what others say

Regenerating Paradise

The story of Paradise, California and its neighbors was thoroughly disrupted by the Camp Fire on November 8, 2018.  As the wind-driven blaze devoured nine out of ten structures in the area, our people fled their homes, neighborhoods and community, toward uncertainty.   Over 50,000 of us were suddenly unhoused, disconnected, living in diaspora.  85 of (Continue Reading)

David Leon Zink Regenerating Paradise Board Chair August 30, 2021

Coaches Rising

We were lucky to partner with Bob and New Stories to design and facilitate the community integration track of our global coaching summit in 2020. The NewStories team masterfully guided participants through a learning arc inside of the two week online intensive. Through three carefully designed community sessions they helped attendees navigate, make sense of (Continue Reading)

Laurens van Aarle Co-founder August 30, 2021

Leadership Snohomish Country, Washington

NewStories has reminded me of what is possible. As I believe in ways to reinvent community, convene individuals for conversations that can change how we see and live in the world and look to change personal, organizational and regional narratives - the work seems daunting. It is easy to wonder if the conversations will have (Continue Reading)

Kathy Coffey Executive Director, Leadership Snohomish County July 12, 2021

The Camp Fire – November 8, 2018

On November 8, 2018, what came to be called the Camp Fire destroyed California’s beautiful town of Paradise in a single day, jumping from canyon to canyon, incinerating 19,000 structures, displacing nearly 50,000 people, and ultimately taking 85 lives. The scope of the destruction was almost unfathomable. Whole neighborhoods were reduced to ash and twisted (Continue Reading)

Allen Regenerating Paradise Executive Director April 30, 2021

Napa Valley Community Organizations Active in Disaster

Here in Napa, Bob has helped us think about our recovery from and preparedness for disaster in a different way.  He is insightful, one of the best listeners around and brings a calming energy to difficult work/times.  In recovery from the wildfires, part of our focus has been on bringing together and connecting people to (Continue Reading)

Dorothee Stangle Director, Napa Valley Community Organizations Active in Disaster March 12, 2019

Whidbey Institute, Washington

When growing into new stories, it is important to be able to look honestly at what is true today. That can be much more difficult than many of us realize, with plenty of opportunities for feelings of shame, overwhelm, blame, and grief. One of the many qualities I appreciate about Bob and the New Stories team (Continue Reading)

Heather Johnson Executive Director, Whidbey Institute March 12, 2019

New Mexico Health Equity Partnerships

The New Mexico Health Equity Partnership loves New Stories! New Stories truly knows how to partner with, listen to, and capture the stories of local grassroots organizations and communities. New Stories is authentic, creative, humble, and generous. When New Stories was on a listening tour in New Mexico, they attended our Statewide Gathering and graphically (Continue Reading)

Jessica Jensen Program Officer, New Mexico Health Equity Partnerships March 11, 2019

Working Across Japan

Since 2010 I’ve partnered with Bob in hundreds of workshops, retreats and events in Japan. Every time I am with Bob, I'm reminded of what kind of world we could create if we stayed true to ourselves. I’ve witnessed people (including myself!) being inspired and gaining courage to take a step forward to the future (Continue Reading)

Chie Aikawa Social- Focused Interpreter & GiFT Facilitator, www.j-gift.org February 28, 2019

Shambhala Authentic Leadership in Action

Bob Stilger helped bring the world to our gatherings in Nova Scotia, broadening our otherwise North American-centric perspective. In virtual and in-person meetings and gatherings, he created spaces for genuine dialogue, emergent insights and lasting connections. He did this through his natural and intuitive convening skills as well as his personal practice of showing up fully, with warmth, humor and humble wisdom. (Continue Reading)

Susan Szpakowski, Former Executive Director February 25, 2019

High River, Alberta, Canada

My community had experienced a devastating experience and I was fortunate enough to be trusted to support some recovery efforts. I had been introduced to Bob Stilger and NewStories through a mutual friend and I just knew he was the right person to help me. I love Bob’s gentle yet prodding way of inviting you to consider a truly new way of being and behaving. The default is to think you want to put things back the way it was, I knew this was a time to seize the possible and I needed help bringing others into that. (Continue Reading)

Jodi Dawson Our High River February 24, 2019

Change Agent, Inc, Japan

Our long time friend and mentor Bob Stilger has shown up in Japan in ordinary times as well as extraordinary time after the March 11, 2011 Triple Disasters. He has brought a variety of tools and methodologies to help people come together and talk so that we can move forward to a better future. Most importantly, (Continue Reading)

Riichiro "Rich" Oda, Founder February 23, 2019

FutureSessions, INC, Japan

Bob said to me that the definition of success for Japan might change, just after the huge earthquake on March 11th, 2011. He was at my back, supporting me, and changed my life to start a cross sectoral innovation company. His commitment has been unbelievable. He has been contributing hundreds of days to Japan to (Continue Reading)

Takahiko Nomura, Ph.D CEO, Future Sessions Inc. Professor, Kanazawa Institute of Technology February 19, 2019

ELOS Institute, Brazil

Bob has played a vital role in a moment of transition of Elos by deeply listening to what was possible for our organization what the story was that we were really willing to bring into this world. The last years he's supported our worldwide community to do the same, reading between the lines and words (Continue Reading)

Niels Koldewijn and Val Roca Program Managers, Instituto Elos February 15, 2019

Spokane County Health District

Bob Stilger, Co-President of  NewStories, helped us at the Spokane Regional Health District (SRHD) to formulate how we engage staff in the work we are doing on health equity. He introduced us to Berkana’s Two Loops which provided our team with a framework from which we can view transition and change. It was valuable to (Continue Reading)

Rowena Pineda Program Manager, Spokane Regional Health District February 14, 2019

