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Reclaiming Democracy: Changing the Way We Talk about Critical Issues

The July 2007 report by Barnett Pearce, Ph.D. (pictured), Reclaiming Democracy: Changing the Way We Talk about Critical Issues, has the subtitle “A Report of a Project to Engage Legislators in Dialogue and Suggestions for Moving Forward.” This report to the Kettering Foundation describes and reflects on a project done by a few members of the dialogue and deliberation community which resulted in a meeting on May 30, 2007, called “Reclaiming Democracy: Changing the Way We Talk about Critical Issues.” Download the report here.

Here is a list of participants at the May 2007 meeting…

Elected officials present at the meeting included:

  • Hawaii State Senator Les Ihara
  • Anthony Lin, member of Congresswoman Anna Eshoo’s staff
  • Jennifer Tang, member of Senator Barbara Boxer’s staff
  • Former member of congress Karan English
  • Former California State Assemblyman John Vasconcellos

Participants from the dialogue/deliberation community included:

  • Sandy Heierbacher, Director, National Coalition for Dialogue and Deliberation
  • Roberta Hollimon, League of Women Voters
  • Phil Thomas, Generative Dialogue Project
  • Betty Pruitt, Generative Dialogue Project
  • Phil Stewart, National Issues Forum Institute/Kettering Foundation
  • Jan Elliott, Director, Dialogue and Deliberation Certificate Program, Fielding Graduate University
  • Stephen Littlejohn, Public Dialogue Consortium

Social Innovators included:

  • Mike Hemphill, Associate Dean of Academic Affairs, Clinton School for Public Service
  • Brian Murphy, President, De Anza College
  • Rowena Tomaneng, Co-Director, Office of Civic and Community Engagement, De Anza College
  • Mayra Cruz, Co-Director, Office of Civic and Community Engagement, De Anza College
  • Elaine Shen, Civic Engagement Department, PBS station KQED

The meeting was designed by Kim Pearce, Barnett Pearce, Shawn Spano and Claire Laughlin, all members of the Public Dialogue Consortium, and facilitated by Claire Laughlin and Barnett Pearce. Kim Pearce coordinated the meeting. The students in Kim Pearce’s class “Facilitating Collaborative Communication” were observers and support staff for the meeting. Notes were taken by Bill Eadie and Jennifer Mair, faculty members at San Diego State University and De Anza College, respectively.

Resource Link: http://ncdd.org/rc/wp-content/uploads/2010/08/Pearce-ReclaimingDemo.doc

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