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Delaney Stephens

The Center for Rural Development has named University of Kentucky graduate Delaney Stephens of Somerset as youth programs coordinator and community liaison.

Stephens, who has a background in public service and leadership, will coordinate The Center’s three summer youth leadership programs and serve a dual role as community liaison networking with government and community leaders across the region.

“We are excited to welcome Delaney to The Center and our management team,” Lonnie Lawson, president and CEO of The Center, said. “He will be a tremendous asset to our youth leadership programs and represent The Center well in Southern and Eastern Kentucky within our 42-county primary service area.”

The announcement comes at a time when The Center is preparing to kick off the 2012 summer sessions of its three youth leadership programs. Stephens will be responsible for coordinating activities for more than 200 middle and high school students involved in this summer’s Rogers Scholars, Rogers Explorers, and Entrepreneurial Leadership Institute (ELI) leadership programs.

“These programs have been extremely important to the development of youth in Southern and Eastern Kentucky. I am looking forward to continuing the model The Center sets for youth development in our region.”
Delaney Stephens
Youth programs coordinator and community liaison

The Center, a nonprofit organization based in Somerset, Ky., provides leadership and scholarship opportunities for young people in Southern and Eastern Kentucky to seize their potential as the region’s next generation of leaders and entrepreneurs.

In addition to his role as youth programs coordinator, Stephens will be traveling across the region meeting and talking with elected officials and community leaders about the diverse programs The Center has to offer in its four focus areas: leadership, public safety, technology, and arts and culture.

“One of the community liaison’s responsibilities is to help communities realize their community and economic development needs,” Stephens said. “By working together, we will be able to create a better quality of life for residents in our region.”

Stephens graduated from UK in 2010 with a bachelor’s degree in community communications and leadership development. After graduation, Stephens worked in the tourism industry in the Lake Cumberland area before he accepted the position at The Center.

For more information on The Center’s summer youth leadership programs, call 606-677-6000 or email