Minutes October 21-25 CNVC GCC/Board Conference

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Day1 - Sunday, October 22

Members: Marshall & Valentina Rosenberg, John Wiley (President), Jori Manske (interim ED), Stefan Wisbauer (Vice-president and Secretary), Katherine Singer (Treasurer), Danielle Beenders (office rep), Jeff Brown (ENACC rep), Liz Gay (SEAO rep) on speakerphone.

Observers: Sartaj Alag & Barbara Rinaldi (consultants to Marshall & Valentina), John Buck (sociocracy consultant), Mark Feinknopf, Jim Manske, Cynthia Moe, Mitch Henrion, Lili Lambert, Fay Landey, Mary Moore, Tim & Laura Watson, Sunder Wells and Anne Wiley.

Decision: Membership Change

Effective immediately we are withdrawing consent for Liz to be a member of the GCC. GCC wants to express appreciation for her contributions and offer support. We invite the South East Asia and Oceana circle and other certified trainers active in the region to select a new representative. We would like to be involved in suggesting candidates. We also welcome observers for the rest of this GCC meeting. The GCC would like to offer empathy to Liz and the circle for this transition, and Katherine has offered to serve in this role. This proposal was made to meet the needs of effectiveness and efficiency.

Note 1: Per sociocratic process, Liz was not included in the voting. Later in the conference Jori & Jim Manske were also assigned to join Katherine in working with Liz and the circle, and more clarity was developed on related CNVC structural changes.

Note 2: Please note the structural changes decided on day 4 which includes Leadership Team (LT) support for the continuation of Liz Gay's role as representative on the GCC which is now separate from the Board of Directors and LT.

Note 3: Much of the first day was devoted to a proposal by Marshall and Valentina to create their own organization that would collaborate with CNVC, as a strategy to better serve everyone's needs. A consensus began to emerge in NVC dialog during the first day, that these needs might better be met by re-structuring CNVC and explicitly acknowledging and defining Marshall and Valentina's leadership.

Closing round of the morning session:

Notetaker forgot to take note of the comments of the GCC members.

Anne Wiley: I see the learning possibilities for Liz. I am relieved to have my evenings with John back, and that CNVC can move forward.

Fay: My heart is heavy. I have a need for understanding. There must be other facts, I do not have them. I am not clear what the problem is. What are the facts around this proposal?

Mark: I feel sad and frustrated. The board is not getting to their issues. This hurts. It looks like you guys wanted to get someone off the table. I was asked in the Mexico board meeting if I wanted to be the rep for the Georgia circle. I said then that I could not represent the south. If I had said yes this could have been me that this happened to.

Cynthia: I am scared. The North America election that happened and got Jeff on this council did not meet my needs for inclusion. I am not sure what is going on about this. It doesn't feel good.

Sartaj: Liz thank you for being so close to the fire like this. I am optimistic by nature. Please stay in mission. Stay with the reality. This process takes a while to establish, 3-5 years. I am hopeful this will happen.

Lili: I am sad, I can imagine how this is for her since I want to contribute too. I am concerned for the organization. I am hopeful and committed.

Mary: I feel sadness and appreciation. My needs for authenticity and "power with" were served.

Barbara: I am humbled by the individual and organization needs. Stay connected with the present, with the need.

Mitch: I have mixed feelings. I have not stayed connected with my needs over the last year as much as I would have liked. Hopeful we can go somewhere. I am sad and discouraged; it is hard for humans to work together.

Sunder: I thought I knew how big your tasks are. It is bigger. You are constructing the mountain as you are climbing it. That is an enormous task.

Check out for the day:

Danielle: I just talked to my husband and he reminded me of this quote we heard: All people ever say is "Please" and "Thank you."

John Wiley: I am scared about what our direction is. Mostly hopeful we can move to a new structure. Curious what that would look like. Appreciation of all the contributions, and everyone's comments and silence to hold the space. Happy we are here all holding the space and working so hard to meet everyone's needs. Thank you for bearing with me as facilitator.

Jori: I feel pain behind my eyes, and there is sweetness about it. There is sadness around so many needs that have not been met. There is a sense of hope that the needs are now being held, and that now they are on the table, needs like wellbeing, creativity, and connection. I feel hope that they will be addressed more than they have before. There is peace in that. I am looking forward to more connection with Valentina; maybe tonight?

