Our Mission

The Narrative Method helps diverse groups and individuals increase empathy, connect deeply, and discover new possibilities for themselves, others and the world.

Our Approach

The Narrative Method offers award-winning, experiential programs and workshops that use stories to increase compassion, empathy, connect deeply and develop the skills to create more meaningful relationships. Workshops, classes, facilitator trainings and salons are designed for diverse populations including, universities, K-12 teachers,  veterans, youth, homeless individuals and social service agencies that serve underserved populations. 

Compelling ideas, videos, relational activities, creative writing and thought-provoking conversations inspire participants to challenge harmful messages from the media and culture. Participants are empowered to broaden their perspectives and reclaim their stories.

 

In 2018 TNM launched DIY Human with a studio in Santa Monica for live events, classes and trainings. The DIY Human Cards are being used by universities and K-12 schools nationally so that anyone can facilitate a meaningful group.

Our Board

 
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Shari Foos,
Founder

Shari Foos is a Marriage and Family Therapist, adjunct professor, Narrative Medicine scholar and improvisational artist. Shari received a MS in Narrative Medicine from Columbia University and a MA in Clinical Psychology from Antioch University Los Angeles where she founded the Bridge Program, an accredited, yearlong university humanities program, provided at no cost for adults without access to higher education.

 

Seeing the need for humanistic communities in an increasingly technological world, Shari founded The Narrative Method™ in 2013, providing programs and facilitator training for at-risk populations. In addition, she teaches The Narrative Method™ at Antioch University. In 2018, The Narrative Method launched DIY Human, based on the idea that you don't need a license to use your humanity. DIYH invites the public to participate in salons, special events and leadership trainings.

 

Shari was formerly a television and radio writer, guerilla improv artist, and creator/host of cutting edge salons and events, bringing together artistic and intellectual communities for entertainment and creative dialogue. Shari serves on the boards of Coalition for Engaged Education and City Kids Foundation and is a co-founder of IKAR LA.

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Deborah Briggs

Deborah H. Briggs comes to The Narrative Method 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.

 

Deborah brought Gymboree, the nation’s first play learning program to New York as the owner/manager of four locations. Her focus on the evolving needs of the community continued with her next venture; she opened three Huntington Learning Centers in New York City. After moving to Boca Raton from New York City in 2005, Deborah began volunteering her services at Florida’s #1 ranked SCORE chapter where she counseled small business owners, helping them with their startup endeavors. 

 

Deborah also served as president of the (not for profit) Boca Raton Theatre Guild for four years.  Based on her passion for dance and its transformational power, she also created the 501(c) 3 nonprofit program “Dancing Classrooms Southeast Florida”. This program, which still operates, encourages emotional growth while nurturing the mind, the body, and the soul.

 

Deborah joined Shari Foos to help develop and “roll out” The Narrative Method” as 1) she is blown away by the power of this project to change lives; and 2) she is Shari’s best friend since kindergarten.

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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.
 

Until March 2013 he served as Director, Initiative for Social and Emotional Learning at the NoVo Foundation. The Social and Emotional Learning Initiative seeks to advance educational experiences and practices that prepare children for personal and academic success—and help them develop the valuable social and emotional skills they need to become better students, create positive relationships and handle challenging situations they may face in school and life.

 

He founded and directed the national Effective Citizenry program at the Surdna Foundation in New York City, where he served for 15 years. The program supported organizations that help young people participate meaningfully in shaping civic and community life. Anchored in social and emotional learning at its core, the Effective Citizenry program funded youth organizing, youth media, policy development, service-learning, volunteering and a range of youth development strategies which promote individual growth and youth-led social change. 

 

Robert  holds a Ph.D. in clinical psychology from the Institute of Advanced Psychological Studies at Adelphi University, and a BA from Haverford College.

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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.
 

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.  She was  nominated for an EMMY 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.
 

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 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.

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Mark Lesser

Mark Lesser is a recently retired apparel manufacturer. He and his wife owned and operated a fashion business for 35 years. The company designed, manufactured and sold multiple brands of women’s sportswear and dresses to specialty stores, department stores, on- line retailers, and catalogs, as well as operating their own e-commerce site. He and his wife started their business out of their home and grew it to be a successful national brand in the women’s apparel industry, navigating through all the ups and downs that any business goes through from start up to maturity.

A true entrepreneur who started from scratch, Mark enjoys helping people build a business and reach for their dreams. He served for many years on the board of the California Fashion Association, the recognized trade association of the west coast apparel industry. He has experience in every aspect of running a small to medium size business, including  business strategy, finance, management, inventory control, sales & marketing, employee relations, merchandising, advertising, import/ export, and start-ups.

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Richard Foos

Richard Foos has been in the entertainment business for over forty-five years starting with a small record store named Rhino Records, and eventually growing it into the well-known audio label with well over one hundred million dollars in annual revenue.  Rhino was sold in 1998 to Time Warner after which Foos and his partners started Shout! Factory, with Richard as its Chief Executive Officer. Now in its 15th year, Shout! is a preeminent independent home video company, producing and distributing classic and new television and films.

 

Foos has always merged his social values with business and has installed a strong sense of purpose and giving back in all of his ventures. While still in college, he founded the Free Store (1969).  He serves as Chairman Emeritus for Little Kids Rock and sits on many boards, including The Nation Institute, Youth Policy Institute, College Match, the Grammy Music Education Coalition, and other non-profits that make a strong commitment to social progress. He has won numerous awards for his philanthropy and good works. Richard is a 1967 graduate of Beverly Hills High School and a 1971 graduate of California State Northridge.

   Bob Johnson

Bob (“BJ”) is a Los Angeles based entertainment attorney, producer, and civic activist. In addition to practicing law, he is a Peabody Award-winning film producer with Spike Lee, and a former senior music executive for Atlantic Records. Bob is co-founder and chair of the board of directors of LA Works - Los Angeles’ largest volunteer agency. His law practice includes representation of prominent athletes and artists in film, music, and art. He is a graduate of Occidental College, UCLA Anderson School of Management and UCLA School of Law respectively.

 

Bob’s producer credits include: “A Huey P. Newton Story” and “Rodney King” for Starz and Netflix respectively. He has produced concerts at Carnegie Hall and the Hollywood Bowl. Previously, Bob served as chair of the board of directors of the Silverlake Conservatory of Music, and is a current or former officer of several nonprofit organizations, including: the ACLU Foundation of Southern California, Rock The Vote, and Operation USA. Bob is also a member of the Obama Scholars Advisory Board at Occidental College and in 2018 was recognized by the Center For Nonprofit Management as one of the Top 40 nonprofit visionaries in Southern California.

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THE NARRATIVE METHOD™ is an award-winning 501c3 program for diverse groups and individuals. Participants challenge kneejerk impulses to obey the culture rather than express themselves genuinely. And by broadening their lens, participants discover new possibilities for themselves, each other, and the world. Increases awareness, wonder, empathy and tolerance. 

© 2019 The Narrative Method