See what our clients say about working with Community Building International

I have believed passionately in the idea of community for years, and here I was being given the chance to learn how to do it.

I wasn’t disappointed. It’s somehow profoundly simple but life changing, and I can’t quite find words to describe it. I feel as if something has happened inside me, and I now have a different way of being, both with myself and in the world.

Kathryn Goodman

I feel that the experience has changed my life.

I came away with the determination that I wanted to live my life more fully with the people around me. Superficial relationships were no longer enough; I wanted full and intimate communication, to be accepted for who I am, and to fully accept my friends and enjoy their differences.

B. McWhorter M.D.
General Practitioner

I have experienced the power and potential

of Community Building (CB) training.  Edward Groody’s supportive facilitating style was able to shift the group to much deeper levels of relationships and create bonds that have had a lasting impact on my life. I recommend the Workshop to anyone who is searching for authenticity in their lives and success in their organization or business.

John Pehrson, Manager
DuPont, Wilmington, Delaware

Being a part of the United Way,

I have been to many, many workshops over the course of my 30+ professional career. Without a doubt, the CB Workshop was the best workshop I ever attended. My hope is that as many leaders as possible in our community will be able to attend.

Ben Landers, President and CEO
United Way of Greater Knoxville

CB is an opportunity to learn what it means to be everything we are

as individuals, in the deepest part of ourselves AND at the same time to encourage and inform what it means to be a responsible member of various groups and communities to which we belong. It’s been invaluable. Edward Groody is a deeply gifted and trusted facilitator and teacher.

Kyle Lehning
Multiple Grammy Award Winning Record Producer

I have worked with Edward Groody for the last four years

in a variety of settings and two very different companies within a large health system. In each case, we were able to achieve dramatic improvements with measurable positive results.  As the senior leader for each company, I believe I have gained immeasurably in my knowledge of change management, organizational dynamics, community building, and personal leadership skills through the relationship and work with Edward and his team. Like many leaders today, we did not possess the understanding and techniques to drive the rapid changes required for a successful turnaround effort in these organizations. I cannot say enough about the integrity he brings to his work in addition to the “technical” expertise.  I believe our results say the rest.

Jan McNally, Chief Administrative Officer
Methodist Medical Center

My Community Building experience has become one of the most memorable moments in my life.

The trauma I experienced in my past created barriers that affected me socially and professionally. The only way I could truly move forward was to address my internal issues. The CB Workshop was ‘the one experience’ that provided a breakthrough and led to my success at work and in life.

Shyrida Townsend, Manager
Transform Milwaukee Job Program

The CB Workshop

has by far, been one of the most impactful and honest processes that I have ever been a part of. I can’t recommend it enough. Knoxville is putting so much effort into partnerships, working together, working smarter not harder to solve social issues, but this can’t be accomplished without trust. These workshops give you, gave me, the opportunity to learn about myself, what I brought to the table and to use that same process to view others with compassion and understanding. These workshops will do that and more, they couldn’t be more timely.

Claudia Caballero, Executive Director
Centro Hispano

I was so moved by our weekend

I have attended many silent retreats and went through the Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) course as a participant, the MBSR facilitator training/internship, and lead an 8-week MBSR course. I believe that what I experienced in the Community Building weekend was more profound than any of my retreats or meditation courses. I am deeply humbled and grateful for my experience.

Behavioral Health Therapist-IT, MSW, APSW

I recommend the CB methodology, training principles and skills to anyone who wants to build a safe and open environment within their organization

and to experience the depth that we usually only experience in an intimate setting. We benefitted by having the entire organization attend. For me personally, the training has helped my day-to-day interpersonal communication, especially to listen better, and talk less.

Tomáš Hasala, CEO
Nexteria, Slovakia

CB has been the cornerstone of our work with former offenders for 15+ years.

It achieves more in three days than the best designed programs achieve in 30. I highly recommend the CB process to anyone, anywhere, anytime. Come! Especially if you think you don’t need it.

Tim Dempsey
Chattanooga Endeavors, Reentry Program

Community Building has completely changed the culture

of our organization on every level. Our team has become more honest and expressive with one another, allowing for increased productivity and an improved morale. Employees have stated that Community Building has changed their lives; I know it has definitely changed mine. We are committed to offering the CBW experience to all of our employees and embedding the CBW principles into our operational structure.

Dawn Barnett, Co-Executive Director
Running Rebels

This was a transformative experience

for me, we were able to be open and honest with and about ourselves. We listened, we united, and we bonded as we talked about how to address some of the tough issues facing our community. There were no preconceptions or judgment, we met people where they were, took a trip through our experiences and landed on community.

Tyvi Small, Vice Chancellor Diversity and Engagement
The University of Tennessee

I learned more about listening in 3 days

than I did in 3-Years of Psychology graduate school.

