Author Archives: jofacilitator

About jofacilitator

On Sept 1, 2020, I will celebrate 50 years of work with the Institute of Cultural Affairs, facilitating meetings, groups, communities, and organizations, making it possible for ordinary people to have a voice in decisions that affect their lives.

Debriefing a Traumatic Event

I’m reposting this in response to events in Ukraine and other current events. It was originally designed in response to the Columbine high school shootings, and used with a group of facilitators a few days after 9/11. It has been … Continue reading

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Three Stories from my Experience in Aboriginal Australia

These stories were originally published in Edges Magazine, Volume 4, #1, in 1991. The theme of the magazine issue was “The Fusion of Nature and Culture”. They are based on my experience with my family living and working with participatory … Continue reading

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Quick Update to “Contemporary Christmas Story 2021”

A healthy baby boy was born to the family on January 9, 2022. Donated baby clothes and equipment were delivered to the house before he arrived home from the hospital. Joy continues…..

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A Contemporary Christmas Story 2021

In these uncertain and dark times, I think we need a story of joy and hope.  Interestingly, it has resonance with the story of the Christmas season.  I tell this story with deep gratitude. It is shared without names, photos … Continue reading

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Facilitation, Education, and Transformation

Stories from my Experience Script of a presentation given on Zoom to a group of teachers and facilitators in China on June 29, 2021 Preparation I grew up on a farm in Iowa. I was a teacher from childhood – … Continue reading

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Fifty Years of Facilitation

September 1, 2020 marks 50 years since I first started working with ICA. At the end of this calendar year, I will be wrapping up my career, but not my vocation. I’m still working on what that looks like — … Continue reading

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Recognizing Unconsious Bias

I have a degree in Education and Anthropology, from the University of Iowa in 1970.  Not only did I study cultures for my Anthro major, but I was active in the university’s International Centre and was good friends with people … Continue reading

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Making Clustering Ideas Easier Using a Puzzle Image

The clustering stage of the Consensus Workshop Method is often really challenging, especially to those (most of us) who have been deeply trained to sort and categorize ideas: “Which of these is not like the other?” Somehow the capacity to … Continue reading

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A Summary of My Professional Pathway as a Facilitator

I am declaring 2020 as the last year of my career, but not of my vocation! This essay was written as a submission for IAF “Facilitator Emeritus” certification. It was limited to 1500 words, so there is a lot of … Continue reading

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Ordinary People Making a Positive Difference: Last Two Stories from the Party!

Everybody Welcome Story Immanuel Mennonite Church, Harrisonburg, Virginia, Rev. Matthew Bucher, August 2016 On the invite to the birthday party there is an image of a sign saying “Everybody Welcome”, from East Enders Against Racism.  The sign recalls the ones … Continue reading

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