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©2012 Leading Edge Mentoring

Who we are

Welcome to Leading Edge Mentoring

Susan RadwanLeading Edge Mentoring (LEM) is a consulting firm dedicated to managing and monitoring accountability in leadership, governance and management. Leading Edge Mentoring is operated by Susan S. Radwan, MEd, CAE, SMP, ARM. Radwan has been affiliated with the insurance industry since 1977 and the non-profit association industry since 1986.

Leading Edge Mentoring is a recognized consulting firm in leadership and governance process. LEM's primary clientele are Boards who wish to create accountability in their process or who desire to create rationality in their governance.  The services available to clientele generally consist of short term contact with some follow up assessment or regrouping after the primary presentation.

Radwan's work with non-profit organizations includes strategic planning facilitation, staff and board development retreats and workshops, and Board coaching in the practice of Policy Governance®. She also facilitates the CAE On-Line Exam Prep program for association executives around the world.

Leading Edge Mentoring has four areas of focus:

  1. Policy Governance® education, implementation and Board coaching.
  2. Strategic Management and Strategic Planning from a systems perspective.
  3. Facilitation of crucial conversations to the future of organizations, including visioning and conflict resolution.
  4. Facilitation of workshops in areas of leadership and boardsmanship.

©2012 Leading Edge Mentoring
Ph. 517-256-4786

What we do


Leading Edge Mentoring takes a stand for accountable, value-added organizational leadership:


The Leading Edge Mentoring mission is to make a difference in the impact of client organizations on civil society and within professions and industries. LEM provides tools and processes to enhance leadership and accountability at the Board, CEO and Senior Management levels. The end result is to shift the success measurements from activity results to real impacts that advance the cause of the organization.


Leading Edge Mentoring is a sought after resource, hired to shepherd an effective change process in individuals and organizations through motivating, mentoring, and monitoring people and their accountability to a process.


The values and principles upon which LEM services are provided are based on win/win relationships with clients where both parties are invested in the vision of success, meaningful change, and the cause of personal and organizational leadership. We will hold true to the values of win/win in terms of work to be done and payment to be received. Projects will only be undertaken if fair compensation can be received for the effort expended. Long term contracts will require partial payment up front. In return, LEM personnel and its sub-contractors will prepare for each project thoroughly, bringing fresh ideas to the process and innovative ways of facilitating the process.

©2012 Leading Edge Mentoring
Ph. 517-256-4786

How we work


Radwan believes there is great synergy in collaboration. As such, LEM is involved in five significant collaborative efforts:

Haines Centre for Strategic Management – Haines Midwest. Radwan is a principal in the Haines Centre for Strategic Management ( and lead consultant in the Haines Midwest Office.

The Haines Centre for Strategic Management is an international alliance of independent master consultants, trainers and facilitators, who specialize in the application of the systems thinking approach to strategic management (strategic planning, strategic human resources, leadership, and strategic change) and organizational innovation.

This Alliance was founded in 1990 in San Diego USA, and currently has alliance partners in the US, Canada, Australia, United Arab Emirates, Israel, India, Vietnam,Thailand, Hong Kong, Sri Lanka, Malaysia, Indonesia, China and Singapore.

Haines Centre Midwest’s contribution to the worldwide network is governance expertise.

Partners in Policy GovernancePartners in Policy Governance is a collaborative effort with Eric Craymer of Growth Management Consulting. Our Global End is: a supported community of Policy Governance® users. To that end, we offer seminars for the public, user groups for Policy Governance practitioners, board retreats and orientations focused on Policy Governance sustainability and model-compliant practices.

Website: Partners in Policy Governance (

Website: Growth Management Consulting

Managing Education Resource Group (MERGManaging Education Resource Group (MERG) is a partnership between Radwan and John Shaheen, the Executive VP of the American Institute of Paralegal Studies. MERG offers computer-mediated, faculty-facilitated education to a variety of marketing partners in the US, with particular emphasis in the property/casualty insurance agency industry and the association management profession. Related addresses: [email protected] and

In her capacity as President of the MERG Insurance Division, Radwan oversees marketing partnerships with organizations interested in offering on-line coursework to their membership. She is personally responsible for the development of the New Employee Series of courses for new insurance agency personnel. The portfolio of courses currently includes: New Employee Orientation, Delivering Quality Service to the Customer and the Employer, Personal Lines Coverage Basics, and Commercial Lines Coverage Basics.

The CAE Exam Preparation Program is a collaborative effort between the Michigan Society of Association Executives (MSAE) and Leading Edge Mentoring. This long-standing collaboration involves the on-line delivery of a 12 week curriculum for association executives pursuing the designation of Certified Association Executive.