Katherine: pain before the birth and hopeful for a meaningful shift.

Valentina: exhausted emotionally. My body is drained. The divine is holding me up. If I do not trust it, I will fall. I am relieved that so much is on the table. I enjoyed all the street giraffe on the table. I am happy with the shift and my connection with Marshall in silence and connection of our vision. I want connection with Jori too; I may not have time tonight. I feel sad for Liz. I am glad we are all in one piece and we are mourning and celebration together.

Marshall: am very, very hopeful and very stimulated about how to transform CNVC. I am enjoying what is happening.

Jeff: this was a breakdown leading to an opening. This came to an opening through the creativity. The radical topic made it all move and I love the sea of possibilities. I am excited to get back at it tomorrow.

Stefan: Herman Gyr's (consulted during leadership review process) opinion was it is time to shake up the system. I am grateful that this is happening. The magic we wanted to make happen was happening here today. I am happy to be here and be part of it.

John Buck: Everybody be a leader, take pen and paper to bed so you can record anything the spirit brings to you.

Jim: I am tired, hopeful and grateful. I was touched by the proposal you wrote, Marshall and Valentina. I care for the office staff and I have gotten attached to them. It feels good they are important to you too.

Anne: I am taking vacation days to do this and I love it. I appreciate the respect and the depth and enjoy the jolt that happened. I loved the movement to creativity and openness. The group that is here wants to serve with you, Marshall. I think we are all here to serve in someway.

Mark: feel a lot of pleasure I can be heard. I feel hurt. It was not in my integrity, and I wonder if there was a different way to do this then to get rid of a person. Lots of people are looking at this organization. It is all about you Marshall and you should be in the leader position. Allow yourself to be it. They will be happy to have you keep creating it. I hope you can find a way to make it happen.

Cynthia: Very troubled about what happened this morning. Jeff should not be here because he was chosen that way too. I am relieved that Marshall & Valentina will get support to create what has to be created. I have seen the pain in both, which is not in spirit with what NVC is about. It has to be fun and a joy to do it.

Sartaj: I am very optimistic. Please keep seeing the reality as it is. Keep an eye on what it is you are doing. Take massive action to make this happen.

Lili: I noticed distress in Marshall & Valentina and I was concerned about it. I now know what it was and I can understand it and I am hopeful. You started the beauty in all the people here. It all cannot move on without you. I'm glad to watch the realness of you (Marshall). I hope that this will take over the world.

Mary: I am tired. It started rainy and I am grateful the sun is out now. I hear pain. I learned about OFNR and I have seen how it works if it is used. It meets my need for trust of this process I am just learning, that it will hold the value I gave it. I am grateful for all of you. It meets my need for transformation. I saw the struggle. My need for authenticity was met. You do not know what it all is. What I saw today meets my needs for transformation.

Barbara: you created something Marshall and you have to deal with it. I thank you all for being open and using the process.

Mitch: Tim shared his concern on what would happen to the public image (if CNVC split) that the organization that is teaching us how to get along and resolve conflicts is not able to stay together itself. I feel excited that we are looking at all the options and that none is excluded yet. I am excited about the option to make a new organization global and the CNVC would be connected to the global network. I have hope for more clarity and structure. So many of us want to contribute and we may all be pulling in the same direction. I am excited about the 10 seniors idea, to support the organization.

Day 2 - Monday, October 23

Members: Marshall & Valentina Rosenberg, John Wiley (President), Jori Manske (interim ED), Stefan Wisbauer (Vice-president and Secretary), Katherine Singer (Treasurer), Danielle Beenders (office rep), Jeff Brown (ENACC rep).

Observers: Sartaj Alag & Barbara Rinaldi (consultants to Marshall &Valentina), John Buck (sociocracy consultant), Mark Feinknopf, Jim Manske, Cynthia Moe, Mitch Henrion, Lili Lambert, Mary Moore, and Anne Wiley.

Note: After Marshall shared an outline of a potential organizational structure and some discussion of it, the group decided to shift the focus to strategic priorities in order to look at the organizational questions with a view to delivering those priorities.

