Testimonials about SiOP

Angel PerezExecutive Director, Victim Reconciliation Program of Denver - VORP

“Because of my participation in SiOP, I have been able to develop my agency as a Brown woman in a position of leadership and expand the impact of my work. I've been through many 'leadership' programs but none have impacted me in the way SiOP has.”

Mattice Haynes2017 Train-the-Trainers Participant

“[SiOP is about] black women and women of color reclaiming our time, power, vision and community in a time of more overt oppression and white supremacy.”

Monica Raye SimpsonExecutive Director, Sister Song Women of Color Reproductive Justice Collective

“I came to this gathering anxious, heart-broken, and overwhelmed. Yet, I was excited for the opportunity. I arrived to a warm, safe space that helped me to finally breathe. This retreat renewed me, filled me, transformed me, healed me and prepared me to create a new life.”

Kristiana HuitronExecutive Director, Voices Unidas for Justice.

“I personally have found ways to embody my own power that feel good to me. I have brought in more money (a lot) to my organization. I have created alliances that could be game changers for my field...Seeing myself reflected in the power, the humanity, the sheer caliber of leadership in my peers in the circle has shifted everything for me.”

Shilpa JainExecutive Director, YES!

“To be with a dynamic, inspirational and REAL group of women for a weekend was a profound gift...The healing and learning (and unlearning) we did together–and that we will continue to do–will ripple out from this weekend into our lives, communities, and world.”

Omisade Burney ScottSiOP Founding Core Leader

“Every time I looked into the faces of my SiOP sisters, I heard a whisper, 'I know you sister. I am you.' What a blessing to be seen and held just as you are.”

LaLa Zannell2015 Transformative Leadership Institute

“I had the pleasure of attending an amazing retreat that changed my life! I learned that I am a beautiful and powerful black woman.”

Jenna TorresEmpowerment Workshop Series Participant and Train-the-Trainers Participant

“For the first time in my life, I feel in control of my 'now.' I came in feeling like I was living in the middle of a hurricane. Now I feel like the storm has passed. I can’t thank SiOP enough!”

Brenda Salgado

“Several years ago, I had the honor of participating in the Standing in Our Power (SiOP) Leadership retreat in Ohio...What a gift to be in-circle with such women-leaders as they call one another into their power. Thank you for creating space to remind us that we are free. I am free. You are free. ”

Tatiana KnowlesEmpowerment Workshop Series Participant

“I have never had a more rewarding and enlightening experience. I gained tools that I need to stand in my power and believe; I am enough!”

Sonya Renee Taylor Founder, The Body is Not An Apology

“I am free because SiOP gave me a community of women leaders to support me in stepping into the power of my vision for TBINAA. Its gorgeous cultivation of women of color leaders doing transformation work has been a healing balm for me.”

Nadia Bournecurrent Train-the-Trainers Participant

“Peace is loving and listening to myself— believing in my worth as intrinsic to my state-of-being, something that should never be up for debate. It isn't even up to me to question my worth! I am as worthy of life and space to thrive as all of us. SiOP is helping me find inner peace.”

Diana Marie LeeFounder and CEO, Sweet Livity.

“Standing in Our Power is a safe space where someone like me, a person with a big vision and unresolved fears, can continue their healing work not in isolation but visibly in community with others and with tangible tools.”

As part of the inaugural year of the TLC fellowship, I’m honored to participate in envisioning subsequent years and witness the emergent thought going forward. I have focused on my own personal growth through self-examination and relationship deepening. The facilitation of the fellowship stands out not only my memory, but is exemplary among others. And as such, I have accepted opportunity after opportunity to improve my ability to learn deeper from others. The curriculum is flexible and responsive and our group. We are gracefully facilitated through the nuances of our diverse perspectives and complex decisions.
I feel a renewed commitment to creating the type of change that serves our many communities and creates a space that I can feel both proud and inspired. Our success in the midst of such a challenging time cannot go unnoticed. The integrity of the process that led us here is the result of hard work and the ability to graciously admit set backs and creatively problem solve to achieve the end goals. We found that only together, with each of us contributing our invaluable skills, could we triumph. Together we brought many people and communities together to work toward a vision, but a vision realized.

Jordan GarciaCo-Executive Director, American Friends Service Committee

I was invited to participate in the first Standing in Our Power Transformational Retreat. I went to the retreat not knowing what to expect, knowing only that I needed a space to process, heal, and release all that was weighing me down. I was at a major crossroad in my academic and professional life. What I experienced was a sacred space, a safe space, designed to challenge me to reflect, and release. I was supported by the women in that group to share in a vision where my gifts, talents, time, and passion shaped a New World— one more equitable for women of color – for our families and their communities. I emerged from that gathering with a whole new set of tools and practices. I became a part of the vast network of women who shared in a commitment to heal in order to lead and create change.

Leslie Grant-Spann

For nearly 20 years, I have engaged in movement building work. As a queer leader of color, I can honestly say the Transformative Leadership for Change fellowship in Colorado (facilitated by SiOP) is the first space where I’ve experienced collective healing and liberation. I’ve been pushed to exercise vulnerability and share my story as a path towards deepening trust and building solidarity with leaders of colors in my community. While many other executive leadership development programs focus on skills, SiOP understands that the challenges facing leaders of color are complex and require a commitment to healing from internalized oppression to build the power we need to win!

Crystal Middlestadt Executive Director, Chinook Fund

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