(9 of 40) Your Steering Committee

A couple of years ago I was invited to a day-long retreat as a member of the steering committee for my college's Teaching and Learning Cooperative. My friend and colleague, Paul Marshall, IS our TLC and he arranged for us to meet in a lovely space in Edmonds, Washington, and provided plenty of coffee, pastry, and fresh pears. Later we had a box lunch.

During our retreat we worked in small groups to create lists of what the TLC was doing well, what it could do better, and what we thought its priorities should be for the next year. We wrote our lists on posters and (if I remember right) cut pictures out of magazines to illustrate them.

As I drove home -- a beautiful, blue sky day in February -- I wondered why individuals don't have steering committees. Wouldn't you like to have a group of interested friends helping you map out your priorities? (I don't know about your friends, but mine won't usually agree to sit around a table talking about me for several minutes, let alone several hours.)

I think we do have our own versions of the steering committee. And I wonder if we could assemble this group a little more consciously. Maybe we could call it our "cheering committee."

Hmm. Some of the people on my steering committee: my friend Paul, Carolynne, my writing friends Priscilla and Janet and Margaret and Carla, my friends Shawna and Therese (each with her own set of girl-twins), Glenda Lewis, Emily Dickinson, Eleanor Roosevelt, Grace Paley. (Gee, suddenly I can think of too many to name.)

My steering committee likes my blog. Now that my novel is finished (!) I need to reconvene them so they can tell me what to work on next. ;)


  1. Wow, I am so honored. I absolutely would be on your cheering committee. I would also be on your steering committee since we all need a helping hand in navigating the waters of our pasts, our presents and our futures. Can't wait for Monday.

  2. You are right - we all can use help staying on track. For a while I had a group going called "mastermind", we were 5 or 6 gals, and we would meet once a week, we would share our goals, dreams, etc. and then update. We usually started each session with something such as an article about staying on track, clearing out clutter, etc. I loved it, but eventually disbanded. I love what you are doing with your site.


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