Sandra Fisk Letter

I am highly recommending Mary Ann Downey for any position she may propose to teach the consensus building process. I have known Mary Ann for three years in her capacity of presenter/ facilitator for all day workshops delivered to Leadership Greater Galesburg, a community leadership program. She is extremely creative, flexible, organized and prolific in this endeavor.

When teaching our very diverse group, she didn't just "put her time in" but engaged everyone in the experience of decision-making using consensus. Participants relay back to me that they are actually facilitating, teaching, and using Consensus Building in their workplace, in community and church organizations, and at home, when difficult decisions need to be made.

Ms. Downey is a master at conveying ideas and processes to others through her speaking, examples, exercises, and story telling. I have observed different language in our local media that tells me an impact is being made because leaders in our community really understand Consensus Building.

Here are some direct quotes from participants in Ms. Downey's workshop: In answer to the question, "Which of the 21st Century Leadership Capacities have you taught or used?"

"Building Consensus. I chair the National Stearman Fly-in committee in our community. We had some different thoughts within the group on the direction of this year's celebration. By teaching consensus building, we were able to each voice our opinions and arrive at a solution agreeable to all

"I'm working at incorporating the consensus process in our staff meetings at work. The most useful and exciting thing to see is how positions and ideas are not identified or given over to one person. After learning to trust the process, things progress in a refreshing, positive manner."

"Because of my workshop day with Mary Ann Downey and her teaching partner I learned how to listen more carefully and hear what others have to say."

Please call me if you need further information at (309) 343-2030.

Sandra S. Fisk
Learning Director
Leadership Greater Galesburg
2101 Windish Drive, Suite 212
Galesburg, IL 61401

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