The strategic priorities that became the focus were:

  • 'Peace-related synergies' (building linkages and potentially collaborations with leading practitioners)
  • 'Media' (proactive generation of high-impact media opportunities to share NVC, e.g. TV shows etc.)
  • Fundraising (building on the existing platform to broaden strategy and introducing further key people to collaborate with Lynn)
  • Local Training organizations (working with existing circle structures to enhance geographic coverage and the level of connection / efficiency)
  • Online platform creation for serving the network (detailed priorities prepared by ITC committee and evolution already posted on NVCwiki.com)
  • In-house trainers (bringing salaried trainers into the centre to ensure sustainability and free up Marshall from being the main source of revenue)

Further important areas which may initially receive less attention until sufficient resources are gathered:

  • 'Themed projects'
  • Service provision (mediation, NGO training, consulting... etc.)
  • (Business) service partnerships

More meaningful descriptions and explicit goals etc. will be shared via a presentation document with which we captured the state of discussion on these priorities.

Check out for the day:

Jeff: I am sad I could not engage in the conversation. Not sure how to go about it yet.

Jori: I appreciated the progress and clarity that came through. There is some heaviness in my heart from outside events.

John Wiley: Was hard for me to stay with what we did during Stefan's facilitating today. Saw a lot of creativity and productivity. Because of the "popcorn" dialog style I have not connected with myself and others as I'd like, so I'm feeling some disengagement. I'd have preferred at least occasional “rounds” to ensure we heard from everyone and not just from those willing to jump in. Not sure if this is reflecting what is going on for all.

Danielle: I am hopeful. There is a lot to get done.

Stefan: I am happy to get through what we got through. I tried to keep all of you engaged. I would like to hear how to get people more engaged. I am not sure if it was my facilitation or the topic. I am glad we got to talk about strategy.

Katherine: I feel relieved that others were also disconnected. I wonder if less words to explain things maybe useful. I want to make sure Marshall & Valentina are not picking up more work when we transition to the new ideas.

Marshall: This is just what I needed. I wanted help with this. It would have been harder to do this by ourselves. The next step is to get all this work poured on to all of you.

Valentina: I was so excited when we got started. Marshall was drawing, my focus changed after the emergency phone call (news about Molly's death). I am sad I did not ask to get informed about what happened in my absences. The popcorn style was really exciting. The heart storming was good to get all the support. It was very important to us. Now it is tangible. It is very meaningful.

John Buck: I am excited about what Marshall got to happen. A lesson to all is that since you did not let Stefan know you got disconnected, he could not correct it.

Jim: I am still sad from the news. I did not see how I get to contribute yet so I am not so engaged. I feel worried when I hear Marshall say; "I will do that". I felt relief when you said now I want all of you to do this.

Anne: I feel mixed. I am happy Marshall and Valentina got what they wanted. And we now have a list of goals. I do feel there was creativity.

Cynthia: I feel a lot of hope. I feel restless. I do not like long meetings.

Mitch: I was not here. My heart feels like lead. I feel pain (about Molly).

Mary: I did have a low energy moment. I hope I did not snore too loudly. Can people leave money to CNVC in their will? Make it a memorial to Molly?

Barbara: It may well be that strategy may not be your cup of tea. If the vision does not fire you up then what does, and say that. Do not get attached to your strategy. Have fun, play with it. I worked with Marshall & Valentina on their plan and I am glad that it was received so openly by you all.

Sartaj: I celebrate that the afternoon was very productive. We worked on Marshall's vision. Re-tune the car and get your hands dirty. It looks like a lot of work. I am a little worried how you will do all that. I mourn that so many did not get their needs met. Not sure how you can get your administration and need for connection met. You have to find out how to get administration in your structure. Do both.

Mark: I am excited to see Marshall take the leadership. The news (about Molly) was hard for me. I could not hold it because I was personally in a similar experience.

Day 3 - Tuesday, October 24

Members: Marshall & Valentina Rosenberg, John Wiley (President), Jori Manske (interim ED), Stefan Wisbauer (Vice-president and Secretary), Katherine Singer (Treasurer), Danielle Beenders (office rep), Jeff Brown (ENACC rep).

Observers: John Buck (sociocracy consultant), Jim Manske, Mitch Henrion, Lili Lambert, Mary Moore and Anne Wiley.

Decision: CNVC Structure Changes

The structure of CNVC will be changed as follows:

  • A central team (named "Leadership Team" (LT) on Day 4, see below) led by Marshall and Valentina will be in charge of the day-to-day running of the organization. The team will also include an ED role (may be renamed), at least one network coordinator role and various other roles relating to major activity areas (e.g. fundraising, media initiative, etc). The team will connect at least on a weekly basis and for specific purposes with lower frequencies (see presentation file for further detail)
  • The Board of Directors or "legal board" will be separate from the GCC
  • The GCC will continue to exist but revert to be being separate from the Board. It will connect with CNVC through at least one dedicated network coordinator.

Decision: GCC co-Coordinators

Jori and Jim Manske are selected as GCC co-coordinators for 1 year.

Decision: E.D. Selection

Sartaj, Barbara and Stefan to co-lead the process of defining requirements and leading search for Executive Director with transition by Jan 31st, 2007.

Decision: Interim E.D.

Jori will continue to function as interim ED until a new candidate is appointed.

Day 4 - Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Members: Marshall & Valentina Rosenberg, John Wiley (President), Jori Manske (interim ED), Stefan Wisbauer (Vice-president and secretary), Katherine Singer (Treasurer), Danielle Beenders (office rep), Jeff Brown (ENACC rep).

Observers: John Buck (sociocracy consultant), Jim Manske, Mitch Henrion, Lili Lambert, Mary Moore, and Anne Wiley.

Decision: Board Membership

The Board of Directors will consist of Marshall Rosenberg and Valentina Rosenberg acting as co-Chairs, John Wiley, President; Stefan Wisbauer, Vice-President/Secretary; Katherine Singer, Treasurer; Jori Manske, Interim ED; each with a term of 6 months (April '07) as further changes in membership and way of operating are considered

Decision: Board Role

The duties of the Board will revert to those in effect before merging with the GCC, and the GCC's role will be co-defined with the Leadership Team. The Board wishes to express appreciation for the contributions already made by the NVC community in building the GCC, to provide further support and guidance in the ongoing development of the GCC, and continue providing & receiving feedback via NVC dialog.

Decision: Leadership Team

To change the name of the Central Coordination Team (CCT) to be Leadership Team (LT) (aka Loving Team)

Check out for lunch:

John Buck: a lot of nonviolent people like Nelson Mandella and Gandhi were in prison. This prison was good for Marshall. I am hopeful this is going somewhere.

John Wiley: My heart is full of appreciation and hope.

Marshall: I amazed and thrilled because I realize I had some unrealistic expectations of what to get done. And we did so much more.

Jim: alchemy of compassion. We start with this mistrust and enemy images and jackal. And then we got connected through empathy and connection.

Jori: I notice a lot of intensity and excitement in me because I am celebrating what is happening here. And I want to keep living it and see what happens. This is a process. Let us not get stuck in the static vision of this. We are creating an organism not an organization.

Valentina: my jackal is saying; "be careful it looks too got to be true." My giraffe says, "miracles do happen." My daughter is a miracle that happened today. The intention is being present. The jackal can be ok with that. I have gratitude for what we have accomplished.

Katherine: I was sure what I wanted to do with my life. I was bored and wanted to leave the board. Now I want to be part of this; this is part of me. I feel this certainty.

Stefan: for me, what we have been doing is what happens if we live our dreams. I am glad what Valentina called the "divine energy" brought me here through a series of surprising events. Creating clear strategic priorities and a structure to serve them has been my dream so that dream has come true. I hope we can make my other dream about macro conflict transformations come true as well.

Danielle: nothing is a coincidence. We are on this mountain to build a mountain. This sacred space and how the universe is providing.

Jeff: I feel wholeness. I am grateful for my ability to contribute in this way. Being on this board and moving away from it.

Anne: It is strange switching between being an observer and not, and being able to speak and not. It is remarkable to hear you (Marshall & Valentina) shift from saying you thought you needed to split with this group, to now having this strong committed body and to move forward together.

Lili: I really appreciate you all decided to do a change.

Mitch: I feel content with where it started and where it ended up. I celebrate my contribution. (All are celebrating her contributions.)

Mary: curious, calm and grateful. Why did I pick up a book and be connected to Jeff, and have this interest in sociocracy, the IIT, the board meeting? My need for transformation is so important to me. I am a minister and we will be meeting as a council here in a month and I will be holding this.

Decision: Minutes

Minutes will be sent to the GCC yahoo group so all can give feedback for 24 hours before it goes on the nvcwiki.

