October 25, 2004

Partners in Action

Attendance: 9 members, 2 friends and 19 guests


Desmond Berghofer welcomed people on behalf of the Institute and asked them to introduce themselves. This is the fourth of five mini-conferences being held in 2004. Brief reference was made to the previous events and to several ongoing projects being supported by the Institute. Further information can be found at www.ethicalleadership.com.


The program was introduced by Gerri Schwartz who made the following points:

Diane Jennings, Chair of the Relationships and Personal Development Sector, took over the meeting and introduced the guest speakers.

Brenda Broughton. Brenda is the Chief Operating Officer of Rehabilitative Ergonomics Inc., a national rehabilitative service organization. She is also the former mayor of Lions Bay and is committed to a team-based approach. In her presentation Brenda told a number of stories to illustrate important principles.

Judy Stevens. Judy has an international and business background. She is a keynote speaker and is very active in the Liberal party. Judy chose one story to illustrate the power of partnering.

Andrea Reimer. Andrea is Vancouver School Board Trustee and the only elected member of the Green Party in Canada. She is also the Executive Director of the Western Canada Wilderness Committee and is active on several other boards and agencies.
She spoke about how things changed in the Vancouver School district when relationships changed.


Members of the audience were asked to find a partner they did not know and share an inspiring story. They would be asked to volunteer to tell their partner's story when the plenary reconvened.

Audience Presentations

Three members of the audience shared their partner's stories:

  1. About a visual artist and sculptor who got into the depths of his own emotions in a performance.
  2. About a partnership of Jewish and Muslim people who are building bridges across their differences.
  3. About a teacher of Dru Yoga who resonated to the teaching of a spiritual leader and now is involved in work with the Peace Flame.

Connections III

Gerri Schwartz led a discussion about Connections III. This is a major conference the Institute is planning to hold in 2005. Gerri referred briefly to the two previous conferences, Connections I (1999) and Connections II (2001). The “Connections” theme is an example of the relationships agenda of tonight's meeting in the form of building bridges between people and organizations. We have heard tonight about how big things come from small beginnings and how large organizations can be renewed by looking at themselves in a different way.

The question for discussion is: What kind of bridges should we cross in Connections III? Several ideas were advanced:

Gerri asked for a show of hands of who would be interested in coming to such an event. Most people in the room indicated their interest. Gerri suggested that everyone in the room was the centre of a network of some kind. What if we were able to bring these organizations into the room to have a meaningful experience and plan the follow-up steps at the same time?

Gerri said that she and Diane see the Relationships theme to be at the core of what the Institute is about. Everything begins with an ethical relationship. She invited people to become a Friend or Member of the Institute and work with us on planning Connections III.

More Networking

Gerri invited people to have another sharing relationship with a stranger for about 10 minutes.

Next Meeting

Maggie Gold, Chair of the Health and Wellness Sector, distributed a flyer describing the next meeting on November 22. The topic is “Putting Prevention into Health Care.”

As part of the recent Health Accord between Canadian First Ministers, for the first time in the history of the Canadian Health Care System, the concepts of “prevention” and maintaining good health have been recognized and identified as items to be funded. The question now facing Health Authorities is what policies and programs will they implement in the field of “Prevention.?”

The Institute has decided to take a proactive stance and offer its help in answering these questions. We have invited representatives from the Fraser Basin and Coastal Health Authorities to come to the meeting on November 22 and briefly speak to their need for public input. Then the rest of the meeting will be devoted to gathering ideas from the participants and crafting this into a report to be submitted to Government and other responsible agencies.

This promises to be an exciting, interactive event

November 22, 2004: 5:30 – 8:30 p.m., Vancouver Public Library
Theme: Health and Wellness
Topic: Putting Prevention into Health Care

Everyone is invited to come and bring others.

Please confirm attendance by November 18 to Desmond Berghofer at 604-734-2544 or by e-mail to desgerri@direct.ca.