Impact HUB – Amsterdam

Bob joined our Art of Hosting Societal Innovation team in 2016 bringing with him incredible and deep experience working with social innovators in diverse contexts, such as the USA, Zimbabwe and Japan in the aftermath of nuclear devastation. Moreover, his capacity to inspire and transmit the art of storytelling is a true gift. Not only does he carry a unique capability to translate meaning across cultures and contexts, but he does so with such genuine curiosity for discovering yet new layers of collective meaning in stories with the group that is present. (Continue Reading)

Tatiana Glad founder & director, Impact Hub Amsterdam, Art of Hosting Steward February 14, 2019

Sonoma State University

New Stories' Bob Stilger and Simone Torrey are grounded visionaries who understand that humanity's well-being is inextricably connected to the well-being of the planet. Their work in supporting the resilience and transformation of local communities is at once accessible and sophisticated, thoughtfully designed and adaptable, and overall, enacted with deep presence and wisdom. Bob and (Continue Reading)

M. Rako Fabionar The HUB at SSU February 11, 2019

Cherokee Nation

There is an ancient Cherokee value that is expressed by the term GaDuGi. It is most directly translated into the phrase “People coming together as one and working to help one another”. The people of New Stories brought this value to life for our communities. They modeled it for our people and our communities responded by opening their hearts to the work of building a better community. (Continue Reading)

Mark D Parman Evaluation & Outcomes Measurement Specialist,Community & Cultural Outreach February 7, 2019

Union Institute and University

I was grateful to have Bob Stilger on the faculty of the PhD Program in Interdisciplinary Studies in the Ethical and Creative Leadership concentration at Union Institute & University. He brought to his classes global leadership experience, including collaborating across cultures, and gave his students the opportunity to meet and interact with individuals creating change (Continue Reading)

Lois Melina, PhD Concentration Chair February 7, 2019

First Peoples Convening on Climate-Forced Displacement

Engaging NewStories for our gathering was one of the best decisions we made. Bob, Simone, Zulma and Susan facilitated the First Peoples Convening on Climate-Forced Displacement in the Fall of 2018, which UUSC co-organized along with our partners. They were present and engaged from the onset, helping us think through our preparations in all its (Continue Reading)

Salote Soqo Senior Partnership Officer, Climate Justice & Crisis Response - Unitarian Universalist Service Committee February 7, 2019

Transition US

In 2017 I had the good fortune of working with Bob Stilger on a project that began with brainstorming and ended with a learning cohort of participants from four countries. Looking at that trajectory now, I can’t imagine it being any other way. Bob holds an international perspective. He sees across boundaries, around corners, and into the cracks and crevasses that hold the puzzle of humanity together.

Through our work together my admiration and trust for Bob has grown. He is the real deal: thoughtful, deep, authentic, and kind. Just the kind of person you will want to work with too. (Continue Reading)

Carolyne Stanton Co-Director Transition US - www.transitionus.org February 4, 2019

West Virginia

Bob and his team embody a lost tradition of deep listening and holding a space in a forgotten way where all points of view are heard and respected. The process is elegant, yet simple. We all need this kind of facilitation to bridge the chasms between us that enable misunderstanding and “othering”. Respect, honoring people (Continue Reading)

Michael Brumage MD&MPH, West Virginia February 4, 2019

Sonoma County Rises

Working with NewStories has been filled with transformative experiences. After the fires devastated our Northern California community, we were searching for answers as to how our community could be intentional in its recovery to ensure that no one in our community fell through the cracks. A very overwhelming concept, being that our systems were not (Continue Reading)

Ana Lugo Steering Committee Member, Sonoma County Rises February 27, 2018

National Disability Services

Bob Stilger helped us connect with a whole community of like-minded workers in different parts of the world who see many of the same possibilities.. (Continue Reading)

July 26, 2014

St Lukes Health Initiatives

Bob was tasked to do something quite difficult: to defuse long-held tensions and perceptions, to supplant old habits and to establish new ways of seeing... (Continue Reading)

July 26, 2014

Margaret Wheatley

I have worked closely with Bob since 2000, when I invited him to join The Berkana Institute at a time when we were going global and focusing on supporting younger leaders in many different countries.. (Continue Reading)

July 26, 2014

Durban, South Africa

It is has been an eye-opening experience to interact with Bob over the years in his short trips to Southern Africa to work with us at the eThekwini Municipality’s INK ... (Continue Reading)

July 20, 2014

Cherokee Nation

Bob’s gentleness, humor and deft action as a facilitator kept the attention on the process and the people, rather than on him.... (Continue Reading)

June 19, 2014

Kufunda Learning Village, Zimbabwe

Bob has an ability to join in as a respectful and quiet listener who then brings perspective, language and models to what is going on, and what we are grappling with. When I started Kufunda at the beginning of this century, people did not really understand me or my intentions and so after a few months I hit a wall. And Bob was there to help me - once again to listen and support, to add perspective and voice to what I was going through, to ask questions, to offer gentle and respectful advice. And so during the first three years of Kufunda's life, many friends and particularly Bob became mentor and anchor from afar as I did the work on the ground that was needed to do to give birth to the images and dreams that resided within me. (Continue Reading)

Maaianne Knuth, Zimbabwe Kufunda Learning Village July 26, 2013

Pierce County Regional Support Network

After a long and demanding year as a new start-up in Pierce County, WA, I really wanted my staff to receive the gift of Bob so I could thank them for the incredible work they did as individuals and as a team... and to rejuvenate them by using personal and shared experiences, to identifying lessons that would drive our future path as an organization. By facilitating open and honest group conversation, Bob was able to create a safe environment that allowed us to maintain our authentic selves to build on our organizational and individual strengths.  (Continue Reading)

Cherie Dolezal Cherie Dolezal July 26, 2012