In 1990 the Board of Directors of Loudoun Volunteer Services, under the direction of Barbara Dutton, then located in the Department of Extension Services, developed a leadership training program after recognizing the need for a network of current and potential community leaders. They enlisted the cooperation of the Loudoun Chamber of Commerce, Loudoun County Government, and the Virginia Tech Institute for Community Leadership in the formation of a Leadership Loudoun Steering Committee.
The Leadership Loudoun Steering Committee, composed of 18 community representatives, adopted by-laws and formed a Board of Directors. The first class started in 1991 with 35 participants.
Today, Leadership Loudoun is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization. Criteria for nominees entering the program include: management and professional experience; history of community involvement in Loudoun County or their last geographic location; and the potential for long-term commitment to the Loudoun region. A broad mix of current and emerging leaders from both the public and private sectors take part in Leadership Loudoun.
Leadership Loudoun is one of many cities and localities throughout the nation that conduct leadership programs.