dr. David Dyson WPFL Radio 105.1 / Radio listening: South Alabama & North Florida Listen online worldwide at http://www.louvickery.com/ Topics featured on www.LifeLeaders.us

Birmingham City Hall: Mayor Bell took 100 Life Leaders posters to tell the story of National Veterans Day in city buildings.

National Veterans Day was founded in Alabama 1947. Yesterday, I saw these posters next to elevators and in protected sign cases. The photos are of Eisenhower and National Veterans Day founder Raymond Weeks, plus our own Patriotism in Action book showing Reagan and Weeks. Alabama character traits are associated with this history, plus freedom…. Go […]

Mayor Bell To Speak At Life Leaders Event

Mayor Bell will speak at the Life Leaders event presented November 10 in Birmingham’s Linn Park, 4:30-5: Patriotism In Action Tribute to the Founder of National Veterans Day. Free public event. Col. Bob Barefield (USA Ret.), Chairman

Patriotism in Action Tribute at the Raymond Weeks Monument

On November 10, 4:30-5 p.m., Life Leaders will host the annual Patriotism in Action Tribute at the Raymond Weeks Monument in Birmingham’s Linn Park. This is a free public event. Mayor Bell will provide our Call to Action. Dr. David Dyson will emcee. Col. Bob Barefield is organizing. This event kicks off National Veterans Day. […]

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