Masters Degree Social Work student
University of Tennessee

Mandatory trainings

are usually not as interesting as other kinds of trainings. They can have a been there, done that feel. The training provided by Edward Groody definitely does not have that feeling. It is engaging and interactive, practical and it meets all the legal requirements. Ed is our go to, preferred trainer.

Cara Stein, Co-Chief Operating Officer
William Morris Agency New York

On my first day as General Manager,

Edward Groody had been preselected by management to help facilitate a major financial and cultural turnaround effort. The employees were very frustrated.  Ed guided our redesign work and Community Building planning events so that it involved all the employees at all their different levels. People were engaged and stayed engaged. Looking back, everything could not have gone better. Now–four years later–employees are still contributing and actively identifying opportunities for improvement.

Roger Goff, General Manager
Valley Craft, Inc.

I believe that Community Building is one of the most innovative programs

to be introduced to Milwaukee in recent history. Everyone is searching for a magic bullet. I was skeptical when I signed up for a CB Workshop. Now, I hope to see a day when this experience is shared by countless others so that we can build real Community outside our private rooms and into our neighborhoods, homes, and workplaces.

Jamie Elder, Director of the Office of Urban Development
Wisconsin Department of Children & Families

CB is integrated into graduate/upper-level undergraduate Social Work courses.

The combined practices of mindfulness and CB prepare students for service work in the community including trauma-informed care; they also help students develop greater self-mastery, becoming more skillful in managing and resolving their own adversity and suffering.

Dimitri Topitzes, PHD, Social Work
University of Wisconsin

Community Building is the team building approach

undertaken by the most effective organizations. Edward Groody’s CB approach offers a process and the tools and skills needed to effectively build trust and implement change.

William Q. Judge, Ph.D., Professor of Strategic Management, Old Dominion University (ODU)
Visiting Professor Copenhagen Business School

I would describe my first CB Workshop as a milestone event in my life.

If I might borrow a phrase from the Jesuit Volunteer Corps, the experience left me “ruined for life”. Not only did I learn ways of communicating openly and relating closely with people – I simultaneously put those lessons into practice. My first Workshop unlocked ways of being with other people that I thought took months or even years to develop.

Lee Valentyn, Social Worker
Journey House

Community Building brought significant culture change

to our company. At the time, Dalen was experiencing tremendous growth that was forcing organizational changes. Through management retreats, team building, and Community Building experiences, …. our work with Edward Groody resulted in dramatic positive organizational and cultural change. He is an excellent facilitator of large scale and small-scale change, team development and company events. Ed has become an indispensable element in our company improvement efforts.

David Caldwell, CEO
Dalen Products, Inc.

The WI Dept. Children and Family Services is proud to be the pioneer of the first-ever citywide Community Building initiative in Milwaukee, WI.  

CBI’s trainings have improved outcomes in critical programs such as: public safety, TANF, W2, recidivism, job placement, juvenile justice, substance abuse treatment, and more. An initially unplanned benefit has been an increase in genuine collaboration amongst nonprofit and government agencies – and the city’s capacity to address complicated problems of violence reduction, crime, and collective trauma. I encourage you to seriously consider any opportunity to bring CBI’s work into your group, agency, collaboration, city, or state.

Eloise Anderson, Secretary
Wisconsin Dept. Children and Family Services

Our company recently launched an enterprise-wide Lean initiative.

Edward Groody did a masterful job guiding us through redesign processes, change methods and  Community Building events that have dramatically changed our culture, boosted our employee engagement and built trusting relationships among various team members. Ed is a truly gifted subject expert that can be trusted to help guide and mentor any organization in the art of Change Management.

Anthony Zwart, Director of Aluminum Operations
Le Sueur Incorporated, Le Sueur, MN

My experience with these CB workshops is that they are unique and transformative.

I believe they hold the promise to heal and transform individuals and communities like nothing else that I have seen or experienced.  I highly recommend them. Edward Groody’s expertise and wisdom as trainer has been invaluable as Milwaukee becomes a hub for Community Building facilitation worldwide.

Clarence Johnson, CEO
Wisconsin Community Services

Our health system initiated a massive conversion of information systems

over two years ago. Thankfully, we utilized Edward Groody to help facilitate and guide our change process. Without Edward’s consultation and facilitation at each step of the way, the amount of real buy-in and change implemented during this time would not have been possible.

