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Our WellSpring

Author: Spring Point Partners

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Welcome to Our WellSpring, the Spring Point Partners podcast featuring remarkable leaders who are shifting narratives in their field and in the world.

In Season 1, we’ll be exploring leadership origin stories that impact what we do and how we do it. We’ll shed light on the source of something beautiful - human-centered leadership. This season we will hear from emerging and established voices in social impact who will speak candidly about their work, their leadership lens, and what they are learning and unlearning about themselves. Our highest aspiration? To share stories with you that inspire and seed the ground for community-driven impact and narrative change.
7 Episodes
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In this special bonus episode, our host, Uva Coles, speaks to YouthBuild student leaders Adrianna Avila and Mirahcle Sanders. Adrianna and Mirahcle are bonded by a time-tested friendship and by navigating similarly challenging experiences. Both emerging leaders in their own right, the duo  found the support system, agency, and community they were seeking at YouthBuild Philadelphia. They talk about their early learnings,  the importance of mentorship, and their community-rooted and ever-evolving career aspirations.Takeaways:Having the same expectations for everyone doesn’t workWe have to heal ourselves and our homes in order to begin to heal our communitiesShowing up for ourselves is critically importantMentorship, no matter one’s role or title,  is a strong signal to young people that the adults in their schools, communities, and lives are all invested and careResources:Philly Youth Make A Change (nonprofit organization)Jhene Aiko (music) Mindfulness Apps - Chill – Mindfulness Reminders, Headspace, Calm (app)YouthBuild Philly – youthbuild (YouthBuild Philadelphia’s site)How to connect with us Spring Point Partners 
In this episode, Le’Yondo Dunn, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) at YouthBuild Philadelphia Charter School, joins our host Uva Coles.  In a candid conversation, Dunn and Uva speak out about the importance of representation, share lived experiences, talk about mental health, and emphasize how we can’t leave the future of our young people in the hands of luck. Guest/s Le’Yondo Dunn is the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) at YouthBuild Philadelphia Charter School. His passion for working in education stemmed from his own experiences, which mirror many students attending YouthBuild. He firmly believes that all students should have access to a high-quality education and educators who believe endlessly in their potential regardless of their zip codes.His excitement about leading YouthBuild Philadelphia Charter School arises from its inspiring mission and the opportunities it provides young adults. The school's commitment to fostering an environment of love, support, and respect for the whole person deeply resonates with him. By empowering students with vital skills and connecting them to opportunities, YouthBuild equips them to graduate high school successfully and transition to college and career paths as critically conscious leaders devoted to positive change for themselves and their communities.Before assuming the role of CEO at YouthBuild, Le’Yondo made significant contributions to the field of education during his time as the principal at Simon Gratz High School in North Philadelphia. There, he spearheaded an impactful anti-gun violence initiative, leading to its subsequent adoption by the entire Mastery Charter system, implemented across all secondary schools. For the first time since 2012, Le’Yondo successfully united Gratz as a comprehensive 9-12 high school under one leadership team, bringing improved educational opportunities. He also launched Career and Technical Education programming to ensure students have multiple pathway options when transitioning to their postsecondary paths. Prior, he worked as a school administrator in several other large, high-performing charter management organizations. Le’Yondo's dedication to education advocacy began in Southeast Louisiana, his home state, where he first recognized the power of education to create positive change. He also played a crucial role in supporting the founding of one of the first charter schools in the state of Washington, where he witnessed the transformative potential of alternative education models. Mr. Dunn attended the University of New Orleans and St. Joseph’s University. Le’Yondo resides in Germantown with his wife, who is also an educator, and son.Our WellSpring HostUva Coles, Chief Learning OfficerUva Coles serves as Chief Learning Officer for Spring Point Partners. As the organization’s external learning steward, Uva’s leadership ensures that equity, human-centered leadership, and narrative change are woven through every aspect of SPP’s partner-based learning deliveries. A writer, speaker, inclusive organizational strategist, and lifelong learner, Uva believes every room we step into is a classroom. Sometimes we are teachers; sometimes we are students. Our best learning happens, she believes, when we can be both.Key Takeaways Education is a tool to liberate young people. Representation matters. We can’t leave things to a matter of luck - luck is not equitable and must be taken out of the equation.We have to slow down, practice understanding and empathy  and be willing to both learn and push our thinking and views. As leaders, it’s not our role to only make change. We must also sustain change. Resource ListSelf-Care for Black Men: 100 Ways to Heal and Liberate by Jor-El Caraballo (Book)The Invisible Ache: Black Men Identifying Their Pain and Reclaiming Their Power by Courtney B. Vance and Robin L. Smith (Book)Leslie F*cking Jones by Leslie Jones (Book)I Love Neo-Soul (Spotify Playlist) YouthBuild Philly – youthbuild How to connect with us Spring Point Partners 
In this episode, our host, Uva Coles, speaks with Bob Nardo, founding executive director of Libertas School of Memphis, the first Montessori neighborhood turnaround and charter school in Tennessee, and Arete Memphis Public Montessori Residency, the nation’s first dual-licensure urban teacher residency. Bob talks about his path to becoming an educator and the privilege of being part of a new community. Uva and Bob also dig into what it takes to build trust as a foundation for real community building. Guest Bob Nardo is founding executive director of Libertas School of Memphis, the first Montessori neighborhood turnaround and charter school in Tennessee, and Arete Memphis Public Montessori Residency, the nation’s first dual-licensure urban teacher residency. Bob previously served as COO of the Tennessee Achievement School District, of KIPP Newark, and a similar role at the Noble Network of Charter Schools in Chicago. Bob has taught band, choir, philosophy, and Latin. Bob earned a BA from American University, MA from the University of Chicago, and a postgraduate diploma in character education from the University of Birmingham (UK). Bob, his wife Sara (a homeschool educator), and their five children live on a small homestead near Memphis.Our WellSpring HostUva Coles, Chief Learning OfficerUva Coles serves as Chief Learning Officer for Spring Point Partners. As theorganization’s external learning steward, Uva’s leadership ensures that equity, human-centered leadership, and narrative change are woven through every aspect of SPP’s partner-based learning deliveries. A writer, speaker, inclusive organizational strategist, and lifelong learner, Uva believes every room we step into is a classroom. Sometimes we are teachers; sometimes we are students. Our best learning happens, she believes, when we can be both.Key Takeaways It's important to say and share the “hard” things whenever we can. Our voice is a valuable tool—as is the time we have at our disposal to use it. Both should be leveraged.Pay attention to what children are saying; their observations, feedback and ideas are about what they need and not about what adults prescribe their needs to be. By giving children meaningful work to do and freedom of movement in the environment, you eradicate willpower battles and empower them with a sense of contribution. Resource ListCulturally Responsive Curriculum (Libertas) Omni Americans by Albert Murray (Book) How to connect with us Spring Point Partners 
