Leadership Over Lunch

The Leadership Over Lunch series brings CLP alumni, local partners, and regional leaders to Gonzaga to share their leadership journey with students, faculty and staff. With guests ranging in industry, experience, and interest, there is something for everyone!

Join us on Wednesday, March 23

12:00 - 1:00 pm | Hemmingson Room 201, Jundt Lounge

March 2022: Lonnie Newton

Assistant Fire Management Office, Spokane's Bureau of Land Management 

Lonnie Newton is the Assistant Fire Management Officer for Spokane’s Bureau of Land Management, He has been a program manager for a High Reliability Organization (HRO) for 25 yearsLonnie’s leadership journey continually evolves as he manages a hazardous fuels reduction program that includes a variety of treatments. His leadership journey also includes years of experience on the wildland fire line.

Our Most Recent Guests


February 2022: Aaron Jordan

Green Coffee Buyer and Director of Operations, Roast House Coffee

Aaron Jordan is the Green Coffee Buyer and Director of Operations at Roast House Coffee in Spokane, WA. He has led the mission of sourcing organic and fair-trade coffees for nearly 10 years, winning over twenty national awards in the specialty coffee industry. Aaron is most passionate about building businesses with a relentless commitment tovalues, leading teams with equanimity, while promoting sustainability as a collaborative effort within the community.

 Image of Jadrian Tarver

October 2021: Dr. Jadrian Tarver

Teaching Fellow of Music and Applied Voice Instructor, Gonzaga University 

Dr. Jadrian Tarver is a conductor, clinician, and recitalist from Haines City, Florida. He has performed with numerous opera companies and is an advocate for musicians of color. He curated the Sankofa Recital Series, a vocal, artist collaborative that brings awareness to the music of African diasporic composers. He is now a Teaching Fellow of Music and an Applied Voice Instructor at Gonzaga University.




September 2021: Marilyn Vancil

Enneagram Teacher, Spiritual Director & Author

Marilyn Vancil loves to help others discover and walk in their true identity as a unique reflection of God’s image. She is a teacher of the Enneagram and serves as a spiritual director, using the content of her book Self to Lose – Self to Find: Using the Enneagram to Uncover Your True, God-Gifted Self. She is currently writing another book, Come Further In, which will be released in Fall of 2022.


November 2020: Celeste Shaw

Owner, Chaps Bakery

Join us and Celeste Shaw in a discussion of leadership, service, and how food can be used as a form of love and service to others. Celeste is an established business woman in Spokane, known famously for her bakery; Chaps. She has utilized her business to create the “Food is Love” Campaign. The campaign works to provide mentorship and support to hungry children in the Spokane Community. We are thrilled to have Celeste with us to share her stories and passion for nurturing others through cooking.

April 2020: Father Greg Boyle

Founder, Homeboy Industries

Father Greg Boyle is the founder of Homeboy Industries, the largest gang-intervention, rehabilitation, and re-entry program in the world. In the face of law enforcement tactics and criminal justice policies of suppression and mass incarceration as the means to end gang violence, he and a parish adopted what was a radical approach at the time: treat gang members as human beings. He has received the California Peace Prize and been inducted into the California Hall of Fame. In 2014, the White House named Father Boyle a Champion of Change.

February 2020: Thomas Hammer

Founder, Thomas Hammer Coffee

Thomas Hammer, founder of Thomas Hammer Coffee, has worked hard to create a company with an environment that respects diversity, rewards, creative thinking and fosters teamwork. As a Gonzaga alum, Hammer used his leadership to make a name for himself and his company.

November 2019: Tommy Llyod

Assistant Coach, Gonzaga Men's Basketball

Tommy Lloyd is in his 19th season as Assistant Coach for the Gonzaga Men’s Basketball team, joining head coach – Mark Few priot to the 2001-02 season. Gonzaga has reached the NCAA Tournament in each of Lloyd’s 18 season’s on staff, including a first-ever appearance in the national championship game. Lloyd’s knowledge of the European game has been instrumental in placing Gonzaga players overseas, as well as recruiting international players.

October 2019: John Lemus & Sorretie Jaro

Intercultural and Developmental Disability (I-DD) Advocates

John Lemus has worked as a policy and system change advocate for I/DD for 16 years. John is a 2015 graduate of Leadership Spokane and currently serves as the Vice Chair of the Spokane Human Rights Commission, as well as the Activist/Advocate for AtWork! John also works for the University of Washington Center for Human Development & Disability as a Hub Team member of their Autism Echo Project.

Sorretie Jaro is an I/DD advocacy worker in the Spokane community. Sorretie is connected with Developmental Disabilities Ombuds in Spokane and SARTA (Self Advocacy Resource Technical Assistance CenĀ­ter). Sorretie is currently enrolled in a Paralegal Studies program with hopes of working in a disability organization on the legal side of disability advocacy

September 2019: Courtney Law, Ph.D

Director of the Regional Health Partnership, Gonzaga University

Courtney Law, as the Director of the Regional Health Partnership, leads Gonzaga’s efforts with the University of Washington to expand and enhance medical education and research in the Spokane Region, as well as advance health related research, entrepreneurship, and inter-professional health education.

April 2019: Joe Albert, Ph.D

Associate Dean of External Partnerships & Strategic Initiatives for Gonzaga's School of Leadership Studies

Starting at Gonzaga in 1994, Dr. Joe Albert influenced the shaping and development of numerous, unique leadership programs and events on-campus, such as the creating the Comprehensive Leadership Program, Emerging Leaders Program, Leadership & Storytelling, etc. Joe has helped form Gonzaga students through his specialization in storytelling, emotional intelligence, strategic planning, and board and leadership development. 

February 2019: Eckart Preu

Music Director & Conductor of the Spokane Symphony

Eckart Preu has been the Music Director for the Spokane Symphony for the past 15 years. Career highlights include performances at Carnegie Hall, the Sorbonne in Paris, a live broadcast with the Jerusalem Symphony, and his first commercial recording of the world premiere of Letters from Lincoln, a work commissioned by the Spokane Symphony. A native of Germany, Preu came to the United States as the winner of the National Conducting Competition of the German Academic Exchange Service in 1996. 

November 2018: Ronald Reeves

Head of Diversity & Inclusion for AIG

Ronald Reeves is responsible for partnering with AIG's leaders, managers, and employees to design, develop and implement a sustainable and measurable Diversity & Inclusion strategy that focuses on talent, workplace and the marketplace, for AIG United States, Canada, Latin America and Caribbean. AIG has been named to the 2018 DiversityInc’s Top 50 List. 

October 2018: Latisha Hill

Director of Business Development for Avista Corp. & Senior Vice President for Avista Development, a subsidiary of Avista Corp.

Latisha Hills works to build economic vibrancy on behalf of Avista. She is responsible for directing the strategic development and operations of non-utility properties to maximize return and contribution to the broader regional economy. She has more than two decades of experience working alongside communities, driving economic development, and leveraging her specialties in regional systems planning and policy.

September 2018: Eric Svaren

Leadership Coach

Eric Svaren is a leadership coach, thought partner and teacher based in Seattle. Growing the capacity of leaders and organizations has been the focus of Eric’s career for more than 25 years. He has developed leaders, aligned teams, and facilitated turnarounds in national and local non-profits, health care, higher education, and government at all levels—producing organizations that are better aligned, more effective and resilient, and better able to “deliver their mission.”