Archives for August 2013

2013-2014 EMERGE Leadership Faculty: Stellar Lineup Features New & Old

Steve LokenPhotoAlliKingfisherChitwood - PhotoKellyLernerAnn EdminsterDEisenberg-cropped










This Fall and Winter, the EMERGE Leadership Workshop for Green Building Professionals and Advocates will feature returning faculty as well as some new surprises.

Kathleen O’Brien, Founder of the EMERGE Leadership Project, will continue to lead the workshop and will, as before, team up with long time green building professionals, authors, and advocates David Eisenberg, Director of DCAT, and Ann Edminster, of DesignAVEnues.  This year, however, she’s invited colleagues Alli Kingfisher, Kelly Lerner, Rick Chitwood, and Steve Loken to join her.

EMERGE Guest Faculty share some very important qualities. “In addition to a significant body of training experience,” says Founder O’Brien, “they are exemplars of Emergent Leaders themselves.” They also, she adds, “have depth of knowledge in skills they can pass on that are of particular use for Emergent Leaders. And every one of them have contributed seriously to the progress we have made in green building to date. We are extremely grateful we have such a stellar lineup.”

Alli Kingfisher and Kelly Lerner (Spokane, WA), for example, will be presenting on methods to encourage meaningful collaboration, as well as demonstrating graphic facilitation.   Steve Loken (Missoula, MT) will be presenting on his leadership journey, and in particular how he has used the tool of practical demonstration to create a new way of thinking in design and construction.  Rick Chitwood (Mt Shasta, CA), will be presenting on his journey from an introverted techie to a transformative market player through his business, his training, and more recently, his advocacy regarding California policy.

For more information: See www.emergeleadership net.  For more details on Faculty, please check out:

Here’s the Schedule with info on registration:

October 5-6. Naturebridge, Sausalito, CA.  Kathleen O’Brien, Rick Chitwood, Ann Edminster. Register at:

December  7-8. Islandwood, Bainbridge Island, WA. Kathleen O’Brien, Alli Kingfisher, Kelly Lerner, David Eisenberg.  Register:

January 24-25. Earth Advantage Classroom, Portland, OR. Kathleen O’Brien, Steve Loken, Ann Edminster


ILFI’s Trim Tab Features the EMERGE Leadership Model

This week, the most delicious treat arrived in my in-box. Trim Tab (Volume 18)’s Summer Edition features the first published explanation of the EMERGE Leadership Model, the foundation for the EMERGE Leadership Project (ELP). 13_TT18_summer_cover_smallWe urgently need more effective leaders, and more of them. For more details, you can read my article: EMERGE: Effective Leadership for Sustainable Solutions that Stick.”

Associated with the article is a case study in which EMERGE principles were applied. This is a planning project for a very special place, the Rainier Beach Urban Farm and Wetlands. The project, which was led by Berger Partnership and included O’Brien & Company’s participation was stimulus for articulating how EMERGE Leadership principles could be applied in a collaborative community planning project. You can read the Case Study.

Trim Tab offers other nourishment to green building leaders: a great conversation with one of the most humble (and for that I really appreciate him) movement leaders out there, Paul Hawken, a feature on child-centered design, and a wonderful report on and call to further local leadership by Mona LeMoine in the feature “Rooted in the Region.”

And finally, the issue features one of my favorite examples of transformative thinking and doing: the Bertschi School’s Science Wing, the fourth project in the world and the first in Washington State to achieve full certification under the Living Building Challenge, and the first ever to receive certification under Version 2.0 of the system. If you’ve attended the EMERGE Leadership Workshop you know a bit about this story, including the fact that the design team, the Restorative Collective, offered to do its work pro bono as a means to learn together, despite the fact that collective members sometimes compete with each other, trashing two assumptions that a) consultants are all about the money, and b) consultants can’t collaborate to break new ground. Transformation.

A great summer or anytime read.