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Leadership Development, Personal Growth, NSLS Blog

A Look Back At the Year’s Most Inspiring Moments

Every year, the NSLS provides many opportunities in which we all get to learn from others who share their leadership journeys. If there’s one collective takeaway, it's that we never know what life will throw at us but what matters is that we find a way to keep going and strive to do our best.

Before we say farewell to 2022, we want to share five of our favorite leadership lessons from the year. We welcomed renowned guest speakers and applauded the many extraordinary accomplishments of NSLS members. Let’s reflect on these top leadership lessons:

1. Let Nothing Stand In Your Way

Former US Ski Team member and World Cup alpine ski racer Lindsey Vonn is one of the most celebrated athletes of all time. She won four World Cup titles, finishing second only to Annemarie Moser-Pröll. Vonn scored victories in 2008, 2009, 2010, and 2012. At the 2010 Winter Olympics, she became the first American woman to win a gold medal in the downhill competition. 


Through many triumphs and setbacks, Lindsey attributes her success to learning from her frustrations and turning them into something positive. As one of this year's Speaker Broadcast guests, she offered advice on handling adversity, "Turn frustration into motivation or something positive because there are always lessons to be had from all of those situations."

2. Mindset Is Everything

Good Morning America anchor Robin Roberts wrote The New York Times best-seller, Everybody's Got Something. Her direction at GMA has helped the broadcast win three Emmy Awards for Outstanding Morning Program, and it’s remained the top morning show in America for nine years.


Drawing a direct line between her success and the power of positive thinking, Robin shared her winning advice as one of this year's most anticipated guest speakers. An optimistic mindset includes the following:

  • Knowing the importance of kindness and gratitude

  • Not feeding into fear

  • Always be your authentic self

As the award-winning author and broadcaster explained, "You need to change how you think to change how you feel."

3. Thriving Through Self-Acceptance

People with disabilities want to live whole and successful lives; however, the perception of disability is a problem that must be solved. There should be more opportunities and visibility for disabled individuals, which will rely upon society engaging in an informative dialogue about representation and inclusion.


Desteny Espinoza is Vice President of the San Antonio College NSLS chapter. She's taking the lead on changing perceptions and showing the world that being born with a disability does not mean one can not thrive, set big goals and achieve them in life. At this year's Leadership Summit, Desteny shared her inspiring story of ambition and accomplishments despite being born paralyzed.

4. The Power Of Celebrating Our Differences

MSNBC reporter and author Daniela Pierre-Bravo had no idea how enthusiastic readers would become about her new book, The Other: How to Own Your Power at Work as a Woman of Color. As the undocumented daughter of immigrants, she shares personal obstacles faced in academia and the workplace. 


As a guest on Motivational Mondays, Daniela explained how society would greatly benefit from full diversity and inclusion. People do better when they see themselves represented. Daniela said the most piercing part of being an "other" was reconciling her worth as someone undocumented. She was told she didn't belong, making her want to hide and not participate.

5. Lifelong Learning Drives Success

Successful leadership is a lifelong journey. It relies upon our commitment never to stop upskilling every chance we get. This also pertains to personal development. Our success directly correlates to constantly gaining knowledge and the humility to understand you don't have to know everything.


Steve Wolenhaus is a celebrated entrepreneur and motivational speaker who teaches that to be a success, we must live with clear intention and genuine curiosity. As a Motivational Mondays guest, Steve explained how many people go through life in blind obedience. To become successful, he advises us to be curious and never be afraid to fail.