The Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences

RLF Recap: “Telling Your Story"

Class of 2020 Rockefeller Leadership Fellows take a group photo during their retreat at Lake Morey Resort. 

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At the annual Rockefeller Leadership Fellows Fall Retreat, Luke Katler ’15 spoke to 25 Rocky Fellows about “Telling Your Story: Connecting to Others Through Personal Narrative and Vulnerability.” Katler has done theater all his life, and currently works as an assistant producer for Scott Rudin, known as one of Broadway’s most prolific producers, while concurrently producing his own projects.

He worked as a theatre producing associate for the multi-Tony-winning producer Barbara Whitman and Broadway agent Susan Weaving. With Deby Xiadani ’15 and Alec Ring ’15, Katler co-produces and co-hosts a parody cooking show called Good Cooks. At Dartmouth, he studied American History and Theatre and worked a 10-month stint as a teaching assistant for the Italian Department’s foreign study programs.  

Through theatric performance techniques and improv, Katler urged Fellows to utilize public speaking techniques and weave strategic vulnerability into their individual narratives such that it allows them to find common ground with their audience. Fellows also explored how to wield their story to benefit their personal brand. 

Public speaking has always been a challenge for me, but Katler’s session gave me a critical skill that has facilitated sharing ideas with an audience. In a talk I gave a few weeks later, I used Katler’s ‘me, us, & we” technique to prove my main point! Katler convinced me in presentations that how you deliver your content is just as important as the content itself. Even the simplest message can have a large impact if its captivating. Ultimately, as a future leader hoping to enter politics, being able to capture the minds of my audience is an important skill that is necessary in garnering support. 

-Written by Andrew Sosanya, Class of 2020 Rockefeller Leadership Fellow

As Rockefeller Leadership Fellows, seniors gain a better understanding of the qualities and responsibilities expected of leaders. As Fellows take part in the workshops, dinner discussions, and team-building exercises, they examine their skills, qualities, and attributes as leaders and analyze how these influence teamwork and achieving goals. 

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The Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences