Baise Vanderhorst, right, is congratulated by Monte Reyes after getting
pinned Wednesday during the Leadership Porterville graduation at Nuckols
Ranch. Nine people graduated this year from the Porterville Chamber of
Commerce program designed to shape future leaders for the community. Past
graduates are a virtual Who’s Who of the community, many holding
leadership roles from their churches to city council and in the public schools.
Earning their diplomas during a ceremony at Nuckols Ranch were Blaise Vanderhorst
with the Robert E. Vanderhorst law office; Adonas Nuckols with Nuckols
Ranch; Titus Moore with the Bank of the Sierra; Kyle Ladrigan with Porterville
Unified School District; James King with Porterville Developmental Center,
Rose Gurule with the City of Porterville’s Police Department; Jesus
Fernandez with Fernandez Insurance; Scott Braden with Porterville Unified
School District and Daniel Blazar with Sierra View Medical Center.
“This journey of leadership will help them in all their endeavors,”
commented Monte Reyes, a Leadership Class of 2010 alumni and now a member
of the Porterville City Council. He noted the goal of the program, which
stretches over eight months and includes insights into many different
aspects of the community, including schools, ag, city government and county
government, is to develop new leaders.
“The Class of 2016 had the commitment, enthusiasm and stamina to
go above and beyond,” he said. Vanderhorst, who just recently joined
his father’s law office, said the program was outstanding.
“It showed me the importance of teamwork, communication and to have
a better understand of what it is being a leader,” he said following
the ceremony. He said it also taught him the importance of working with
others and that leadership is “inspiring others.” Chamber
Board President Rob Taylor, an alumni of the first Leadership class in
1991, said the new graduates join more than 250 previous graduates.
“Knowing that I went through Leadership Porterville, for me, over
the years, it’s been a real benefit. There’s a kinship there,”
he told the graduates.
Dr. Sharon Kamberg, superintendent of the Burton Elementary School District
and a 1992 alumnus of Leadership Porterville, gave the class words of
encouragement and support.