LAD Work: Is It for You?

Linda Wieser, Nova Scotia, Canada

As former Leader Applicants, all of us have had experience working with the Leader Accreditation Department (LAD). And many of us have served as supporting Leaders. In that role we have observed attendees at meetings, had pre-application dialogues, gone over the topics on the Checklist of Topics to Discuss in Preparation for LLL Leadership (Checklist) and completed the Preview of Mothers’ Questions/Problems and Group Dynamics/Management (Preview) with the Applicant. We may have also worked with Applicants on the Breastfeeding Resources Guide (BRG).

Application work involves three members of a triad:  the Applicant, the supporting Leader, and a LAD representative. Have you ever wondered what it would be like to be that third member of the application triad, the LAD representative?

I find it very gratifying when a Leader is accredited. I wanted to join the LAD as my children moved away from breastfeeding and I wanted to explore the concepts in more depth.

Roberta Samec, CLA, Central and Southern Ontario, Canada

What is the role of the LAD representative?

Coordinator is probably the best word to describe what we do in the LAD. As members of an LLL International department, our role is to implement LLLI policies related to Leader accreditation and to accredit Leaders who complete the LLLI Criteria for Leader Accreditation.

We do this by:

  • coordinating application work
  • providing guidance about LLL philosophy and policies
  • mentoring Applicants and Leaders
  • presenting sessions at Area Workshops or Leader Days
  • writing articles for LLL newsletters or magazines.

I really enjoy the enthusiasm of Leader Applicants, and I have a special place in my heart for working with isolated Leader Applicants who bring LLL support into new communities when they are accredited.  

Melinda Ring, RALA, LLL Alliance/ACLA Kentucky-Tennessee, USA

Are you eager to explore new ways of working as a Leader?

Are you curious about LAD work?

Would you like to know more about an international department?

The LAD may be a good fit for you if you:
  • feel passionate about LLL philosophy and are energized by discussing it
  • enjoy being a mentor
  • like writing or talking about the ten concepts and the role of a Leader
  • want to make sure that La Leche League is there for future families
  • seek creative ways to solve problems
  • pay attention to detail
  • exhibit warmth and empathy
  • want to know more about LLLI policies.

The LAD is the best job I’ve had in LLL. My orientation was thorough, preparing me well for working with my first “real” Applicant. I really appreciate the support structure within the department. Someone is always there to answer my questions.  And most of all I love hearing Applicants’ stories and dialoguing with them about their experiences.

Linda Wieser, Administrator of Leader Accreditation, Canada

LAD Orientation and Support

The LAD has a structured, universal orientation that includes a discussion with the orienting LAD support Leader about a LAD orientation checklist of topics. It even includes the opportunity to work with a “practice Applicant” before corresponding with a real one. Just as Leaders are accredited the same way within LLL, LAD representatives receive the same orientation to LAD work.

The LAD also has a super support system. There is always someone available to answer challenging questions. At the Area level is the Coordinator of Leader Accreditation (CLA). At the Area Network/Affiliate Level there is the Administrator of Leader Accreditation (ALA) or in LLL USA, there is a Regional Administrator of Leader Accreditation (RALA) for each Region. At the international level there is the LLLI LAD Director (DLAD), and the LAD Council, which includes the DLAD and all ALAs.


In addition, the LAD publishes a quarterly newsletter called LADders. This publication provides LAD representatives with inspiration and information. It gives us the opportunity to share responses to sample questions from prototype Applicants or Leaders, publishes articles about relevant topics, and includes stories that reflect the international nature of the department.

One of the things I liked about joining the Leader Accreditation Department was that it was a way I could help that didn’t require me to be on the phone and I could do it on my own time. What I enjoy most are the moments when Applicants really get the connection between their story, the philosophy statements, and how that fits with the work they will be doing as a Leader.

Christine Thérèse Thompson, CLA, Florida and the Caribbean Islands, USA

LAD Work

LAD representatives correspond with Applicants and Leaders in a timely fashion.  Most LAD representatives are able to work with several Applicants at one time. Because Applicants usually write at different times, the LAD representative has enough time to work on a response.

LAD representatives:

  • respond to an Applicant or Leader within two weeks or less
  • communicate regularly via email, text messaging, phone, online video, or postal mail
  • maintain confidentiality with regard to their correspondence
  • motivate both Applicants and Leaders when application work stalls
  • keep up-to-date with LAD information and procedures.

There is a LAD resource with the same name as this article, LAD Work: Is It for You? To obtain a copy and to find out more, please contact the CLA for your Area.

Linda Wieser lives in Mahone Bay, Nova Scotia, Canada, where she and her husband, Jim, have a large garden and several boats for playing around on the water. They have two grown daughters and three grandchildren between the ages of one and three and a half  Linda has been a Leader since 1984. For many years she worked in the Professional Liaison Department as Area Professional Liaison for Michigan, USA, and then Atlantic Canada. In 2008, she became a member of the LAD and is currently the Administrator of Leader Accreditation for LLL Canada. She is also the Contributing Editor of “Preparing for Leadership” in Leader Today.