In addition to the collaboration with MSAE on the CAE study program, Radwan and MSAE have collaborated on projects in the country of Jordan in fulfillment of USAID grants, as well as in the creation of The Association Connection, MSAE’s webcast on-demand series. The webcasts cover 20 topics geared to association executives and support staff, suppliers to associations, and board members.

The webcasts are available at or call (517) 332-6723 for more information.

Radwan partners with Association Management Resources (AMR) of Ann Arbor, Michigan, to provide governance services to AMR’s 11 clients, including MPTSA, MCSS, ATMAE, MPTA, and MANA.

Consulting Specialty: Policy Governance®

Policy Governance® is a systems-driven approach to governing organizations.   This technology for governing at the board level  offers a comprehensive and coherent whole system perspective.   Designed by John Carver, this hands-on operating system for Boards is applicable to the corporate, public sector, and not-for-profit communities.  The model empowers Boards to bring an effective values-added role to the organization.

Policy Governance® is more than a structure. It is an integrated model of principles, philosophy, structure and process. The governing style of a Policy Governance board is best described in the following broad policy, entitled Governing Style:

"The board will govern with an emphasis on (a) outward vision rather than an internal preoccupation, (b) encouragement of diversity in viewpoints, (c) strategic leadership more than administrative detail, (d) clear distinction of board and chief executive roles, (e) collective rather than individual decisions, (f) future rather than past or present, and (g) proactivity rather than reactivity.

On any issue, the Board must insure that all divergent views are considered in making decisions, yet must resolve into a single organizational position.

Features of the Model:

The philosophical bases for the model:

The Process of Policy Governance:

Partners in Policy Governance

Susan Radwan is a 1999 graduate of the Policy Governance® Academy. She partners with consultant Eric Craymer of Growth Management Consulting, Inc. of East Lansing, Michigan, doing business as Partners in Policy Governance® (PPG). This partnership was formed create a coordinated support system for Policy Governance practitioners.  Radwan holds a fondness for Board work and connection while Craymer has a particular affinity for the operational implementation of Policy Governance. When Radwan and Craymer combine their talents, a synergy occurs in the client’s implementation of Policy Governance.  All efforts are aligned and each entity has access to their own consultant. Visit the Partners in Policy Governance website at


Policy Governance® is the service mark of John and Miriam Carver. The authoritative website for Policy Governance® is

Recent LEM Workshop and Conference Topics

Policy Governance® Specific Topics:

General Governance Topics:

Other Topics:

©2012 Leading Edge Mentoring
Ph. 517-256-4786

Our Services

Strategic Planning Services for the Not-for-Profit Association

Boards that attend to vision are more certain
to address that which has enduring importance.

John Carver

If you don't know where you are going, any road will take you there, but if you want to maximize the impact of your association on its industry, you need a focused approach, a road map and accountability in the vision. Using a Systems Thinking Approach™, Sue Radwan will work with you to develop your plan using a five step Systems Model, described below.  The finished plan will include timelines, delegation and how to evaluate progress and success. A unique aspect of Leading Edge facilitation is that the Board focuses on Governance and Leadership concerns and considers how the committee structure can bring a value-added role to the initiatives. As a result, the Board reviews the governance role as well as the means of the association. Support services available include member survey construction. The final report, of course, is prepared by Leading Edge Mentoring.

More on the Systems Thinking Approach® to planning

The Systems Thinking Approach™ , developed by the Haines Centre for Strategic Management, has as its core a deceptively simple but profound five-step Systems Model that helps leaders collaborate with key stakeholders to identify the best direction for their organization and then lead consistently in that direction.  The five steps are: Phase A: Desired Future State – identifying shared outcomes that take both practical reality and best possible results into account; Phase B: Key Success Measures – desired outcomes are quantified as mutually agreed-upon measures, so all essential parties define “success” in the same ways and can agree on the evaluation of results; Phase C: Current State Assessment – while many ‘strategic planners’ start with this phase, it actually only makes sense in relation to your desired outcomes – What strengths, weaknesses, resources, challenges, etc. do we have to achieve our stated vision?; Phase D: Closing the Gap – developing Core Strategies and action plans, and taking effective action to implement them fully, ensuring staff buy-in and stay-in over time; and Phase E: Future Environment Scanning – an on-going system to help leaders keep tabs on important trends and developments, determine which ones require action, and take action before they become problems. Such actions are integrated into the systems view of the organization, rather than representing divergence from the clear direction. 

