Do You Know the Next Liberty Fellow?

In South Carolina’s 46 counties, there are dynamic, grassroots leaders who have the drive, proven success, and desire to make a difference. The hitch is they can’t nominate themselves. Nominators play a critical role. Candidates should be nominated by someone who understands the Liberty Fellowship criteria and knows them and their work well.

Ideal nominees have achieved considerable professional success. They are at an inflection point where they are ready to step up and lead to create a broader impact statewide. If you think you know the next Liberty Fellow, explore our nomination criteria and process in more detail.

Nomination Criteria

Liberty Fellowship nominees must:

Be a South Carolina resident

Be between the ages of 30 and 47

Be intellectually curious and open to ideas

Be an accomplished leader with a history of significant community engagement

Be at an “inflection point,” willing to reflect deeply on their leadership role in society

Be willing to challenge existing normative behaviors with actionable ideas to create positive change

Have a breadth of experience and level of maturity that will enable them to contribute effectively to the seminar experience by listening to and learning from their peers

Each class of Fellows is comprised of individuals who represent a range of attributes including gender, geography, race, religion, sexual orientation, disability, ideology and political affiliation. We will not accept nominees who express hate or intolerance toward others based on their particular ideas or identities.

Nomination Process

Nomination Form

Nominations for the Class of 2025 will be accepted from March 1 – July 1, 2023.

About 100 new candidates are nominated each year. In addition to new nominees, all previous nominees are considered as long as they are age-eligible (under the age of 48). For any class, as many as 400-600 candidates might be in the pool for consideration.

Interviews

After our nomination cycle concludes, our team reviews all new and existing nominations and selects candidates for interviews with our CEO, Ann Marie Stieritz.

Our interview process takes several months. We do not give out information prior to the final selection, so we respectfully ask nominators and candidates to be patient. Once we have made our final selection, we let every nominator and their candidate know the outcome.

Class Selection

When selecting our Fellows classes, we aim for a true vibrant mosaic. There are more bright and competent candidates than spots available. A critical task is to weave together the strongest candidates in a class that–as a whole–reflects South Carolina in all its rich diversity.

Considerations include creating an optimum cross section of gender, geographic, urban/rural, political, social, occupational and ethnic characteristics. Each Fellow should have something to teach and to learn from the other.

Frequently Asked Questions

Our nomination cycle runs from March 1 through July 1 every two years. Our next nomination cycle will begin on March 1, 2023, for the Class of 2025.

South Carolina residents between the ages of 30 and 47 are eligible. The nominee must not have turned 48 by January 1st in the year the Class selection is made.

None. Education of Fellows ranges from no college degree to post-doctoral work.

There are no specific employment requirements. However, the majority of each class comes from the business sector.

Successful nominees will have a history of meaningful civic and community engagement that includes positions of leadership. We are looking for candidates who are at an “inflection point”- looking toward the broader role they might take on in their communities. By this we mean that they are ready and able to pause, re-evaluate the things that matter to them most, and dedicate time and energy to making a difference.

Successful nominees will have a history of meaningful civic and community engagement that includes positions of leadership.

No. There are no “bonus points” for the credentials of the nominator. All that matters is that you see the potential for leadership and can provide an in-depth look into your nominees’ background, values and readiness to take full advantage of this opportunity. Your answers to the nomination questions are very important. We ask that you share personal details, including struggles or hardships the candidate has had, that you may not normally put into a typical recommendation. The strongest nominations are those that help us understand the candidate’s inflection point and why this is the right time for them to take full advantage of the Fellowship.

Nominees need to have a clear understanding of the required commitment.

Fellows must participate 100% in five multi-day seminars over a period of 18 months. No late arrivals or early departures. No offers of “just missing a bit” or “calling in.”  This may sound difficult, but we now have more than 310 Fellows who have been able to respect this requirement.

Fellows must also complete required readings before the seminars take place. They must identify and initiate a leadership project that will be underway by the end of the seminar experience. Finally, Fellows must be willing at the end of 18 months to articulate and follow through on the actions they will take to make South Carolina a stronger state. An inability to commit to the seminars and the leadership project eliminates candidates for the coming year.

It varies, but about 100 new candidates are nominated each year. In addition to new nominees, all previous nominees are considered as long as they are age-eligible. For any class, as many as 400-600 candidates might be in the pool for consideration.

The good news is that every nominee remains in the active candidate pool until they no longer meet the eligibility requirements. Many nominees are selected three, four or even five years after they were first nominated.

No. However, you are encouraged to submit updates – particularly in the areas of career and community or state engagement – to Kay Oken at [email protected].

This happens. Unfortunately, many highly qualified leaders may not fit the mosaic for a specific year or years. The good news is that they can become a part of the Liberty Fellowship community by making nominations and potentially acting as Mentors.

No. Unfortunately, we are not able to accept nominees who are Fellows of other Aspen Global Leadership Network programs.

We are not currently accepting nominations. We will begin accepting nominations for our next Class on March 1, 2023.