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In the rapids? Ever wish you could ask another ED those nagging questions that keep you up at night? Looking for a professional group of peers who are interested in developing their leadership practices?  Does a confidential group that addresses the difficult leadership questions appeal to you?

“Being part of a Paddling group has enhanced just about every phase of my job – immeasurably!  I highly recommend it to anyone who directs anything.”  

~ Jackie Davidson, Executive Director, MDI YWCA

Deb Burwell and Carol Carriuolo, partners in Paddling the Rapids, are willing to initiate peer consultation groups for nonprofit executive directors in your area. Meeting with colleagues in a facilitated confidential setting has many benefits: increasing vitality, breaking isolation, exchanging resources, building leadership muscle, defining values, identifying best practices, avoiding common traps, celebrating wins, and more.  Here is how one executive director describes the benefits:

“Paddling the Rapids is a welcome monthly bit of respite from the cares and worries of being “in charge.”  Every month I gained new insights and ideas from my Executive Director peers that I could apply to my own leadership and management or within my organization.  Priceless.”

~ Doug Orville, Executive Director, Child and Family Opportunities

Typically, Paddling the Rapids groups meet monthly for 4-hours over the course of eight sessions. Dates and times will be negotiated at the first session.  The cost is $850 – a $150 deposit will reserve a place for you.  Each group is limited to eight participants.

The design of the forum includes a combination of case studies, peer consultations, dialogue, and resource exchange.  Every participant will have the opportunity to address burning issues of the moment as well as attend to the deeper more systemic issues that emerge.

Let us know if you would like to speak to leaders who have participated previously. We would be happy to make a connection for you.  Groups have been offered throughout Maine since 2002.

Contact us to see if this is a match for your professional development needs. More information about our peer forums can be found here.

Deb Burwell, 338-2162,

Carol Carriuolo, 781-9816,


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