Confluence offers skilled facilitation for meetings of all sizes, durations, and purposes, from hour-long strategy sessions to multi-day retreats. Delia’s special talent is “super-oxygenating” the room, fostering an atmosphere in which everyone can bring their most positive energy to the table. 

Delia’s work is grounded in a strong belief in the power of well-facilitated process to move people with diverse perspectives toward common ground, achieving creative outcomes that reach beyond what any might have accomplished alone. She has a particular passion for facilitating sessions that build engagement in community sustainability, connection to public lands, and place-based education. Her decades of experience with diverse groups, nationally and internationally, result in transformative, high-impact gatherings tailored to the unique goals and hoped-for outcomes of the hosts.

Key Approaches

You will find several key approaches in evidence at every gathering Delia facilitates: 

Goal Orientation – What would success look like for this gathering? After a thoughtful exploration of this question with your team, Delia works with you to develop an agenda tailored to achieve the results you are looking for. Throughout the planning, implementation, and follow-up stages, Delia supports your group in retaining a clear focus on direction, goals, and outcomes.

Emergent Design – Using a well-planned agenda as a starting point, Delia continually monitors the energy and ideas of the group. Checking in regularly with the meeting hosts, she proposes real-time tweaks—and even pivots—to the agenda to support the group in most effectively reaching its goals. 

Engagement – Once Delia agrees to work with a group, she sees her role of facilitator as being 100% in service to the goals of the group. She designs a range of processes that ensure that each group member is fully engaged, while simultaneously focusing on the progress of the group as a whole.

This attention to quality has led to multiple long-term relationships. Confluence has facilitated gatherings for local, borough, state, and federal governments; nonprofit organizations; schools; churches; and foundations. Please visit our Clients and Partners page.

Services

Thank you for leading us through three amazing days. You have really broadened my idea of what a facilitator is.
— Retreat participant

Confluence provides skilled facilitation for a range of purposes including:

  •     Board retreats
  •     Team building
  •     Partnership development
  •     Strategic planning
  •     Project planning
  •     Community participatory vision-to-action planning
  •     Nature-based soul work
  •     Trainings and workshops
  •     Focus groups

In addition, Confluence offers workshops and training in:

  •     Building Skills for Effective Facilitation
  •     Making Meetings Work
  •     Community Dialogue Facilitation Skills
  •     Civic Engagement
  •     Youth Engagement
  •     Community-based Participatory Planning in Protected Landscape Areas

Sample Projects

Delia has served as lead facilitator for the following gatherings. Additional gatherings with an educational and youth focus are outlined on the Place-based Education page of this site.

World Parks Congress
Facilitated multiple sessions at the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) World Parks Congress, including Inspiring a New Generation: Creating the Change We Want to See; Inspiring a New Generation: Where to From Here?; Climate Change Journeys; Inspiring Leadership in a Changing Climate; and Privately Protected Areas
     Sydney Australia – 2014

World Commission on Protected Areas
A joint meeting between the World Commission on Protected Areas and IUCN World Parks Congress, to plan and prepare for the World Parks Congress.
     Cuernavaca Mexico – 2014

Big Cypress National Preserve Off-Road Vehicle Advisory Committee
Half-day meetings of members of the ORV Advisory Committee (a FACA group) comprised of citizens of diverse perspectives, to make recommendations related to the implementation of an ORV Management Plan.
     Everglades City FL – Bimonthly, 2007-2015

Our workshop evaluations jumped a whole point on a five point scale and that point was Delia.
— Coordinator of National Training Workshops

Scaling-Up
A two-day gathering focused on strategies for building a national/international community of practice around large-landscape conservation, in support of the National Park Services’s (NPS) A Call to Action, hosted by the NPS Stewardship Institute (formerly Conservation Study Institute).
     Shepherdstown WV – 2013

Urban Matters
Two two-day gatherings of NPS and partner strategists, focusing on advancing urban parks and programs in support of A Call to Action, hosted by the NPS Stewardship Institute.
     New York NY, Cuyahoga OH, and San Francisco CA – 2012

Building Skills for Effective Facilitation
A week-long course tailored for the staff of the Lewis and Clark National Historic Trail.
     Omaha NE – 2011

Appalachian National Scenic Trail: A Trail to Every Classroom Planning Team
A full-day retreat of leaders of the Appalachian National Scenic Trail and Appalachian Trail Conservancy, to carry out strategic planning for A Trail to Every Classroom.
     Harpers Ferry WV – 2008

Balancing Nature and Commerce in Gateway Communities
A four-day course offered to teams of community members and public land managers from around the country by the US Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), NPS Conservation Study Institute, and the Conservation Fund. Delia served as lead facilitator and instructed modules on civic engagement, community visioning, and place-based education, as well as leading all team exercises.
National Courses:       Shepherdstown WV (National Conservation Training Center               
                                     [NCTC]) – 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010
                                     Savannah GA – 2004
                                     Seattle WA – 2002

Regional Courses:       Astoria OR – 2007
                                     Anchorage AK – 2005
                                     Asheville NC – 2005 (two courses)
                                     Yosemite CA – 2004
                                     Jackson WY – 2004
                                     River Falls WI – 2004
                                     Warren VT – 2002

