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Saturday's Reflective Panel    

We will end our second day together on Saturday (October 4th) with our signature “Reflective Panel” featuring four prominent leaders in our field: Carolyn Lukensmeyer, Bill Isaacs, David Campt and Najeeba Syeed-Miller. The Reflective Panel is the closest we come to a “keynote speech” at NCDD conferences, enabling conference participants to hear from D&D figureheads without enduring long speeches without any dialogic quality to them.

Each panelist will address major challenges facing the D&D community as part of an Inquiry Circle.  Unlike traditional “talking head” panel presentations, conversation in this space flows among the panelists without long monologues.  The Inquiry Circle builds collective intelligence while honoring and modeling the spirit and power of dialogue.

After a couple of rounds of the inquiry circle, you will have the opportunity to discuss what you heard and what question your table would like to submit to one of the panelists. In the final segment of this session, the panelists will respond to some of these questions, touch on emergent themes and insights, and share closing thoughts.

Steve Pyser will be moderating the Reflective Panel. Learn about our panelists…

David W. Campt, PhD

Dr. David Campt currently provides consultation about race relations and diversity issues with U.S. congressional representatives, the foundation community, and national community organizations. David is also a Senior Associate with AmericaSpeaks, serving leading roles in a number of AmericaSpeaks projects. To name a few, he was the co-facilitator and co-designer of Citizen Summits III and IV for the Mayor of Washington, D.C., and played a similar role in the multi-site Unified New Orleans Plan Community Congresses II and III. David is the co-author of the recently published book, The Little Book of Dialogue for Difficult Subjects.

Campt worked as a senior policy associate with President Clinton’s Initiative on Race at the White House from September 1997 until the end of 1998. Campt led an effort by the Initiative to bring together the best diversity trainers to produce a general-purpose guide for racial dialogue that was promoted by the President. In addition, Campt used his extensive background in program evaluation to design criteria from which diversity efforts would be evaluated for potential recognition by the White House.

Before joining the Initiative, Campt completed his doctoral dissertation in City Planning at the University of California at Berkeley. His work focused on cultural competency, which concerns the challenges to institutions that attempt to become more reflective of the populations they serve. He has provided technical assistance to numerous state, county, and non-profit agencies interested in increasing their cultural competence. His co-authored article, “Cultural Competency in Human Service Systems” was the lead article in a monograph on cultural competency published by the Department of Health and Human Services’ Abandoned Infant Assistance Resource Center.

Learn more about David and his work at

Bill Isaacs

Dr. William Isaacs is Founder and president of Dialogos, a consulting and leadership development firm based in Cambridge, MA and a Senior Lecturer at the Sloan School of Management. He is a leading authority on collective leadership, dialogue, and the design and implementation of organizational learning. He is also Chairman of the Board of the Dialogos Institute, a not-for-profit action research organization.

His book, Dialogue and the Art of Thinking Together (Doubleday), has been translated into seven languages, including Swedish, Chinese, and German. It was featured in Fast Company as a guide to “the secret of good informal conversation,” and has been acclaimed by a variety of reviewers as the definitive guide to profound change through speaking and listening. Change Management Monitor, a publication of reviews of management books, included Dialogue and the Art of Thinking Together in its list of the twelve most significant business books. Isaacs’ has published widely. His articles have appeared in The Fifth Discipline Fieldbook by Peter Senge et al. (1994, Doubleday), in The Dance of Change by Peter Senge et al. (1999, Doubleday), and in numerous articles and journals.

In 1990, Isaacs co-founded (with Peter Senge) the Center for Organizational Learning at MIT, a consortium of 25 leading companies dedicated to cross-organizational learning and change. He received a major grant from the Kellogg Foundation to found and run the MIT Dialogue Project, which initiated a decade of cross-boundary conversational experiments around the world.

For the past 20 years, Isaacs has consulted to senior leaders of prominent organizations around the world assisting them in creating visionary transitions and maturing the collective leadership of their systems. His work focuses on producing generative change that can engage large numbers of people, leading to “learning at scale.” He has also focused on the integration of functional and technical organizations into business leadership, the transformation of management union relationships, and the means to produce “organic growth” by creating cross-boundary and cross-functional
transformation and action. Some recent clients include BP, the International Finance Corporation (and the World Bank Group), W.K. Kellogg Foundation, Royal Bank of Scotland, NASA, Shell, Motorola, the Institute for Liberty and Democracy, and Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Joint Strike Fighter Program.

Isaacs received an A.B. in policy studies from Dartmouth College, an M.Sc. in political philosophy from the London School of Economics, and an M.Phil. and D. Phil from Oxford University in organizational behavior, social theory, and applied social psychology. He lives with his family in the Boston area.

Carolyn Lukensmeyer

Dr. Carolyn J. Lukensmeyer, Founder and President of AmericaSpeaks, has made her mark as an innovator in deliberative democracy, public administration, and organizational development. Concerns about the deep partisan divide in Washington and the growing disconnection between citizens and government across the country led Carolyn to launch AmericaSpeaks in 1995. Her goal is to develop new democratic practices that will strengthen citizen voice in public decision-making.

Under Carolyn’s leadership, AmericaSpeaks has earned a national reputation as a leader in the field of deliberative democracy and democratic renewal. She and AmericaSpeaks have won a number of awards, including two from the International Association for Public Participation (2001 and 2003), the Organizational Development Network’s Sharing the Wealth Award (2006), Housing and Urban Development (HUD) for best practices, a Distinguished Service Award from the Federal Managers Association for Outstanding Leadership (1994) and a Best Practice Award from the National Training Laboratories Institute in 1993.

Prior to founding AmericaSpeaks, Carolyn served as Consultant to the White House Chief of Staff from November 1993 through June 1994. In this capacity she ensured that systematic thinking was part of the White House’s work on internal management issues and on government-wide reform. She also served as the Deputy Project Director for Management of the National Performance Review (NPR), Vice President Al Gore’s reinventing government task force. From 1986 to 1991, Carolyn served as Chief of Staff to Governor Richard F. Celeste of Ohio. She was both the first woman to serve in this capacity and, at the time of her appointment, the only Chief of Staff recruited from the professional management field.

An avid traveler and outdoors adventurer, Carolyn has led a rafting expedition down the Colorado River, tracked panda bears in the remote Sichuan Province of China, and trekked in major mountain ranges all over the world. She currently lives in Washington, D.C.

Najeeba Syeed-Miller

Najeeba Syeed-Miller is currently the Executive Director of the Western Justice Center Foundation (, a conflict resolution and dialogue based organization that works with communities, children and courts to increase the opportunity for peaceful conflict resolution and displace the power of violence in our society.

She oversaw a tripling of the organization’s budget and staffing and the development of environmental conflict resolution programs, violence prevention and interracial relations training throughout LA County for parents, expansion and creation of a gang intervention program in the San Gabriel Valley, technical assistance to over 30 clients such as the LA County Mental Health Commission on the development of school based curricula and leadership for community leaders, innovative dialogue programs between Latino/African American communities that reduced the incidences of hate crimes, development of an award winning mediation and dialogue program between community and police (the only one in Southern California), crisis response intervention in community and school settings, instruction and curriculum development for educators in the area of conflict resolution, partnerships with institutions such as the Art Center College of Design on instructing arts based university students in the area of conflict resolution. She has traveled to and trained relief workers, students, faculty and crisis intervention NGO’s in the areas of mediating and designing dialogue processes for complex historical conflicts in various locations around the United States, India, Latin America, Africa, Afghanistan and Guam.

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