leaders don't lead

 then: what do they do?

Leaders enlist other people to become greater versions of themselves. 

How?  By paying close attention to themselves and to their people.

Our work, grounded in decades of training as educators, engages leaders as whole people: to be more honest, collaborative, and efficient.


We equip teams to have difficult conversations, safely.  


*we lead team building workshops, professional development, & leadership trainings that your people

actually want to attend.

we help you change yourselves.


Start here:

great leaders think like great teachers.

We come to your team and engage  in transformative culture change. We help you talk about race, gender, power, status, etc. The hard stuff.

Imagine how coaching from your favorite teachers could impact your organization or business. That's us.

*LDL is a 



 run by teachers



 we do

Audiovisual Conference

Keynotes & Talks

Have you ever attended a talk that changed how you see yourself or those you work with? That made you feel something real?


Our talks invite your teams to rethink and reimagine the work they are doing. Your people need inspiration. We help them find and use it.

Keynote Speeches
Pottery Workshop


Our energizing and entertaining workshops are design to build (or rebuild) connective tissue in your organization. 

Sometimes people call this work "Professional Development."

We call it "Human Development."

Empty Road

Deeper Work

Who trains the people in charge? To push themselves to the next level of personal and systemic growth? 

Leaders grow like everyone else- but the job can be solitary. Lonely. Our coaching engages people to  develop their leadership style while respecting their authentic selves.

Click to contact us


 we are

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James worked in NYC public schools for 20 years as an educator before joining the Seattle-based Arts Corps as their Executive Director. Originally from Chicago, James has worked internationally as an artist and educator, and has been featured in Complex Magazine, Seattle Times, KOMO, NPR, CBS, NBC, and the US Department of Education. He sits on the board of the Seattle Arts Commission, Artist Trust, and the SXSW EDU Advisory Board. A former professor at NYU, James speaks all over the world about the intersection of arts, education, public health, and equity. James gave a celebrated TED Talk on hip hop pedagogy in November 2019, and is writing a sequel to the nationally recognized book, Fresh Ed: A Guide to Culturally Responsive Pedagogy.

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An international speaker, author, artist, and entrepreneur, Mike has been a public high school English teacher and theatre director for 20 years. He serves as co-host of the NYEdTech Meetup (the nation's largest) and sits on the SXSW EDU Advisory Board. Mike is the co-author of Otherful: How To Change the World (and Your School) Through Others, an earnest and irreverent book about the power of great superintendents, principals, and other school leaders. Interested in courage and vulnerability, he’s run the NYC Marathon, gone hang-gliding in Brazil and bungee jumping in New Zealand, and has climbed  Mt. Kilimanjaro.

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*what they say

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"An amazing session on leadership"
- Catalina H.
"Among the best self reflective presentations I've ever seen or participated in" 
- Mark L.
"One of the best and interactive workshops I've ever been to"
- John R.
"'Engaging, relevant, inspiring"
- Korina D.


Some of our individual & team collaborations include work with...
Gates Foundation
richland sd 2
edtechx europe
nyc doe
seattle public schools
city college ny
DA Leadership
NYEdTech Meetup