Day-long workshops:  Washington’s Birthplace VA – 2005
                                     Shepherdstown WV (NCTC) – 2004

Principles and Promising Practices of Civic Engagement
A day-long workshop offered to NPS staff and partners by the NPS Northeast Region, modified for the parks in the NPS Southeast Region. Lead instructor and facilitator.
     Ochopee FL – 2006
     Staten Island NY – 2006
     Grafton MA – 2005

 Community Dialogue Facilitation Skills Workshop
A day-long workshop offered to NPS staff and partners by the NPS Northeast Region. 
     Fredericksburg VA – 2007
     Lowell MA – 2006

Cane River National Heritage Area Commissioners Visioning Session
Visioning component of a day-long commissioners meeting, and strategic planning session.
     Natchitoches LA – 2006 and 2007

George Wright Society Board Planning Retreat
A day-long board retreat to determine the need for a strategic planning process.
     Woodstock VT – 2007

Bureau of Land Management (BLM) National Landscape Conservation System (NLCS) Managers’ Meeting
A three-day national meeting focused on building consensus on vision and goals for the BLM’s NLCS.
     Santa Fe NM – 2007

Our workshop was an unqualified success… More than one participant described the effect of the workshop as “working magic”. Magic it may have appeared but we saw the tremendous skill, creativity, integrity, a little bit of mirth, and just plain hard work that [went] into every day. This work not only helped the park establish better connections with the local communities, but reflected well on the entire National Park Service.
— National Park Service Superintendent

New York Heritage Development Forum
Acted as lead facilitator and trained small group facilitators for this day-long gathering of state and private heritage development groups, to celebrate accomplishments and plan for future collaborative endeavors. 
     Troy NY – 2007

New York Heritage Area Association (NYHAA) Planning Retreat
A day-long planning retreat for the NYHAA Leadership Team.  
     Troy NY – 2007

NPS Flight 93 National Memorial – Dialogue on Interpretative, Education, and Civic Engagement Planning
A day-long meeting of Flight 93 family members, NPS staff, and partners to plan a civic engagement process.
     Washington DC – 2006

Community-based Participatory Planning in Protected Areas
A three-day workshop offered to leaders of national parks and other protected areas and to local community leaders, with Quebec-Labrador Foundation (QLF)/Atlantic Center for the Environment in partnership with the NPS Conservation Study Institute
     Miercurea Ciuc, Romania – 2007
     Stara Planina, Serbia – 2006
     Kalòfer, Bulgaria – 2005
     Cetinje, Montenegro – 2005

Federal Agencies and Nonprofit Partners – Building Blocks for Sustainable Funding Revenues
A partnership program with the USFWS, BLM, and NPS. Delia offered a session on mature relationships with nonprofit partners, highlighting Shelburne Farms.
     Denver CO – 2006

Big Cypress National Preserve Addition General Management Plan Focus Group
A day-long meeting of leaders of local and regional environmental and hunting groups, to discuss best ways to ensure diverse participation in the General Management Plan process.
     Ochopee FL – 2006

Fire Island Civic Engagement Roundtable
A day-long meeting of community members from towns within Fire Island National Seashore.
     Patchogue NY – 2006

Appalachian Trail – Reaching Out to Gateway Communities
A two-day meeting of Appalachian Trail and Appalachian Trail Conservancy staff and board members to plan community outreach.
     Woodstock VT – 2005

Civic Engagement in the Northeast Region: Strategy Planning Meeting
A day-long meeting of NPS Northeast Region staff to assess and plan for a civic engagement program.
     Philadelphia PA – 2005

I want to thank you for your facilitation expertise and, perhaps more importantly, for the calm soothing way you have of assessing situations in tense meetings and refocusing. I really value (and can learn from) that style.
— University Graduate Student

The Role of National Heritage Areas Within the National Park Service
Three meetings over the course of a year, each two to three days in length, of the Partnership Committee of the NPS Advisory Board.
     Cuyahoga OH, Providence RI, and Natchitoches LA – 2004-2005 

Refinement of Goals, Purpose and Desired Functions
A two-day meeting of NPS Northeast Regional Office associate regional directors. 
     Philadelphia PA – 2004

Collaboration and Conservation: Lessons Learned from NPS Partnership Areas in the Western U.S.
A three-day meeting of NPS staff and partners from the west, convened by the NPS Conservation Study Institute and QLF/Atlantic Center for the Environment.
     Santa Fe NM – 2003

NPS National Planning Leadership Group
A three-day meeting of NPS directors of planning from across the country.
     Washington DC – 2003

National Park Service Civic Engagement Workshop
A three-day symposium offered by the NPS Southeast Region to NPS staff and partners from around the country.
     Atlanta GA – 2002

Reconstructing Conservation: History, Values and Practic
A two-day section of a longer meeting of conservation practitioners from the private and public sectors, convened by the NPS Conservation Study Institute and the University of Vermont.
     Woodstock VT – 2001

New Directions in Parks and Protected Areas: Opportunities for US–European Cooperation and Exchange
A three-day meeting for US and Italian national park staff and partners, hosted by the NPS Northeast Region.
     King of Prussia PA – 2001

The National Park Service and Civic Dialogue
A three-day symposium offered by the NPS Northeast Region, to NPS staff and partners from around the country.
     New York NY – 2001