Back to top

Lawrence Van De Valk

Larry Van De Valk

Senior Extension Associate

275B Warren Hall
(607) 255-6891

Larry is Executive Director of the Empire State Food and Agricultural Leadership Institute, or LEAD New York, a leadership development program for adult professionals in the food, agricultural and natural resource industries. Van De Valk is also a Senior Extension Associate in the Community and Regional Development Institute (CaRDI), part of the Department of Development Sociology at the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Cornell University. Larry earned a PhD in Adult and Extension Education, MA in Teaching and BS in Agricultural & Biological Engineering, all from Cornell, as well as an AAS in Forestry from Paul Smiths College. He has published several articles in refereed journals, and his research interests are in the areas of leadership development theory, program evaluation, and the social capital building effect of leadership development initiatives. Larry is the recipient of the State University of New York Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Professional Service and the International Association of Programs for Agricultural Leaders Outstanding Leadership Program Director Award.

Research Focus

My doctoral research focused on the development of an explicit theory of leadership development. In addition, I am proficient in the use of a structured conceptualization method known as concept mapping, and have an interest in its use as a program planning and evaluation tool. I also have an interest in the social capital building effect of leadership development initiatives, including network development and community capacity building.

Outreach and Extension Focus

In addition to administering the LEAD New York Program, I also conduct leadership-related workshops on a consultancy basis for a variety of stakeholder groups, both internal and external to Cornell University. Most of these workshops are related to teambuilding, personality assessment (i.e. MBTI) and leadership style, communication skills, organizational change and strategic planning, meeting management and/or effective board membership. I also serve on the annual forum program planning committee for the NYS Agricultural Society, and consult with other industry organizations on their educational, professional development and organizational change efforts. I also serve on the facilitation team for LEAD21, a national leadership development program for faculty and extension staff from land grant universities, tribal colleges, and USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA).

Teaching Focus

I teach an undergraduate leadership fundamentals course, which is a required Tier II course for the CALS leadership minor

Awards and Honors

  • Excellence in Community Development Programming - Team National Award Winner (2017) National Association of Community Development Extension Professionals
  • Excellence in Community Development Programming - Team Northeast First Place Award (2017) National Association of Community Development Extension Professionals

Presentations and Activities

  • Team Building Workshop. Children Science Center Kenya Team Building Training. December 2018. Children Science Center. Nairobi, Kenya.
  • Elements of Engagement:Building Civic and Community Engagement Through a Statewide Leadership Development Program. ILA Annual Meeting. October 2018. International Leadership Association. West Palm Beach, FL.
  • Leadership Competency Card Sort: Modelling Active Leadership Learning. IAPAL Annual Meeting. September 2017. Nuffield Australia. Darwin, Australia.
  • My Leadership Style. Generation Next2 Leadership Conference. March 2017. Farm Credit East. Albany, NY.
  • From Concept Map to Logic Model: Implications for Program Evaluation and the Practice of Leadership Development. ALE Annual Meeting. July 2012. Association of Leadership Educators. Key West, FL.