Gaye Jolley, President & Chief Administrative Officer
Roane Medical Center

I had the good fortune to meet Edward Groody

at the start of a very challenging phase of my own career. Since that fortuitous meeting, Ed has been a source of guidance and counsel in a number of different areas including executive coaching, training, culture & community building, process mapping and restructuring initiatives. There are good consultants out there, but what sets Ed apart is his personal character. In addition to being a subject matter expert who is always up to speed on cutting edge methodologies, Ed brings an intuitive and spiritual wisdom to his work. This wisdom, coupled with his profound insights and great personal strength, make him stand out from the crowd.

Kim Koser, Vice President Corporate Human Resources
William Morris Agency, Los Angeles, CA

I felt that CB may have some answers for the Dept. Corrections specifically for younger offenders.

I now believe it presents a process of healing for everyone: inmate, staff, and the community as a whole. The effect that the process had on this group of men was more than I could have imagined.

Colleen Frye, social worker

I have had the opportunity to collaborate with Edward

with a number of my clients and he always delivers outstanding results. He has a unique ability to elevate the skills and performance of the people he is leading and working with. Edward always works at the highest level of integrity to serve his clients. Community Building, employee engagement and overall culture rise dramatically with the tools and skills he brings into an organization. The strong work that Edward has done with my clients has resulted in not only great business results, but also in deeper client relationships.

Greg Thomas, Business Development Specialist
Enterprise MN

What our group experienced was nothing short of transformational healing.

We began as 40 individuals from diverse walks of life… police and correctional officers, politicians, neighborhood leaders, community builders, pastors and healers. The safe environment and peer support gave us the courage to share personal experiences that were the underpinnings for racial and role prejudices. Yes, there was conflict, but also respect as we grew in our acceptance of one another. From the raw honesty emerged empathy, dismantling walls, and bonding us for our Milwaukee community.

Lois B., Contemplative Outreach
Milwaukee, WI

Le Sueur has used the services of Edward Groody over the past year with a transition to Lean manufacturing.

We recognize that a significant part of a successful Lean transformation has to do with employee empowerment, engagement and high levels of trust at all levels of the organization. Edward has been particularly helpful in all of these areas. He is highly skilled, has a non-confrontational approach that gets results, and he isn’t afraid to take on the difficult issues. I wholeheartedly recommend him to other companies.

Dale Walker, Director, Continuous Improvement and IT
Le Sueur Incorporated, Le Sueur, MN

Participating in the process of transforming a very diverse group of strangers

into a caring, connected community was nothing short of amazing. This is peace-making on both an intrapersonal and interpersonal level. It’s an experience I wish everyone could have and I look forward to participating again.

Linda L. Graham, MS, LPC/MHSP

Although I moved to Milwaukee three years ago,

this was the first time I felt connected to a larger community. I felt loved, accepted, and affirmed. My life is crazy busy and I found peace and solitude amongst a group of people that were there for the same reasons I was: to make Milwaukee safer, better, more peaceful and healthier. I continue to apply the principles of community building in my everyday life. I use them all the time. The community building experience was life changing and I would recommend it to anyone or any community that is wanting to heal and move forward with their lives in a collective, cohesive way.


Joan Blakey, Ph.D. MSW, Associate Professor
University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Helen Bader School of Social Welfare

What did you do to those people (job candidates)?

This was by far the most attentive group ever! Everyone was alert during the orientation. I didn’t have to tell anyone to turn off their phone. People asked good questions. I want to hire them on a permanent basis following their temporary assignments. Please make sure that every candidate you send me going forward gets Community Building!

 John Weigman, City of Milwaukee DPW Fleet Operations Manager

The training provided was highly engaging,

interactive, and practical –  it met all the requirements. Edward is our go to, preferred trainer.

Cara Stein, Co-Chief Operating Officer
William Morris Agency New York

I’ve never seen such a positive response

from a training. Edward’s approach was interesting, lively and highly interactive. The participants loved it and I saw immediate results. He’s the first person I’d call or recommend.

Yvonne Vega, Director, Global Human Resources
Fox Mobile Group, Los Angeles, CA

This workshop renewed my faith in humanity, and my belief in myself and self-worth.

It was human interaction on the deepest, most meaningful level. I will take this experience and the skills and insights I learned out into all aspects of my life… I would absolutely recommend this process to anyone and everyone in all organizations, institutions, families and partnerships.

Liz M., Peace Studies graduate program
University of Wisconsin Milwaukee, Sept. 2023

One of the most profound experiences

of community is offered by Community Building International. Patterned on the principles of M. Scott Peck, MD, the distinguished author and champion of community, the CBI training encourages participants to confront and remove barriers to true vulnerability, to confront fears that mitigate against real connection and to overcome them. Participation in the process takes courage. It requires deep respect for the humanity and potential of other participants. It requires the deepest personal commitment and desire to achieve something greater than one’s individual self can realize or achieve in isolation. It is also entirely worth the effort.

Bill Hicks
retired healthcare executive

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