Angela Park is a consultant, researcher, and writer dedicated to making social justice and equity hallmarks of progressive institutions—across advocacy, policymaking, philanthropy, education, and business. She helps mission-driven organizations embed social justice and equity throughout their operations and programs, bringing three decades of experience on sustainable development policy, environmental justice, equity and diversity, and organizational and leadership development.
Angela has worked with nonprofits, coalitions, foundations, philanthropic networks, governmental agencies at all levels, educational institutions, and companies across the consumer products, banking, technology, retail, communications, insurance, and utilities industries. She researched and wrote Equity in Sustainability (2014) and Everybody’s Movement: Environmental Justice and Climate Change (2009) and her work has been published by The Diversity Factor, Grist, and Yale University and featured in The Washington Post and Audubon. She was an adjunct professor at Antioch New England where she co-taught a graduate course in Environmental Advocacy and Organizing. Previously, Angela worked at The White House in both terms of the Clinton-Gore administration, managing sustainable communities policy and constituency engagement at the President’s Council on Sustainable Development. She led research and recommendations to the President on wide-ranging issues from civic participation and environmental justice to sustainable economic development and smart growth. She coordinated state-level sustainable development initiatives at the Center for Policy Alternatives, focusing on legislation to promote renewable energy, public transportation, energy efficiency, and environmental justice. Angela co-founded and served as deputy director of the Environmental Leadership Program where she created its leadership development programming and launched and facilitated two collaborative peer learning networks on environmental leadership and diversity in the environmental field. She participated in the inaugural class of the Donella Meadows Leadership Fellows Program and was named a Young Woman of Achievement by the Women’s Information Network in Washington, DC. She graduated from the NTL Institute’s Diversity Practitioner Certificate Program and studied psychology, environmental studies, and journalism at Boston University. Angela has served as a director on numerous nonprofit boards and is currently an advisor to the Kresge Foundation’s Climate Resilience and Urban Opportunity Initiative. She recently concluded a major energy retrofit and renewable energy installation with her family and is on an ongoing mission to expand perennial and vegetable gardens at their home in Vermont.
The Science Behind Our Practice
Our work is grounded in established methodologies and models of human and organizational behavior, including, but not limited to the following:
The competencies of emotional intelligence (self-awareness, self-management, social awareness and relationship management) account for an individual’s ability to understand their own and others’ emotions and use that information to guide decision-making and action. Research has shown that leaders who master the competencies of emotional intelligence have a distinct advantage.
Positivity & Resilience
The incredible developments in neuroscience research over the last several decades have enabled a greater understanding of how practices that promote positivity and resilience—both individually and organizationally—have a significant and lasting impact on our capacity for creative thinking, productivity, efficiency, empathy, focus and more.
Developed by Richard Boyatzis, the Intentional Change Model underpins successful leadership development programs by supporting an individual or group in intentionally moving through five stages of change that close the gap between a current “real” self and a clearly articulated “ideal” self.
Appreciative Inquiry, developed by David Cooper Rider, is a strengths-based model of analysis, decision-making and strategic change that clarifies the assets and motivations that are an organization’s strengths in order to build or rebuild an organization based on what is working rather than trying to fix what doesn’t.
Resistance and Cycle of Change
People are at their most creative in their resistance. The Gestalt cycle of change maps the critical stages of change that all members of a group must experience in order to optimize success and minimize resistance. Disruption of the cycle manifests in very specific levels of resistance that can be effectively mitigated through intentional responses.
Mindfulness is the awareness that one develops through paying attention to the present moment through your five senses without judgment. In addition to relieving stress and building resilience, even a simple mindfulness practice can significantly expand your range of options in any given moment. Incorporating mindfulness into any process of change or development supports an individual or group by rewiring the brain for more intentional responses and behaviors.
Dynamic Inquiry, developed by Annie McKee and the Teleos Leadership Institute, is a method of discovery that uncovers an organization’s emotional reality–what people care about, what is working well, and what’s getting in the way. The purpose of the inquiry is twofold: 1) to identify underlying issues related to culture and leadership that are helping or hindering implementation of a strategy; and 2) to build ownership and commitment to the mission, vision, strategy, ideal culture and leadership framework among key stakeholders.