The ABCDE Systems Model is supported by clear processes and practices for each step, including a Parallel Involvement Process for key stakeholders throughout the performance-based management process.  For example, we provide methods to help leaders gather feedback and input from key stakeholder groups, derive priorities and meaning from the data, reinforce employee engagement and the value of their contributions, and still retain final decision-making power.

Elected Leader Education

Dreaming is not only permissible for leaders, it is obligatory.
Yet Board members lose their vision as they tend to operational issues.

John Carver

Ultimately, the board is responsible for its own development, its own job design, its own discipline, and its own performance. But nothing changes if nothing changes. Shifting the attention of the Board is a process which takes training and consistent focus of the organization's leadership. Leading Edge Mentoring can provide the third party voice which helps the Board to realize its proper role as the moral trustees of their industry, focused on broad strategic direction and connection to the community membership.

Elected Leader Education content might include:


Here are some testimonials from recent attendees of Sue's workshops and clients:

Policy Governance Consulting

If you answered "yes" to any or all of the questions above, Policy Governance® just may be the answer you are seeking. Attend an "Intro to Policy Governance®" session with key Board people to evaluate if there is something in the model for you to explore further. Contact Sue Radwan at (517) 256-4786 for current dates and locations. If your Board is already a Policy Governance® Board, consider Leading Edge services to help educate and maintain the board's focus on responsible and rational governance. Policy audit, Ends facilitation, Board assessment and Board coaching services are available.

Other Services Available

©2012 Leading Edge Mentoring
Ph. 517-256-4786


Current and Recent Projects

American Society of Association Executives (ASAE): Radwan’s role is to facilitate the CAE Kickoff  for candidates pursuing the designation of Certified Association Executive (CAE). (2010-2012)

California Association of Nurse Anesthetists (CANA): Radwan’s dual roles are Governance Consultant and Association Management Advisor.  (Aug 2010-Dec 2011)  This role was designed to guide the development of a sound infrastructure for essential functions of the association and coach the volunteer leadership in developing a proactive plan to meet member needs.

Council on Accreditation (COA):b> Radwan’s role is to facilitate strategic planning and complete a review of governance that will lead to a more efficient and effective Board. (2012)

Select Registry: Radwan’s role is to facilitate the Board and staff in full implementation of Policy Governance. As a byproduct of this role, Radwan is also facilitating a restructuring effort for this national association, including board downsizing and regional restructuring. (2011-2012)

Society of College and University Planning(SCUP): Radwan’s role was to review a proposed governing structure for the organization and provide a critique based in best practices in governance. An additional role is to assist in the transition and implementation of the plan. (2012)

Governance Transitioning

  • Association of Technology, Management and Applied Engineering (ATMAE) (2011-current)
  • Council on Accreditation for Nurse Anesthesia Educational Programs (2012)
  • New Jersey Association of Nurse Anesthetists (2012)
  • Select Registry (2011-2012)
  • Society of College and University Planning (SCUP) (2012)
  • Unitarian Universalist Association (2005-2011)

Curriculum Development and Instruction

  • Township Governance Academy (TGA), sponsored by the Michigan Townships Association, a multi-course certificate program geared to elected township officials with content in boardsmanship and fundamental concepts in local governance.
  • New Employee Series, owned by Managing Education Resource Group (MERG), sponsored by 18 insurance agent associations around the United States, addressing property/casualty concepts and customer service.
  • The Association Connection, an on demand webcast series for association personnel, vendors to associations and volunteer leadership.
  • CAE Exam Prep Online, sponsored by the Michigan Society of Association Executives, with students from all segments of the association management field, a 12 week study course involving sample exams, online discussions, and structured study to prepare for the CAE Certification Exam.
  • CAE CRAM Session, sponsored by the Michigan Society of Association Executives, a 2 ½ day intense and comprehensive review in preparation for the CAE Certification Exam, offered twice per year.
  • How to Be An Extraordinary Chairman, a joint project between Association Management Resources (AMR) and the Michigan Society of Association Executives.