In this episode, Uva Coles, Our WellSpring’s host, speaks with Dr. Candace Croney, Associate Vice-Provost for Diversity, Inclusion and Belonging and Director of Purdue University’s Center for Animal Welfare Science. A highly regarded and accomplished animal welfare professional and advocate, Dr. Croney delicately balances the hypervisible with the invisible. Sharing from her personal experiences, she taps into the importance of bridging across divides, being a truth teller, and connecting not only with the animals but with the humans who care deeply about them. Much of this work, Dr. Croney reminds us, requires a deeper, non-judgmental understanding of cultural norms and contexts. Guest/s Dr. Candace Croney is the Associate Vice-Provost for Diversity, Inclusion and Belonging, Director of Purdue University’s Center for Animal Welfare Science, and professor of animal behavior and well-being in the departments of Comparative Pathobiology and Animal Sciences.  Dr. Croney earned her PhD in animal sciences from Penn State University. Before joining Purdue University, she conducted postdoctoral studies at the University of Maryland, College Park, was Assistant Director of Conservation Education at the American Zoo and Aquarium Association, and held faculty appointments in animal behavior and bioethics in the Animal Sciences Department at Oregon State University and in Preventive Medicine at The Ohio State University.Her research focuses on: developing and applying non-invasive metrics of welfare in agricultural and companion animals; understanding effects of rearing environments and management on animal behavior, health, and welfare; public perceptions of animal agriculture and welfare; bioethics-science interfaces in animal care and welfare policy, practice, and public communications. She recently translated her collaborative research on canine welfare to create a unique voluntary national certification program, TM Canine Care Certified, that sets rigorous standards for the care and welfare of dogs in breeding kennels. Her work has been featured in national and international broadcast programs by outlets such as Animal Planet, National Geographic, and the British Broadcasting Corporation.  She serves as scientific advisor on animal welfare to numerous groups, including the American Humane Association, Tyson Foods, Fairlife, and Bob Evans Farms.Our WellSpring HostUva Coles, Chief Learning OfficerUva Coles serves as Chief Learning Officer for Spring Point Partners. As theorganization’s external learning steward, Uva’s leadership ensures that equity,human-centered leadership, and narrative change are woven through every aspect of SPP’s partner-based learning deliveries. A writer, speaker, inclusive organizational strategist, and lifelong learner, Uva believes every room we step into is a classroom. Sometimes we are teachers; sometimes we are students. Our best learning happens, she believes, when we can be both.Key Takeaways Try to suspend judgment and lean into learning cultural contexts in order to arrive at optimal, animal welfare work. We must be truth tellers. We can’t do good work in ethics without being honest. Biases are part of the human condition. Understanding them and working through them is part of our responsibility. In centering for animals, don’t view people as part of the problem but rather prospective partners in sustainable problem solvingResource List Some We Eat, Some We Love, Some We Hate by  Hal Herzog (book) The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood (book) How to connect with us Spring Point Partners 
In this episode, SPP’s Chief Learning Officer Uva Coles speaks with Jessica and Joanna Berwind about their family life and upbringing (as sisters!) and their journey conceptualizing and leading the establishment of Spring Point Partners with their siblings. They tap into the importance of making mistakes and unleashing creativity. They also reflect on legacy building with their personal passion at the center, just how their father inspired them to grow and lead. Guest/s Jessica Berwind, Director, Spring Point Partners In her various roles across the multinational multi-sector Berwind Group of Companies, Jessica Berwind operates at the intersection of learning, art, and business. In 2017, she joined her siblings in conceptualizing and leading the establishment of Spring Point Partners, a growing Philadelphia-based social impact organization that invests in the transformative leaders, networks, and solutions that power community change. Through Spring Point, the Berwinds are advancing their family’s entrepreneurial legacy to center equity and achieve justice. As a director of the organization, Jessica focuses on the intersection of human-centered learning, community, and equity through ember. Jessica worked as an art dealer for almost 10 years and owned and operated a contemporary art gallery in Philadelphia. A practicing metalsmith, she has been producing gold and silver jewelry since the 1970s. She is also a proud mother. Joanna Berwind, Director, Spring Point Partners In her various roles across the multinational multi-sector Berwind Group of Companies, Joanna Berwind operates at the intersection of business, impact, social work, and youth development. She has contributed to the growth and vision of the fifth-generation family-owned investment management company, Berwind Corporation, for more than 20 years through positions in corporate development, marketing, and sales. In 2017, she joined her siblings in conceptualizing and leading the establishment of Spring Point Partners, a growing Philadelphia-based social impact organization that invests in the transformational leaders, networks, and solutions that power community change. Through Spring Point, the Berwinds are advancing their family’s entrepreneurial legacy to center equity and achieve justice. As a director of the organization, Joanna oversees strategy for Spring Point’s strengths-based youth development portfolio, The Hive, which amplifies voice, choice and opportunity for young people.Our WellSpring HostUva Coles, Chief Learning OfficerUva Coles serves as Chief Learning Officer for Spring Point Partners. As the organization’s external learning steward, Uva’s leadership ensures that equity, human-centered leadership, and narrative change are woven through every aspect of SPP’s partner-based learning deliveries. A writer, speaker, inclusive organizational strategist, and lifelong learner, Uva believes every room we step into is a classroom. Sometimes we are teachers; sometimes we are students. Our best learning happens, she believes, when we can be both.  Key Takeaways Elevator pitches don’t always work - you need to speak from possibility and from the heart. Why listening to the connection between our bodies and minds can serve as the spark to ignite change. Mistakes are not a tragedy. Mistakes are part of how you get from point A to point B. Nobody knows how to get from point A to point B unless they've already done it a thousand times.Resource List The On Being Project: Mary Oliver — Listening to the World (audio interview)In Other Words: A Memoir by Jhumpa Lahiri (book)Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge and the Teachings of Plants by Robin Wall Kimmerer (book)Yo-Yo Ma — Bach Cello Suite No. 2 in D minor Prelude (YouTube video) The Creative ACT: A Way of Being by Rick Rubin (book)How to connect with us Spring Point Partners 
Leading Leaders

