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Civil Discourse in a Volatile Time

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If you are over the age of 18, please click here to apply for the adult track:
If you are age 18 or younger, please click here to apply for the youth track:

The purpose of this training is to elevate the level of civil discourse in the Boulder County area in order to counteract the degradation of civility that many are experiencing on a national level. Out Boulder County is committed to helping Boulder County be a more welcoming and inclusive community and see this training as an opportunity to engage and empower community members to that end.

This free day long workshop will provide participants with opportunities to examine their own understanding of and experience with civil discourse, the impact of their identities on their experience with discourse, skills to improve communication and engage in difficult conversations, and processes for seeking help and healing from volatility. The workshop offers a balance of participant driven sharing and explorations, information provision and skill instruction, and opportunities to reflect on and practice skills.

Full-day workshop: Saturday, September 21st, 9 am-4:30 pm
Train the Trainer: Sunday, September 22nd, 9 am-1 pm
Look below for agendas.

There is an application process you must complete in order to participate. Applying for this workshop does not guarantee that you will be accepted.

Please note that if you are accepted to participate in this workshop, you are expected to be present for the entire day. This is a free event with limited space, and we ask that everyone please respect this and be fully committed.

Applicants will also have the option to apply for the Train the Trainer program. The Train the Trainer session will prepare participants to lead future Civil Discourse training sessions for the local community, with the potential to craft trainings tailored to specific groups, such as different age groups.

Click here to see these workshops on Facebook.

This training will be conducted by members of Morten Group.

Thank you to our sponsors: Knight Foundation, Front Range Community College, Terrapin Care Station, Community Foundation Boulder County.

Saturday workshop agenda:
9-10 am: Welcome, Introductions, Grounding
10-10:30 am: It Begins with Me
10:30-10:40 am: Break
10:40 am-12 pm: Communication Skills
12-1 pm: Lunch
1-2:30 pm: Engaging in Difficult Conversations
2:30-2:40 pm: Break
2:40-4 pm: Help and Healing
4-4:30 pm: Closing

Sunday Train the Trainer agenda:
9-9:30 am: Welcome and Introductions
9:30-10:30 am: Training for Civility
10:30-10:40 am: Break
10:40 am-12:30 pm: Skills for Training in Civil Dialogue
12:30-1 pm: Closing

Meet the trainers from Morten Group

President, Mary Morten

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Mary Morten is President of Morten Group, LLC, a consulting firm with a particular focus on transformation through assessment, education, and action. Morten Group works with national organizations, foundations, non-profit and for-profit entities. Mary has over 20 years of executive leadership at non-profits and a past mayoral appointment in city government that provides clients with a unique skill set and access to decision makers.

Mary is a past Director of the Office of Violence Prevention for the Chicago Department of Public Health. In this position, Mary was responsible for the citywide implementation of the violence prevention plan: Prevent Violence! Chicago. Prior to this position, Mary was an appointee for Mayor Richard M. Daley and served as a Director in the Commission on Human Relations.

Previous positions include Associate Director, Interim Executive Director, and Board President of Chicago Foundation for Women, the region’s largest women’s fund; as well as Interim Vice President of Development at Howard Brown Health Center.

Mary holds a B.A. in Communications with an emphasis in Radio and Television from Loyola University Chicago and is a member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals and the Association of Consultants to Nonprofits.

Avi Bowie, LCSW, Training and Curriculum Officer

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Avi is a proud Chicago native with over 15 years of experience in social justice services. Avi’s professional expertise lies in non-profit management, program development and evaluation, youth trauma, racial justice and equity, and LGBTQ health and wellbeing.

At Morten Group, Avi generates customized training curricula for the Equity and Inclusion Institute, as well as assists in interview and focus group facilitation for organizational assessment processes. Avi received their Bachelor’s degree. from Hampshire College, where they studied Medical Anthropology and their M.S.W. from Columbia University’s School of Social Work in New York City.

Lisa Gilmore, LCPC, M.Ed., Consulting Associate

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Currently, Lisa’s work at Morten Group focuses on providing training to organizations seeking to integrate racial equity practices into their culture, specializing in facilitating opportunities for change and growth for white-identified individuals.

Lisa has also created a “train-the-trainer” curriculum for domestic and sexual services providers, improving participants’ skills and self-sufficiency at providing the necessary LGTBQ issues components of Illinois 40-hour advocacy certifications.

Cece Lobin, MSJ, Senior Consulting Associate

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Cece has been an activist and organizer for more than 25 years. The focus of her public policy and programming efforts are in the areas of domestic violence, reproductive rights, welfare reform, homelessness and housing, economic development and progress for women and girls.

As a Senior Consulting Associate with Morten Group, she lends her expertise in facilitation to racial justice trainings and diversity, equity, and inclusion workshops, as well as assisting in interview and focus group facilitation for organizational assessment processes. Cece holds a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Michigan and a Master’s in Journalism from Northwestern University.

Geneva Porter, MPH, Project Director

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Geneva joined Morten Group in 2019 as the Project Director. She has held many organizational learning and management positions, including leading programs that use asset-based approaches to address health and social conditions at community levels. She has extensive experience working with diversified entities including government, for-profit, non-profit, higher education, community- and faith-based organizations in both staffing and consulting roles.

Prior to joining Morten Group, she most recently served as the Interim Assistant Director, Health and Human Services, for the city of Evanston, IL. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and a Master’s in Public Health in Health from the University of Michigan.