Meet Our Staff
President & CEO
Susan Horne has served as president and CEO of Lead Virginia since March 2007. Prior to this statewide leadership role, Susan was part of an early group engaged in discussions for the compelling need of a statewide program connecting regional and statewide leaders with an understanding of the Commonwealth’s growing complexity and call for visionary leadership.
From her involvement in Lead Virginia’s original steering committee that shaped the concept of the program, and later the inaugural board of directors that officially launched the program in 2005, her strong belief in the vision for Lead Virginia led her to participate in its Class of 2006, where she was selected by her peers as graduation speaker.
Since its founding, Lead Virginia has been recognized by the Virginia General Assembly for building a statewide network of leaders serving the Commonwealth.
Susan has been recognized by the Virginia Chamber of Commerce for her work with Lead Virginia, by Virginia Business Magazine as one of Virginia’s 25 People You Need to Know, and by the Fairfax County Chamber of Commerce with its Blue Diamond Award for Excellence in Corporate Citizenship. Lead Virginia and Susan were honored by Virginia Commonwealth University’s Wilder School of Government with its Community Enhancement Award. She is an honorary member of Leadership Fairfax and has been recognized by Fairfax County’s Board of Supervisors for her many years with Leadership Fairfax.
In 2004 Susan was elected to the Town Council in her hometown of Leesburg, and in 2006 was elected vice mayor. Susan served for 15 years as founding program director, then executive director and CEO of Leadership Fairfax, as well as on the founding board for Leadership Loudoun.
Susan holds a master’s degree in public administration and bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of Texas at El Paso. She is a 1999 Fellow of the Thomas C. Sorensen Institute for Political Leadership from the University of Virginia.
Susan serves on the boards for the Richmond Forum, Richmond Behavioral Health Foundation (which she chairs) and Northern Neck Insurance Company. She is a member of the Impact of Women committee for the 2019 Jamestown Commemoration; the steering committee for the VCU Wilder School of Government Effectiveness in Government Awards; member of the Executives Roundtable in Greater Richmond; and Sorensen Institute Richmond board. She is active with her fellow state leadership program colleagues across the United States and has hosted their national conference in Virginia. Susan and her husband Bob live in Richmond and are active in their church with the newcomers ministry and in their neighborhood. They are blessed with two married daughters, two precious grandchildren and two lovable rescue dogs.
Director of Programs & Alumni Relations
Director of Programs and Alumni Relations Kat Roberts grew up in Yorktown, Virginia as a free-spirited artist in a family full of overly logical engineers. This experience led Kat to become the pragmatic idealist that she is today.
After spending years in other areas of the country, Kat is thrilled to be back in her home state. Prior to joining Lead Virginia, Kat worked for Teach for America as a Corps Member in Lower Alabama, teaching Fine Arts to elementary and middle school students in underserved communities. Most recently, Kat served as an Event Planner for Richmond-based companies, international and state organizations, and the Virginia Governor’s Office. Her experience also includes work with other non-profits, Virginia museums, NASA Langley Research Center, and archaeology abroad.
Kat holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Marketing Management from Virginia Tech, where she served as Chief Justice of the University’s Student Government Association. Kat is currently pursuing her M.B.A. at Liberty University, and has completed graduate-level coursework in Education from the University of Alabama.
At her core, Kat is passionate about education, and believes in the understanding of individuals, communities, and their influences. With a deep appreciation for non-profits that improve life for those in their region, Kat is excited to be a part of Lead Virginia.
Kat lives in Richmond and is blessed to have her many family members nearby. When she is not working, Kat is likely to be found simultaneously playing with her well-behaved mastiff and reasoning with her not-so-well-behaved beagle.
Director of Administration
Kerrie Clarke joined the Lead Virginia team in January 2015 as the Director of Administration. Prior to becoming a member of the Lead Virginia team, Kerrie was employed by Virginia Commonwealth University in the Research Rehabilitation and Training Center as an event coordinator. There, she coordinated monthly training classes in various states in support of people with disabilities entering the work force. She also was previously employed at the University of Richmond as an event and registration coordinator. There, she was the manager of the online registration system for events that included all athletic camps/clinics and various departments on campus.
Kerrie has had the opportunity to assist with the visit of the President of United States in 2011 to the University of Richmond campus. Kerrie holds a Bachelor of Liberal Arts degree from the School of Professional and Continuing Studies at the University of Richmond. She attained her degree as a full-time working adult and takes great pride in her achievement. Education is very important to Kerrie and she will continue her journey as she works towards her MBA at Strayer University beginning this spring.
Kerrie has been exposed to a diverse work background and will be a valuable addition to Lead Virginia.
Director of Development
Matt Ling began serving at Lead Virginia in July of 2016 as the Director of Development.
Prior coming on board at Lead Virginia Matt spent the better part of four years serving as a Development Director and Senior Development Director with the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation in Minneapolis, Minnesota. While there, Matt was responsible for building relationships with current and prospective donors as well as managing the development efforts for seven fundraising events in Minnesota, North Dakota and South Dakota on a yearly basis. Matt was a featured speaker on numerous national training webinars and the National Development Conference for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation primarily focusing on engaging young professionals and recruiting through social media.
Matt is passionate about building relationships in the “work” that he does (but he’d never call it work.) For him, learning and growing from each other is how we better our organization and community. He is excited that his job is to find those passionate people who want to make a difference together and believes that Lead Virginia is great example of what can happen when leaders serve for the betterment of all.
Outside of work, Matt is a dad to three – twin girls and a son and has been married for 7 years. Needless to say, it’s busy, but he loves taking them on weekend adventures getting to know the area. If he’s relaxing, you can catch him on the golf course or at a baseball game.
Matt received his bachelor’s degree in communications from the University of Northwestern – St. Paul.