increase empathy, connect deeply, challenge old stories
and develop the skills to create more meaningful relationships.
The Narrative Method™ is an experience inspired by the values of social justice and influenced by people and concepts across many paradigms.
Our programs help participants put themselves aside, absorb new points of view and imagine the world through the eyes of another. Increased awareness, wonder, empathy and tolerance open the door to new perspectives that allow participants to correct their old stories and reclaim their lives.
The TNM journey interweaves compelling ideas, videos, relational activities, creative writing and thought-provoking conversations about the ways in which our lives and relationships are impacted by outside influences. We empower participants to discover their voice and agency. Our programs increase:
- Awareness of self and others
- Wonder and curiosity
- Empathy and tolerance for differences
- Speaking and listening skills
- Authentic self-expression
- Perspective on self, others and the world
- Ability to discover new ideas and possibilities
The inspiration for The Narrative Method was sparked in the 1980’s, when in addition to shooting spontaneous ‘guerilla improv’ videos on the street, Shari Foos was hosting underground salons where bursts of cutting-edge performances and disarming experiences created an environment where even strangers could become fast friends. By exposing her own vulnerability, she could playfully explore how far she could go with people and how far they would follow.
Shari made it safe for everyone to venture courageously into honest conversations or as she called it, “starting in the middle of love.” Injecting her quick wit to capture the audience, she could turn a serious moment into laughter or hold a mirror to reflect some ironic aspect of our shared humanity.
After becoming a Marriage and Family Therapist she found the work to be profound and transformative. But she missed the power of the “aha” moments that come from recognizing that our stories and struggles are shared by others. Shari wanted to create a space without hierarchy, in which people could connect deeply, challenge negative cultural messages and liberate themselves from limiting beliefs.
In 2011 while living in New York, Shari entered Columbia University’s Narrative Medicine program, a field conceived as a way to teach empathy to doctors. Inspired by the way sharing stories makes us feel known, she began running workshops where diverse individuals could begin t0 separate themselves from what had happened to them and discover who they really were. In these safe spaces people could share their stories, revisit old assumptions and discover new possibilities for themselves, each other and the world. The Narrative Method™ is the result of this journey.
Meet Shari Foos
Shari Foos, MS, MA, LMFT | FOUNDER
Shari Foos is a Marriage and Family Therapist, adjunct professor, Narrative Medicine scholar and improvisational artist.
Shari received her MA in Clinical Psychology from Antioch University Los Angeles (1997) where she later founded the Bridge Program (1999), offering a free year-long university
Seeing the need for humanistic communities in an increasingly technological world, she founded The Narrative Method™ in 2013, providing training and programs to at-risk populations as well as teaching The Narrative Method™ at Antioch.
Prior to her career as a therapist and educator, Shari was a television and radio writer, guerilla improv artist, comedienne and co-creator/host of cutting edge salons and events, bringing together artistic and intellectual communities for entertainment and creative dialogue.
She lives in Los Angeles and New York.
BARBARA CANTER Barbara Lehrner Canter is President and CEO Emeritus of Los Angeles Team Mentoring, a pioneering site-based mentoring program serving Los Angeles Unified School District. As its first Executive Director, Barbara was responsible for guiding the growth of the agency, its sustainability, and the development of a unique mentoring program that became a national model.
DEBORAH BRIGGS Deborah H. Briggs comes to The Narrative MethodTM with a wealth of experience creating and managing businesses. With a Master’s Degree in organizational psychology from Columbia University, Deborah began her career in human resources and organizational development for large corporations such as Citigroup, Chase Manhattan Bank, and ABC-TV.
RICHARD FOOS Richard Foos has been in the entertainment business for over thirty five years starting with a small record store named Rhino Records, and eventually growing it into the well-known audio label which was sold to Time Warner in 1998. Since then, Foos and his partners started another company, Shout! Factory, with Foos as its Chief Executive Officer.
LAURIE MEADOFF Laurie Meadoff is CEO of Laurie Inc. and Team, a company designed to innovate connect and activate brands and media from around the world. With extensive experience in executive production, resourceful collaboration, and strategic planning, Laurie masterfully uses her vast network to build bridges and devise projects with significant and resounding societal influence.
“People say that a true mark of a brilliant person is her ability to make connections. If that’s true then Laurie is a modern-day Einstein.” – Geraldine Laybourne, Founder Nickelodeon
For the last two years Laurie has been the Executive Producer for The American Grandparents Association producing a 13 part PBS series called Feel Grand with Jane Seymour focusing on health and well being. She also produced a web series with Deepak Chopra called Timeless You. Presently consulting for Playing Forward, a Tech and VR company in kids' entertainment and social emotional learning and several impact investing funds, Laurie Inc. and Team makes vital connection for businesses and community engagement strategies. She is currently Emmy nominated for her role as Executive Producer on the groundbreaking series The World Cup of Hip Hop: Take Back the Mic. Laurie served as CEO of Cancer Schmancer, a groundbreaking women’s Health Advocacy organization founded by actress Fran Drescher. Laurie’s innovative work on behalf of women included the creation of Trash Cancer home parties produced by Humana focused on prevention, which reached over 20,000 people. Laurie also worked with her team to create Fran Vans, which screened women in need in both NYC and LA. Laurie consulted for The Goldie Hawn Foundation with strategic planning for the launch of their social emotional learning program, MindUP. There, Laurie assembled the organization’s board, designed the marketing strategy, and produced a major fundraiser in New York City that resulted in palpable success for the Foundation. As CEO of Chat Ventures, she executive produced programming for Nickelodeon, Disney Channel, ABC, HBO Family, MTV and VH1 and a host of international broadcasters. In addition to overseeing creative and strategic vision for the company, Laurie then formulated Chat the Planet, a global dialogue initiative committed to using media and online dialogue tools as a means of breaking down barriers reaching 350 million homes worldwide. As a part of this endeavor, Laurie co-created and executive produced the Webby award-winning series, Hometown Baghdad, which reached three million web viewers in the first week and, aired on The Sundance Channel and National Geographic International in long form .With experience filming in South Africa, Israel, Iraq, Iran, Australia, and Jordan, Laurie’s ability to imaginatively and insightfully capture a diverse range of subjects is exemplified. Laurie has spoken global and was a part of Cultural Diplomacy panels’ for the Brookings Institute in Doha for three years along with speaking in engagements in Hong Kong and India.
ROBERT SHERMAN Robert F Sherman Ph.D. works as a consultant to foundations and nonprofits in areas of education reform, youth development and leadership, and civic engagement. His particular interest is in bringing isolated yet related perspectives and favored strategies into productive alignment for greater impact.
info@TheNarrativeMethod.org | 424.832.7709 | 2038 Armacost Avenue Los Angeles, CA 90025