“As a crisis center, it is in our fabric to listen with compassion, to not judge, to hold hope, and to believe in a better day. These practices form a foundation for our agency that was strengthened by Laurin’s gender diversity training with our staff. Laurin’s training focused on developing a culture of open communication which led to the deconstruction of the gender binary at our agency, an improved internal culture, and better service delivery to clients of all gender identities and expressions.”
– Kim Mizuhara
“Laurin has brought her extensive nonprofit experience and cross cultural competencies to bear in facilitating a number of our program staff retreats. Building rapport that engenders trust, openness and expansive thinking, she keeps us mindful of how our individual stories season the challenging decisions we make in our strategic approach to health philanthropy.
Her methods are organic, sprouting from and adapting to the group. Participants are artfully led toward the goal of the meeting in a way that feels effortless and genuine.
Staff leaves our retreat a closer group, feeling rejuvenated and invigorated, with strategies in hand to meet the year ahead.”
—Cristina M. Regalado, Vice President of Programs, The California Wellness Foundation
“Laurin is simply an amazing person to have worked with our immigrant leaders fellowship program. Laurin was viewed as a role model for the fellows and a mentor for the staff. She brings vast knowledge and experience collaborating with ethnically diverse communities. Her skills are unique and very valuable to groups working with grassroots communities. She will challenge organizations to do the best job possible for their constituents. She is passionate and dedicated to her work, reliable and organized. I highly recommend Laurin to organizations that are looking for guidance and direction.”
—Noe Paramo, Central Valley Partnership for Citizenship, Immigrant Leaders Fellowship Program
“Rubicon hired Laurin Mayeno to do two different engagements over the course of a couple of years. Her first engagement was with senior leadership, and her second was with a group of employees from throughout the organization, who self-identified as wanting to promote development of a workplace culture that supported everyone’s thriving. Laurin was equally effective with each group, helping us all to understand how to communicate with each other as effectively as possible. We recommend Laurin to any organization seeking to improve its effectiveness by strengthening internal communications.”
—Jane Fischberg, President and Executive Director, Rubicon Programs
“Laurin’s work with Family Paths has made a significant difference in our approach to building a culturally responsive agency. She has helped move us toward system change in a manner that was supportive and compassionate, while challenging some of our assumptions. At the same time she gently guided us to a deeper understanding of our strengths and challenges. We also appreciate Laurin’s warmth and humor; in our work with her over the span of one year she made the exploration of multiculturalism both fun and meaningful.”
—Marcella Reeves, Executive Director, Family Paths, Inc.
“Laurin’s candid, creative, and deeply informed consulting approach has been instrumental in CompassPoint’s work to become more fully multicultural. Our partnership with her has resulted in meaningful improvements to how we work together as a staff as well as to how we serve the nonprofit community. She helped our team look into diverse ways of defining leadership as we developed a program for next generation leaders of color. She worked with us to create a space for collaborative and self-reflective learning about one’s own leadership framework and its relationship to working within teams, organizations, networks, fields and the broader social system. She establishes an authentic place for learning and making our values visible.”
—Jeanne Bell, CEO, CompassPoint Nonprofit Services
“Our agency had attempted several times to address out effectiveness in working respectfully and effectively with families and among ourselves. Repeated efforts at one-time trainings had led to frustration and, if anything, made people more wary of talking about culture and power and their influence on our work and lives. We formed a Task Force for Cultural Responsiveness to address these issues, but soon realized that we couldn’t “do therapy on our own family.”
We had heard of Laurin’s work from other ‘satisfied customers,’ and from the first interview, it was clear that she and her colleague had the experience, insight, commitment and organizational skills to help us traverse new territory.
When there were some difficulties at an initial workshop Laurin dropped everything to come to a Task Force meeting to problem solve. This was a crucial turning point, and modeled not only practices of accountability, but also a commitment to the long-term work and relationship—building required for multicultural institutional change. They earned the trust of our leadership team and of the staff, as they continued to meet with us, and to provide consultation behind the scenes.
In staff meetings, they gathered our thoughts and feelings, organized what they heard and came back to us with ideas for action. This listening, this powerful ability to reflect and organize information, and this very practical action orientation provided just what we needed to get ‘un-stuck’ in our work around power and culture. And of course, getting unstuck in these conversations, and making policy to allow for more accountability to the families we serve and to ourselves, have enriched us as an agency. We have more tools to deal with those issues that too often are left out of dominant discourse, and more energy to treat each other well. The CVC continues to work to live up to its values, and is on course due to the foundation that Laurin’s skills and vision brought. We cannot thank her enough!”
—Lisa Berndt, Task Force for Cultural Responsiveness and Accountability, Center for the Vulnerable Child, Children’s Hospital & Research Center Oakland
“Laurin has contributed much to the well-being of the Alameda Health Consortium in our quest to strengthen our effectiveness as a team and improve communication among staff members. We hired Laurin to lead us through the challenging work of addressing issues of race, power and hierarchy in our organization. Laurin developed the workshop materials and facilitated the staff retreats. She exercised sound judgment, patience, integrity and respect. We are grateful to Laurin for providing us with the skills and structure so that we can continue this ongoing process on our own.”
—Lois Bailey Lindsey, Alameda Health Consortium