Planning Projects

  • ASET The Neurodiagnostic Society (2012)
  • Arkansas Association of Nurse Anesthetists (2012)
  • Association of College Honor Societies (ACHS) (2012)
  • Council on Accreditation (2012)
  • Providence Family Medicine Residency Program (2012)
  • New Jersey Association of Nurse Anesthetists (2012)
  • AMR, an association management company, strategic plan (2011)
  • Council of Residency Directors of Emergency Medicine (CORD):  strategic plan (2011)
  • International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC): strategic plan (2011)

Online Education - Developed by Sue Radwan

Self-Managed Mentoring - a self-study, web-based course, located at

Reflective Human Action - computer-mediated, self-study or faculty-facilitated, web-based course, located at

New Employee Series for Property - Casualty Insurance Agencies, including:

    • New Employee Orientation for Insurance Agency Personnel
    • Delivering Quality Service to the Customer and the Employer
    • Personal Lines Coverage Basics
    • Commercial Lines Coverage Basics

      All courses in the series are computer-mediated, faculty-facilitated courses, and available at

    Courses are delivered via the Managing Education Resource Group (MERG), in conjunction with marketing partners located around the country. Marketing partners include affiliates of the Professional Insurance Agents and the Independent Insurance Agents of America.

CAE Exam Preparation - owned by the Michigan Society of Association Executives

A 12 week program, reviewing the recommended readings, the nine domains of knowledge as determined by the CAE Commission, case scenarios, quizzes, sample exams, a library of supplementary reading, and an exam bank created by participating students.

The Leader in You & Marketing Your School – owned by the Michigan Institute for Educational Management. These courses are the on-line offerings of a professional development certification called SAPC-the School Administrators Professional Certification.

Board Governance: An Overview; Selecting a Board Model and Governance System; Recruitment, Election and Orientation of New Directors – owned by Credit Union Executives Society (CUES). Co-authored with Eric Craymer, these three courses are part of the Director Education Center housed on the CUES website (

The Association Connection, a webcast on-demand series sponsored by the Michigan Society of Association Executives. Series includes 20 titles, 20 hosted and 19 presented by Radwan (


©2012 Leading Edge Mentoring
Ph. 517-256-4786

About Susan S. Radwan, MEd, CAE, SMP, ARM

Susan S. Radwan, MEd, CAE, SMP, ARM

Susan S. Radwan owns Leading Edge Mentoring, a consulting firm which specializes in governance and leadership issues. Radwan's work focuses on the structure and process which impacts effective growth of individuals and organizations.

Since 1985, Radwan has served the association industry as a teacher, facilitator, and executive staff person. She obtained a Master's degree in Education (1977) from the College of St. Scholastica in Duluth, Minnesota, a Bachelor of Arts in Communication Arts (1974) from Aquinas College in Grand Rapids, Michigan, and professional certifications in association management and insurance.

Clientele - A Partial List

US Policy Governance® Consulting
International Activity
Strategic Planning, Business Planning, and Vision Facilitation Services, including:
Governance Consulting and Elected Leader Workshops
Other Services
Distance Education Development

©2012 Leading Edge Mentoring
Ph. 517-256-4786


Work Experience

2010-Current - CEO, International Policy Governance Association
2011-Current -Principal, Haines Centre for Strategic Management, San Diego, US Midwest Practice Leader dba Haines Midwest
2003-Current - Partner, Partners in Policy Governance (®, a collaboration to support Policy Governance practitioners.
1996-Current - Owner, Leading Edge Mentoring, building capacity in governance, leadership and management
1996-Current - Partner, Managing Education Resource Group, President of the Insurance Division
1997-1998 - SIAA-Midwest Regional President, Satellite Insurance Agency Alliance, developing an alternative distribution system for insurance in the region.
1987-1996 - Professional Insurance Agents of Michigan/Michigan Association of Insurance Agents (a consolidated organization), representing independent property & casualty insurance agents. Position: Education Director/#2 Executive from 1987-1991, Sr. Vice President for Professional Development from 1991-1996 for merged organization.
1986-1987 - Michigan Association of Insurance Companies, Communications Director
1985-1986 - The Bishop Company, Technical Writing Support & Marketing Specialist
1984-1985 - Maternity Leave
1980-1984 - Stratton-Cheeseman Management Company, Medical Malpractice and General Insurance Field Sales
1974-1980 - Teacher, Jr. High, St. Thomas Aquinas, East Lansing, Michigan (1977-1980), Holy Rosary Academy, Bay City, Michigan (1974-1977). Focus: English Literature, Grammar & Composition

Academic & Professional Education

1974 - Bachelor of Arts, Aquinas College, Grand Rapids, Michigan Major: Communication Arts, Minor: English and Education
1977 - Masters in Education in Individualized Instruction, College of St. Scholastica, Duluth, Minnesota
1981 - Certified Insurance Counselor, Society of Certified Insurance Counselors
1991 - Associate in Risk Management, Insurance Institute of America
1991 - Certified Association Executive, American Society of Association Executives (mastery of knowledge in 13 areas of association management)
1994, 1997, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2009 - Re-certified CAE
1999 - Participant, Policy Governance® Academy, Carver Governance Design
2006 - Certification for Spiral Dynamics, Levels I & II
2007 - Advanced Workshop in Policy Governance®, Carver Governance Design
2010 - Strategic Management Gold Mastery Certification, Haines Centre for Strategic Management
2011 - Strategic Management Professional designation, awarded by the Association of Strategic Planning, demonstrating mastery level knowledge and core competencies in the Strategic Planning industry at the highest level. 