Decision: GCC Membership

The membership of the GCC will continue to be comprised of members nominated by regional circles and accepted by the GCC. Current suggested membership: Jori & Jim Manske (co-coordinators), Liz Gay, Monica Reu, Jeff Brown, Kirsten Kristensen, Anne Bourrit, to be decided by consent of those who have previously been nominated for GCC membership.

Check out:

Jeff: This has been a great learning for me. The empathy and self empathy piece. This is a big part of what I take away. I am so happy to have these skills.

Marshall: I am really pleased with this meeting, how we dealt with the communication between us. And Katherine I am glad we agree that it is a good idea to split this group.

Valentina: I am so glad all of you were able to be here with your giraffe ears on when we started this meeting 4 days ago. I was not attached to the proposal we brought. I did not want to hurt anyone. I am so proud we were all able to work with it, and celebrate how we have been guided to emphatically connect and spread it. Marshall, I remember how hard it was to not be clear on what to do. I feel that you may now have faith in the process. I feel relieved and confident. Grateful to know the difference between empathizing and when we use rumors so we can have an understanding and serve our mission. Feel full and feel energized.

Mitch. I am in Celebration. Feel peaceful and relieved.

Mary: I feel peace and confident. Needs for trust, autonomy and confidence are met. It works. The process can bring this. I am grateful for all of you that came together to do this work.

Katherine: I am relieved to now have a leader. The board president was changing all the time. For me having Marshall there will mean continuity. I feel very confortable. I feel myself getting more motivated to contribute to the organization.

Jim: I am savoring this. I would not change anything. Even the things that were painful. I trust our process. I trust that if we stayed with it we would have arrived here too, but sociocracy made it easier and created structure to make it easier. There is a spiritual marriage between us all now. My mourning is about the fear about what is next. How can we feed this energy when life starts happening again?

Jori: when I look back over the process that lead us here, I get in touch with my thought that I was coming to say goodbye. Now I walk out of here like I went to Disneyland (with the new role of co-leading the GCC with Jim). I am so thankful to continue the connection. I was scared I was losing it. I value all our connections. I am celebrating the process I went through and the gifts I got to support that. I am ready to play in Disneyland.

Anne: I enjoyed this whole experience/ this meeting. This is very different from other meetings I go to! I have wanted to incorporate NVC in the other meetings. Here it is so fluent. I'm appreciating the healing and growth for the organization and the people within it. It was amazing to me. I am thankful to Danielle for writing this up. I appreciate John Wiley for tracking and holding the space, making sure people were heard and also his expressions from his heart. I appreciate how he kept a flow happening so we accomplished so much.

John Wiley: I often have found myself balancing between hopes and fears. I had hopes of a healing between Jori and Valentina, because I sense a deep connection there. Hope was so strong in me that the shadows of fear receded in the light of those hopes. I believe that love, once found, is never lost. My hope now is for continued clearing, adding to the joy I'm celebrating. I heard that Marshall & Valentina were in pain and hoped we could do something. I'm glad we're re-defining the organization in a way that works for everyone. I am glad the love was there so it could help us to heal ourselves and CNVC. In the dance between hope and fear it seems to be more about moving to a different place. A different consciousness. Something like trust or embrace of what is, was and will be. My fear was that maybe we could not get everyone's needs met and we would part. Now I'm not wanting to get attached to the hopes or fears, just stay in embrace, and that coupled with NVC helps the hopes to come true.

Danielle: I was amazed by the direct openness and honesty from the start. Could dive in get things on the table to work out. Also have fear about getting back in old stream and not doing this. Want to trust we won't get back in the old stream.

Group Photo

10/06 Conference
This photo was taken at the end of the October, 2006 CNVC Board Conference.

It's brightened slightly and cropped close to provide the best combination of file size and resolution, so the beautiful background doesn't show. In fact, we're in front of a fabulous panorama of trees in fall colors at The Mountain retreat center near Highlands, NC. Click on the small image or the word "photo" above to see the full-size version.

The full-size image includes a list of names. If anyone's name is incorrect, please let us know.

File with addendum meeting notes

This is a 25 page graphical file with extensive additional information about the discussion from this Conference. It includes details about the restructuring, and provides a visual summary of the heartstorming we did. To see this file, click on the link below and follow the directions to download the graphical "PDF" file to your computer:
File:Minutes Addendum v3.pdf