Editor’s Note: The following is a guest blog post by one of MarketingMel’s six advisors, Dave McAuley. Dave, who’s been both an entrepreneur and pastor, is the founder of the Summit Leadership Foundation, a 501 (c) 3 with a heart for connecting, caring and consulting.


“Only God Himself fully appreciates the influence of a Christian mother in the molding of character in her children.”  ~ Rev. Billy Graham


Building a legacy begins with keeping the next generation in mind.  Many leaders are shortsighted in setting goals.  Their expectations for having a lasting impact are very limited.  However, visionary leaders can see their influence extending well into the future.

Team MarketingMel: Mary Ellen Miller welcomes new ETSU intern Alex Quillin. Mentoring the next generation is a tenet of MarketingMel's PR firm.

Mary Ellen Miller welcomes new ETSU intern Alex Quillin. Mentoring the next generation is a tenet of MarketingMel’s PR firm.


Leaders who train themselves to think “next generation”, gain influence well beyond their lifetime.  They build a legacy with lasting impact. I saw this lived out in my Grandfather who was a true servant leader in his investment in the lives of others.  His legacy lives on today through the children, grandchildren and even great-grandchildren of those he influenced during his lifetime.


We can learn a lot from the history of the Jewish people who had the mindset of generational leadership instilled in them through the repeating of the Shema which is central to their faith:


“Hear, O Israel! The LORD is our God, the LORD is one! You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.  These words, which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart.  You shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up.  You shall bind them as a sign on your hand and they shall be as frontals on your forehead.  You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.”


Some generations fulfilled the commitment to effectively pass this on to the next generation and some did not, but there was always a “remnant” in each generation who would pass this on to their children.  They knew this truth was timeless and they were building a legacy by pouring themselves into the next generation.


Do you lead with the next generation in mind?  What would acting on that perspective look like in your organization and with your team? As a leader, you can extend your influence by pouring yourself into this generation in such a way that prepares them to influence the next generation through what they learned from you.  Generational influence is essential in building a lasting legacy.  What beliefs, values and principles would you like to see passed on as part of your legacy in the next generation?


Are you being intentional about building a lasting legacy through those you lead today?  Simply invest in the lives of others.  You don’t have to fill them, just take time to pour a little into them each day and building your legacy will begin to take shape.




Dave McAuley is the Founder, President and CEO of Summit Leadership Foundation as well as a Founding Member and an Independent Certified Coach, Speaker and Trainer of the John Maxwell Team. Summit Leadership Foundation is a 501(c)3 non-profit Christian ministry located in Johnson City, TN.  Summit serves as a relational hub for “Connecting, Consulting, Coaching and Caring” for leaders.   www.summitlife.org


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Nancy Dishner

  “Plans fail for lack of counsel but with many advisers they succeed.” Proverbs 15:22

Dave McAuley

Dave McAuley


Don Raines


Jenny Brock


Steve Marshall

Sarah Headshot

Sarah Rowan












What better way to launch the 2013 business year than with the counsel of six, smart business professionals? I’m honored to introduce the MarketingMel Advisory Board. Members of the board include: Don Raines, Senior Affiliate Partner, R; Dave McAuley, Founder and President, Summit Leadership Foundation; Dr. Stephen Marshall, Associate Professor and Mass Communication Program Head Department of Communication East Tennessee State University; Jenny Brock, Chairman of the Johnson City Power Board; Dr. Nancy Dishner Vice President of the Niswonger Foundation and Sarah Rowan, Director of Sales, Johnson City Convention & Visitors Bureau and former MarketingMel intern.

I’m fondly calling this “The Year of 10X Thinking.” My company is soon to turn four years old and I couldn’t think of a better way to celebrate than with the counsel of these wise people. I fondly call them “The Broccoli Board” because as advisor Dave McAuley suggested, “Ask them to tell you if you have broccoli in your teeth.”  Initially, I’ve met with everyone one one one but I plan to get this illustrious group together to share ideas soon. Now that will be a brainstorming session!

Rebecca Henderson of so helped me create the idea to create a board of advisers during our annual strategic planning sessions. Rebecca helped me move toward broader and bigger picture thinking.

Part of the 10X thinking includes speaking on Personal Branding, at the first-ever SoloPR Summit in Atlanta February 20th. The topic of personal branding is really resonating with people in today’s competitive work environment. They want to know how to present themselves both online, in social networks and in person. Another action step we’re taking this year is growing the tactical social media management side of the business because of the great demand for that.

Winning the 2012 Century Link Faith in the Future Award for Entrepreneurship for mentoring  the next generation of communications professionals was also part of the overall strategic plan for MarketingMel’s business.  I enjoy working with college students like my current intern Kristen Pierce (who was my guest blogger last week) and I believe in the importance of lending a helping hand to those who come along after us. I look forward to sharing these and many exciting new ideas with you and with the board over the next 10+ months.


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