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National Network of ToP Trainers

Our national network of skilled and experienced ToP® Trainers train over 4,000 people each year on ToP Facilitation Methods.

If you would like to connect with a particular trainer, or if you are interested in learning more about the journey to become a ToP Trainer, submit an inquiry through the Contact Us button.

Trainers appear alphabetically by first name. Use your browser's search function to find a particular trainer.

Irina Fursman

Certified ToP Facilitator (CTF) and Mentor Trainer - Minneapolis, MN

A premier facilitator and OD practitioner, Irina guides teams through strategic planning, change and engagement initiatives. Irina also teaches the art and science of facilitation. Born in the USSR, Irina spent the first half of her life in Russia, Crimea and Ukraine. She moved to the US in 2002 and co-founded the Institute of Cultural Affairs Ukraine. Irina delivers lively, inspiring experiences for communities and organizations.

 

 

 

 

Jen Schanen-Materi

Certified ToP Facilitator (CTF) and Qualified Trainer - Green Bay, WI

Jen Schanen-Materi has facilitated and trained diverse groups including the New Mexico Breastfeeding Task Force, Great Lakes InterTribal Council, and the Wisconsin Coalition Against Sexual Assault. Jen integrates ToP facilitation methods into her classroom at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay to create a safe and participatory learning environment. Jen presently serves as BSW field coordinator and lecturer in the Social Work Professional Programs at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay. Jen is an APSW (Advanced Practice Social Worker-Wisconsin), and received both her Masters and Bachelors of Social Work from the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay. Previously, Jen worked at a grassroots nonprofit, serving primarily Native American children and families. Jen coordinated domestic violence, sexual assault, and teen pregnancy prevention and outreach efforts—both in direct practice settings with youth and community, and in program development and evaluation capacities. Jen has also worked alongside survivors of domestic violence and adults with disabilities.

Jennifer Obinna

Certified ToP Facilitator (CTF) and Mentor Trainer - St. Paul, MN

Dr. Jennifer Obinna, Director of Consulting at The Improve Group, has a background in social work, violence against women, primary prevention, program evaluation and social science research methods. She provides high-quality evaluation, research, facilitation and planning services to clients from a variety of local, state and national organizations that includes governments and non-profits. She received her Masters of Science in Social Work and her Ph.D. in Social Welfare from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

 

 

 

Jeremy Kautza

Certified ToP Facilitator (CTF) and Qualified Trainer -Madison, WI

Jeremy Kautza brings over 20 years of facilitation experience in a wide variety of settings to the HueLife team. Currently, he also works as an internal consultant for the University of Wisconsin where he brings in-depth expertise in strategic planning, conflict resolution, organizational change management, and participatory facilitation methods to the units he serves. Prior to his time at the UW, he served as the director of the Office of Interest-Based Problem-Solving at Madison Area Technical College where he led a team of facilitators who supported individuals, departments, and cross-functional teams in policy writing, conflict resolution, strategic planning, process improvement, and issue analysis. Jeremy has also worked as a consultant for several public entities and non-profit organizations helping them resolve conflicts and make decisions that bring people together and move the organization forward. He is deeply committed to the principles of inclusion and profound respect. Jeremy has a Bachelor of Science degree in mathematics and a Masters of Science degrees in curriculum and instruction and in educational leadership and policy analysis, all from UW–Madison.

John Baker

Mentor Trainer - Austin, TX

John D. Baker is the founder of Core Factors, an independent consulting firm that focuses on critical economic, workforce, education and social issues that affect the resiliency and economic vitality of communities and regions. John has provided organizational consulting for over 35 years primarily with government and the nonprofit sectors. His work has entailed a large spectrum of workforce and economic development agencies, community colleges, mayors’ and governors’ offices, enabling them to respond to changing needs within volatile environments. His international consulting clients include the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and the UK Commission on Employment and Skills. Throughout his career, John has worked on a variety of initiatives involving regional economic development, career technical education, workforce diversity, reemployment strategies for laid off workers, youth employment schemes, welfare to work programs, coordinated community transportation, immigrant integration into the local workforce, as well as unique programs serving individuals with disabilities. John is a member of the International Association of Facilitators. He holds a Master’s Degree from the University of Texas at Austin and a Bachelor of Arts from Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois.