Current Membership

  • Church of St. Michael, Grand Ledge, Michigan, Choir accompanist
  • International Policy Governance Association, CEO (2010-Current)
  • Michigan Society of Association Executives (MSAE), member
  • American Society of Association Executives (ASAE), member


  • MSAE Diamond Award, Supplier/Partner Personal Award, in recognition of exemplary service and support to the not-for-profit professional and to MSAE, September, 2003.
  • MSAE Chairman's Gavel Award, presented by Jim Barrett, CEO of Michigan Chamber of Commerce, for dedicated service to the profession proven by advancing the ideals and aspirations of the Chairman of the Board, July, 2001.
  • 2001 Woman of the Year, ABWA Seven Islands Charter Chapter, January 2001

Special Interests

  • Vocal and keyboard music
  • Reading books that paint a theoretical framework for application in organizations.

Published Work (2004-current)

  • ©2011, Effective Governance, article and assessment tool, co-authored with Karl Sommers, published by Haines Centre for Strategic Management. 
  • ©2011,  Taking a Whole System Approach to Adopting Policy Governance, Board Leadership, ©Wiley Periodicals, Inc., Number 108, Mar-Apr 2010
  • ©2011   The Bellman Handbook, Leading Edge Mentoring (US Publication)
  • 2010 (slated) The Concierge Handbook for Jordan Hoteliers (funded by USAID, published in Jordan)
  • © 2008 Business Association Guides (funded by USAID, published in Jordan)
    • Financial Management Handbook
    • Fundraising Handbook
  • © 2008, Overcoming a Challenge in Using a New Technology, co-authored with Eric Craymer, Board Leadership, ©Wiley Periodicals, Inc.,  Number 98, July-Aug, 2008
  • Jan 2008 Associations Now Ensuring Accountability in the Board-CEO Relationship
  • © 2007 Succession Planning from CEO to Board Chair , Chapter 6, Policy Governance®: A Powerful Response to Challenges that Transform Board Work and Succession Planning, co-authored with Eric Craymer, published by Credit Union Executive Services (CUES).
  • © 2007 Creative Marketing and Communication The Business Association Guide, published by AMIR 2.0, a development project of USAID;
  • Jan 2007 Associations Now Getting the Relationship Right (reprinted in 2008)
  • Jan 2006 Associations Now Do’s and Don’ts of Board Staff Relationships
  • Sept/Oct 2005, The Corporate Board Board Orientation and Board Culture
  • Feb 2005 Executive Update The Exasperated CEO’s Guide to Troubleshooting Bad Board Behavior
  • © 2004 – 2007: CAE Exam Preparation Self-Study Guide

Books that Made a Difference in the World According to Radwan

  • Authentic Leadership: Courage in Action, by Robert Terry, c. 1993, published by Jossey-Bass, a Wiley Company, San Francisco
  • Boards That Make A Difference, by John Carver, c. 1991, published by Jossey-Bass, a Wiley Company, San Francisco
  • Dialogue: The Art of Thinking Together, by William Isaacs, c. 1999, published by Doubleday, a division of Random House, New York, NY.
  • Here Comes Everybody: The Power of Organizing Without Organizations, Clay Shirkey, © 2009, published by The Penguin Group
  • Reframing Organizations: Artistry, Choice & Leadership, by Lee G. Bolman and Terrence E. Deal, c. 1991, published by Jossey-Bass, Inc., San Francisco, CA
  • Spiral Dynamics: mastering values, leadership and change, by Don Beck & Christopher C. Cowan, 1996, Blackwell Publishers, Malden, Massachusetts
  • Systems Thinking and Learning , Stephen Haines, ©1998, published by Centre for Strategic Management
  • The Fourth Turning: What the Cycles of History Tell Us About America’s Next Rendezvous with Destiny, by William Strauss and Neil Howe, c. 1977, published by Broadway Books, a division of Bantam Doubleday Dell Publishing Group, Inc.

©2012 Leading Edge Mentoring
Ph. 517-256-4786