• 1940


    W. Donald Fletcher and Van Duyn Dodge met while working on a political campaign in San Francisco.
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  • 1942


    The first Internship in Public Affairs began in January 1947 with twelve participants, eleven of whom were veterans.
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  • 1958


    After a decade of success in San Francisco, Coro expanded its impact by opening a center in Los Angeles
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  • 1980


    The most enduring and successful of these was the Women's Program. Launched in 1975, the program recruited mid-career women and provided a three-mo
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  • 1975


    CORO continued to develop our offerings including part-time programs such as City Focus and the Asian Pacific Program.
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  • 1990

    Key developments

    The launch of the Leadership Luncheon and the Exploring Leadership high school program. Both are still a vital part of the CORO landscape in San Franc
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  • 2002

    Part-Time Programs

    CORO launched a part-time program for individuals of all ages, cultures, and races. The Community Leadership Program ran through 2006 and Oakland City
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  • 2006

    Contract Programs

    The UCSF Faculty CORO Leadership Contract Program was launched in 2006 and has run continuously since that time. It is the first of many leadership pa
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CORO empowers individuals to effect change in organizations and communities.

CORO is a nonpartisan nonprofit organization focused on redefining leadership. With substantive programs for youth, recent college graduates, and professionals, we cultivate emergent leaders at all stages of their lives and careers. CORO builds leaders who know when to step up and when to step back – taking ownership, sharing responsibility, and collaborating with others to ignite change in their communities and workplaces.

In an increasingly complex world, CORO program participants are passionate catalysts for change. We take an innovative hands-on approach towards developing leadership skills through experiential learning, group interaction, and collaborative communication. CORO programs are comprehensive and transformative, giving participants life-long skills as well as an extensive network of alumni, supporters, and partners. CORO graduates are successful leaders in all sectors including business, government, nonprofits, politics, and education.

CORO programs serve diverse communities and empower participants to apply their skills, character, and commitment to leading today and shaping tomorrow. Communities benefit directly from our on the ground presence and participation, as well as into the future with each new leader who graduates from a CORO program.

Find out more about our programs here.


All CORO program participants learn by doing. Guided by one of our experienced program leads, participants actively engage with their colleagues to disrupt old patterns and make way for new ways of thinking, new skills, and new behaviors.

CORO learners discuss, present, role-play, and experiment with new ways of interacting. They analyze issues, collaborate, and give and receive feedback...

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CORO Northern California’s unique, hands-on training method transforms the way people engage communities to address the most challenging issues. It does not deliver a specific solution but create the conditions for solutions to emerge. It provides the environment to connect and develop the skills and opportunities to address the increasingly complex issues we face as a society. CORO enhances the effectiveness of individuals, and they impact the communities they serve - the impact you can only achieve if you are working across sector, department, discipline, and ideology.
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“I find the CORO skills-building so effective that one can see the positive changes happening in a group right before your very eyes. This is an incredibly interesting, important, and empowering experience.” -Faculty Member, UCSF



CORO’s many programs are made possible by the generous contributions of individuals, foundations, and corporations. Thank you to all of our donors – your contributions empower us to cultivate the next generation of emergent leaders.

Charles Munger, Jr.
The San Francisco Foundation
Dodge & Cox
Betty & Jack Schafer
Gilbert & Elzina Elder Education Foundation Fund
Pacific Gas and Electric Company
Koret Foundation
Leadership ($10,000)
Senator Dianne Feinstein & Mr. Richard Blum
Dunstan & Jamie Allison-Hope
Lennar Urban
Marin Country Mart LLC
Mary Obelnicki & Craig Silverstein
Benefactors ($5,000)
Aaron Read & Associates
Clint Reilly/ Merchants Exchange Productions
Dignity Health
First Republic Bank
William G. Gilmore Foundation
David & Susan Coulter
Mary Obelnicki & Craig Silverstein
Megan & Michael Janis
Bank of the West
Smart Wire Grid
Megan Janis
Tom Lockard & Alix Marduel
Linda Gregory
Bechtel Corporation
Lawrence J. Simi
Starbucks Coffee Company
Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
Clint & Janet Reilly
Dalberg Global Development Advisors
Juniper Networks, Inc.
Stewart & Vinita Ramsay
The Coca-Cola Company
Thomas More Storke Fund
William G. Gilmore Foundation


CORO programs serve diverse communities and empower participants to apply their skills, character, and commitment to leading today and shaping tomorrow. CORO programs directly impact lives and foster collaborative change. 

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