John Beranek

Qualified Trainer - Sioux Fall, SD

John Beranek is a skilled presenter, teacher and motivator. He uses story-telling, discussion, music and group interaction to promote awareness and change. John’s experience in the field of strategy and system change spans over 25 years. John’s unique style goes beyond merely consulting. He nourishes conversation, motivates action and above all, builds trust among groups, engaging them to work together. His energy and non-threatening approach empowers people to make a positive difference in themselves, organization/company or community. ToP methods are used in nearly every presentation, workshop or strategy session.

Affiliations: Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholars team coach Art of Hosting trainer Dakota Rising Entrepreneur Co-Hort process coach Sherwood Foundation Catalyst Host

Judy Weddle

Certified ToP Facilitator (CTF) and Mentor Trainer - Lincoln City, OR

Judy Weddle teaches both introductory and advanced facilitation courses; and she serves as part of a team of assessors of those desiring ToP certification. 
 Judy’s skill as a Mentor Trainer is grounded in her 30 years of practical experience as a professional facilitator, where she worked in public participation, international rural development as well as organizational development and strategic planning.

As a facilitator Judy creates a safe environment for individuals to share differences and to find common ground. As a trainer she seeks to demonstrate that facilitation skills are accessible and can be applied by those open to learning them. She has worked in the health, education, government, and non-profit sectors. Additionally, she has worked with foundations, international non-government groups and in public participation projects. 

Judy is a partner in Facilitation Services Chicago with Dennis Jennings.

Karla Hill-Donisch

Certified ToP Facilitator (CTF) and Mentor Trainer - Minneapolis, MN

Ms. Hill-Donisch has over 25 years of training design development and execution, strategic planning, and facilitation experience. Karla is an Inspirational Training and Development Professional with a Master’s Degree in Human Development and a reputation for designing and delivering trainings that energize, educate and motivate participants to put learning into action for the benefit of the organization. Karla is known for her ability to work interactively with clients to understand training needs, make accurate appraisals and design useful and effective programs. She has a reputation for creating safe, open and fun environments that serve as catalysts for experimentation and change.

Kathleen Osta

Mentor Trainer - Asheville, NC

As President of Vital Clarity, Kathleen Osta designs and facilitates highly participatory meetings to help organizations fulfill their potential and purpose. She has mastery of consensus facilitation methods that articulate the alignment within groups, and trains leaders in their use. She specializes in corporate, nonprofit and personal strategic planning, public sector facilitative leadership training, and nonprofits through mergers. Her professional career began in the human services arena. Since 1989 her work has focused on leading groups to set and achieve measurable outcomes by eliciting commitment to jointly-developed team plans. Equipped to work within many professional arenas, Kathleen has depth of experience in the social services, health care, public sector, education, private sector industries, and early childhood programs. She is also certified to conduct the “Managing Change” program developed by ChangeWorks Global. Kathleen has a B.A. in Sociology from Nazareth College of Rochester, NY and more than 30 years of management and consulting experience. She designs meetings that entice individuals and groups to move beyond their previous limits.

Kim Howe

Certified ToP Facilitator (CTF) and Mentor Trainer - Omaha, NE

Kim Howe is the founding principal at CoCreative Labs.  She brings over 15 years’ experience supporting strategic planning, innovation, community engagement, and multi-stakeholder collaboration in the public, private, and nonprofit sectors.  Her clients range from multi-million dollar global firms, state and municipal governments, universities, and national non-profits to neighborhood associations, youth groups, faith communities, and small business startups.  She is skilled in a range of tools, models, and methods for merging inclusive participation with holistic organizational and community change.

 

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