Leading Leaders

2024-03-1821:49

In this episode, Uva Coles, Our WellSpring’s host and Spring Point Partners’ Chief Learning Officer, speaks to Catherine Murphy, President of Spring Point Partners. In our pursuit to uncover origin stories this season, we must begin with our own. Catherine speaks on her passion and pursuit of leadership, while not always identifying as a leader. Hear about the early seeds that Spring Point Partners planted, Catherine’s work as the “conductor” in this co-creation, and how being relentlessly hopeful will help them forge ahead in the years to come. Guest/s Catherine Murphy, President & Senior Advisor to the Berwind FamilyAs president and senior advisor to the Berwind Family, Catherine Murphy brings a commitment to service and innovative leadership acumen to Spring Point Partners. Since joining the Berwind Corporation 17 years ago and helping the owners build their family office, she has pioneered efforts to create and bolster social value through impact investments and grantmaking. Through SPP, she continues to support stakeholders while ensuring continued innovation. She is a mother of three with a passion for children, animals, and the outdoors.Our WellSpring HostUva Coles, Chief Learning OfficerUva Coles serves as Chief Learning Officer for Spring Point Partners. As the organization’s external learning steward, Uva’s leadership ensures that equity, human-centered leadership, and narrative change are woven through every aspect of SPP’s partner-based learning deliveries. A writer, speaker, inclusive organizational strategist, and lifelong learner, Uva believes every room we step into is a classroom. Sometimes we are teachers; sometimes we are students. Our best learning happens, she believes, when we can be both.  Key Takeaways The importance of humility, grace, and finding the joy in making mistakes while on the journey of becoming a leader. Trust, learning, and trying new things are values that sit at the center of the work being done at Spring Point Partners.One can get lost at sea without core values and tying every part of your work to represent those values - allows the work to stay centered. How to connect with us Spring Point Partners 
Prologue

Prologue

2024-03-1802:20

Welcome to Our WellSpring, the Spring Point Partners podcast featuring remarkable leaders who are shifting narratives in their field and in the world. In Season 1, we’ll be exploring leadership origin stories that impact what we do and how we do it. We’ll shed light on the source of something beautiful - human-centered leadership. This season we will hear from emerging and established voices in social impact who will speak candidly about their work, their leadership lens, and what they are learning and unlearning about themselves. Our highest aspiration? To share stories with you that inspire and seed the ground for community-driven impact and narrative change. 
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