Working for workplace religious diversity, equity & inclusion


Steven A. Hitz

About Launching Leaders: Launching Leaders is a registered nonprofit organization that helps Millennials find fulfillment through applying proven principles and spirituality to their everyday lives. Launching Leaders, with its interfaith advisory council and millennial advisory council, has developed an interfaith version of its basic course to help people from different faiths learn and take action together to overcome differences.

Youth Leadership Medalist, Global Business & Interfaith Peace Awards

Steve Hitz, former CEO of U.S. Reports, promotes interfaith action and peace through Launching Leaders Worldwide Inc., a nonprofit organization that provides a personal development and leadership experience for a new generation. Piloted in New Zealand and scaling up globally, it moves beyond dialogue to interfaith action, helping participants of different faiths create plans for their lives, and reach out through interfaith service projects.

Acceptance Speech

“We live in a time when the rising generations are NOW the largest percentage of the human population. Launching Leaders Worldwide is focused on celebrating these generations and inviting them to connect principle-based learning with their individual faith. We desire to come along side the new generations, not push from behind. In the Launching Leaders book and course, we teach personal development and leadership principles which unite participants. It is exciting to watch young adults come together to improve themselves and give back to their communities, no matter their faith tradition. The rising generations have an innate understanding of how to cooperate to accomplish this. They can teach everyone about the heart of peace, acceptance, and love. Let’s learn from them.”


Steven A. Hitz is a founding member of Launching Leaders Worldwide Inc., a nonprofit organization focused on faith-based and interfaith action, learning, cooperation, and understanding. He is also the founder and former CEO of U.S. Reports (now Afirm), which provides services for the commercial insurance industry in the United States and Canada. He sold the company and retired in 2016. There were 1,200 employees when Steve retired. Since retirement he authored Launching Leaders: An Empowering Journey for a New Generation, a book that helps young adults examine their lives, determine where they are now, where they want to be, and how to get there while embracing their faith. He is also the lead creator of the Launching Leaders course. He has employed more than 10,000 in the Millennial generation (ages 18 to 34), the primary audience for the book and Launching Leaders course. Steve is an entrepreneur at heart. Being involved in various businesses from banking to farming/cattle and franchise operations, has allowed him to see the principles contained in Launching Leaders: An Empowering Journey for a New Generation change the lives of thousands of people around the world. He’s married to Ginger L. Hitz, and they are blessed with three sons, two daughters, and ten grandchildren and counting.

More Detail

Steve Hitz is promoting interfaith action and peace through Launching Leaders Worldwide Inc., a nonprofit organization, which provides the Launching Leaders course, a personal development and leadership experience. Universal leadership principles are taught, which unite participants in a faith-based pursuit of personal fulfillment and mutual growth. Course topics include developing your core values, planning your life, living congruent, finding mentors, and financial fitness. Students develop plans for their lives and are encouraged to engage in interfaith action projects that give back to their communities.

Launching Leaders, as a set curriculum and in-person class, was co-founded by Steve Hitz, and was first tested in 2008 in New Zealand. It has since celebrated hundreds of graduates there. It has also been taught in multiple countries in live classrooms on four continents to more than 2,000 participants. Course objectives: 1. To develop an understanding of personal leadership principles in a context of interfaith cooperation and understanding. 2. To provide a working knowledge of leadership practices that stimulates personal development and leadership of others. 3. To provide a system for identifying personal values and goals that builds a framework for creating a plan for life, including financial self-reliance. 4. To develop individual interfaith action plans intended to give back to the communities where students reside.

Nominated by:

  • Michael Leonard
  • Executive Director
  • Launching Leaders Worldwide Inc.