About The Fearless Heart

The Fearless Heart is a project of Bay Area Nonviolent Communication. Like many projects, it started small when, in 2010, Miki Kashtan finally got the nerve to start her own blog. The response was so positive, and the pleasure of putting out her ideas and experiences so meaningful, that writing emerged as a core aspect of Miki’s work. As her visibility and reach grew over time, a team of people coalesced in support of the vision that she is holding for what’s possible for individuals and for the world.

The Fearless Heart is where Miki blogs. It acts as the publisher for her books and upcoming multimedia self-study guide to Nonviolent Communication. The Fearless Heart team supports trainings around the world conducted by Miki, and organizational services offered by Miki and her colleagues in BayNVC. We are proud to focus on bringing collaboration and hope to organizations and underserved communities around the world. We invite you to look around this site and see what draws your attention. We believe there is something here for anyone, from CEO to social activist.

Below you will find information about all our team members. We love working together because we believe in what we do and we practice living now as if the world of our dreams is already in place.

The Fearless Heart Team

mikiMiki Kashtan is a co-founder of Bay Area Nonviolent Communication. She is inspired by the role of visionary leadership in shaping a livable future, and works toward that vision by sharing the principles and practices of Nonviolent Communication through mediation, meeting facilitation, consulting, and training for organizations and for committed individuals. She holds a Ph.D. in Sociology from UC Berkeley and her articles have appeared in Tikkun magazine, Waging Nonviolence, Shareable, and elsewhere. The Fearless Heart is crossposted to Tikkun Daily and Psychology Today.

Miki’s first three books will be published in 2014:

  • Spinning Threads of Radical Aliveness: Transcending the Legacy of Separation in Our Individual Lives, is scheduled to be published on April 4, 2014 and its companion:
  • Reweaving Our Human Fabric: Working together to Create a Nonviolent Future, is scheduled to be out later in the year. And in between we will see:
  • The Little Book of Courageous Living, a collection of Miki’s quotes, is scheduled to be published on May 16.

For a full list of her publications, click here.

Whether in her teaching or when consulting for organizations, Miki focuses on applying core principles in practical and manageable ways. In particular, she draws deep inspiration from the work of Gandhi and Martin Luther King, and links Nonviolent Communication directly to the principles of nonviolence. You can gain deeper appreciation of the links she sees between Nonviolent Communication and the legacy of Gandhi by reading her article Gandhian Principles for Everyday Living.

Miki’s commitment is to apply the principles she has distilled over the years in a manner that is adapted to the context, culture, and needs of the people or organizations with whom she works. This allows her to be equally accessible to activists in the Middle East working to bring peace between Palestinians and Israelis and to executives in the business world who aim to manage complex challenges and many people. For some projects that she is currently involved in, click here.

Miki has worked with organizations around the US, ranging from small non-profits to large corporations. She often works as a consultant, supporting greater collaboration, encouraging systemic alignment with values, providing meeting facilitation, and offering leadership coaching. She has also worked as a trainer, focusing on collaboration, facilitation, difficult conversations, feedback giving, leadership development, and related topics. She is particularly drawn to working with Triple Bottom Line companies as well as those who seek to align an organization’s practices, policies, procedures, and systems with the organization’s stated values.

Miki has taught NVC on five continents since 1996. She specializes in using a “natural language” approach which makes the work more easily accessible and shareable. Currently, she focuses her work with individuals on empowerment and leadership, encouraging people to reclaim their full humanity as well as that of others in their lives and beyond, and to take on the commitment to step into a powerful and nonviolent path of life, with the intention to aim for solutions that work for everyone, including themselves. She also works with people who lead groups in providing facilitation skills as well as a methodology for sharing NVC with others. You can find out more about her current classes and retreats here.

Miki started her live program The Conflict Hotline as a radio program on KPFA, aired occasionally between 2004 and 2006. In 2009 the program shifted form and became a monthly live call-in TV show on the Berkeley Community Media channel BETV. This program is now on hold until adequate funding exists to support the previously all-volunteer team. All episodes of the TV program can be viewed on YouTube. For an annotated list of all the episodes, go here.

“NVC has had the greatest impact on my daily life of anything I’ve studied or practiced, and Miki Kashtan is the most powerful teacher of NVC I’’ve encountered. Her classes, coaching, and brilliant role playing have immediately benefitted my relations with family, friends, and business colleagues. She can take what feels like an insoluble conflict and turn it into an opportunity for closer connection and growth. I only wish I’d learned the principles and techniques of NVC when I was in kindergarten.” —– Sara Davidson, author of The December Project, Leap! and Loose Change

 

adrianaAdriana Skura is the Operations Coordinator and has been with The Fearless Heart team since September 2012. She holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Photography and Art History from the Savannah College of Art and Design. She has lived many lives: as a Photo Researcher, Photographer, Office Manager and Project Manager. In her spare time she volunteers at the Charlotte Maxwell Complementary Clinic providing Reiki and Massage Therapy sessions to low income women with cancer. Her mission in life is to support fierce, daring and unconventional leaders who aspire to make a difference in the world.

 

daveDavid Belden, Editor and Publisher for the Fearless Heart, works part-time primarily as an editor for Miki’s writings and publisher of her books. He also teaches at California Institute for Integral Studies, and pursues a passion for restorative justice as a facilitator of Victim Offender Education Groups in San Quentin prison and Chowchilla women’s prison, with the Insight Prison Project. He has been a novelist, columnist, carpenter, business writer, and managing editor of Tikkun magazine. He has a doctorate in the sociology of religion from Oxford University.

 

Nancy Kahn is BayNVC’s Director of Organizational Services, a collaborative facilitator and board member with BayNVC. She brings a rich combination of over twelve years of training in NVC; along with her experience in  nonprofit management, diversity management,  leadership, social justice,  social work, and youth empowerment  to her role and  private consulting practice.  Nancy has held leadership roles as  co-trainer for the BayNVC Leadership Program and coordinator of the BayNVC Diversity Project, launched in 2000.  She is the founder and former Executive Director of Mission Dignity, a youth-led Peer Education and College Resource Center in SF’s Mission District and  former board chair of Honoring Emancipated Youth (HEY), previously known as the SF Foster Care Initiative.

 

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