Ecology of Leadership

Reconnect with your heart and the natural world, become a more grounded and effective leader, and transform your "inner ecology" to cultivate positive changes in your life and community.

The Ecology of Leadership

A transformational pathway to thrive and serve in a changing world

Upcoming Programs


The Ecology of Leadership

Special Spring Program

Life in Full Bloom - A five-day Ecology of Leadership Retreat  See information below or click HERE

For detailed program information on The Ecology of Leadership, including our curriculum, our facilitation team bios, our commitment to social justice & inclusion, and more photos and video, please visit our new website at:

We live in a time of tremendous global change. And, many of us are feeling significant shifts in our personal lives and the communities in which we live and work. As unsustainable eco-social paradigms and systems collapse, we are called to seed and cultivate new visions for our future.

But how do we do that effectively?

Imagine sitting in a powerful circle of fellow change-makers, speaking your truth and remembering your nature...reconnecting with the living world, your passions and service path, and a feeling of village...cultivating a set of practices to nurture your emerging visions...moving beyond calcified constructs, beliefs, and patterns of the past and into a new era of healing, creativity, peace, joy, wholeness, reverence, love, and collaborative service...for yourself, for your community, and for a thriving planet. 


Since 2006, Ecology of Leadership (EOL) programs have served hundreds of non-profit leaders, community activists, eco-social entrepreneurs, and other conscious change-makers in deepening their paths of service by manifesting their gifts, visions, and passions in their lives, their organizations, their communities, and the world.

Through experiential, nature and community-based leadership development practices, the Ecology of Leadership program blends inquiry and skill development, self-awareness, and deepened nature connection with principles of systems thinking and permaculture. With the support of a powerful and dynamic circle, you will explore leadership from the inside out, envisioning and stepping into the possibilities you hold for your life and your service path.

The process of cultivating our leadership capacity is an adventure, full of opportunity, challenge and possibility. The Ecology of Leadership gives you the tools to navigate this adventure and bring your leadership forward in the world, supported by a powerful alliance with the natural world and a community of other leaders.

Ecology of Leadership programs are offered in a variety of formats, including evening workshops, introductions, intensives and our flagship core immersion six-month series.


You will come out of EOL with a unique "Leadership Tool Bag": a collection of concrete skills, habits, mindsets and approaches to improve your well-being and effectiveness as a leader. Topics include visioning, effective communication, project development and stewardship, the ability to create and honor commitments, effective use of time and energy, and coaching skills.  We also cover often-neglected aspects of inner leadership, such as cultivating gratitude, balance, ‘inner resilience’, and practices to root and ground our leadership in the heart, in nature, and in collaboration with a community of other leaders.

For many, ecological leadership becomes a new way of thinking and being. Through EOL, you will experience what is naturally yours – an intimate relationship with the natural world. You will learn to source your leadership from this connection and stay attuned to the patterns in your own life, creating a new level of effectiveness and awareness in your leadership.

On your leadership development journey, you will be supported to:

  • Discover your true gifts, passions and the visions you hold for your work in the world, as well as other important aspects of your life
  • Develop new skills and behaviors that are aligned with this vision
  • Create a way of living and leading that moves you toward your dreams for yourself and the world
  • Explore your patterns of belief, behavior and thought and determine which ones serve and which can be released and ‘composted’
  • Receive structured coaching and support from peers and facilitators between workshops
  • Adopt stress-reducing routines that connect you with nature
  • Take on practice assignments that will help cultivate your leadership skills and integrate the skills, mindset, and routines of the course into your daily life
  • Nurture a regional leadership circle that will continue to serve and support you on your leadership journey after the formal component of the program ends


As EOL unfolds, you will learn to integrate nature awareness, ‘inner gardening’, and leadership skills into your daily life and service path. You will begin to experience leadership as a dynamic process that translates your awareness and insights into effective action toward your goals and making a difference in the world.

Many EOL alumni have taken remarkable strides toward living into their vision.

Read what they have to say about their experience

As part of their journey, each leader is invited to identify a project through which to actualize the tools of the program. Here are just a few accomplishments of previous EOL graduates:

  • Starting an organic farm
  • Launching new social change organizations
  • Helping African women have access to education and employment by learning to ride bicycles
  • Taking a long-envisioned walk-about around the world
  • Overcoming the belief that having a family and doing powerful social change work are mutually exclusive
  • Leading efforts for Berkeley to become a Fair-Trade Town
  • Providing medical relief work in conflict and disaster areas
  • Overcoming long-standing fears of public speaking
  • Writing a book

Your project may also focus on more personal or “inner” forms of transformation.  Growth is the work of a lifetime and each person's path is different. Your transformation and project will reflect your own aspirations and callings.


Participants in our programs at Commonweal Garden are asked to bring camping gear and stay overnight during consecutive meeting dates. Please note that each Ecology of Leadership weekend starts at 9am the first day (see dates under each program offering) and ends at 5pm on the last day. Participants are asked to stay on site at Commonweal Garden for the entire duration, as we have late evening and early morning programming.  

We are happy to support anyone who has questions or concerns around camping logistics. Our What To Know page has information on things you will need to know for your visit to Commonweal Garden, including directions, transportation options, site accommodations and what to bring. Please read through this information, which will answer many of your questions.  When you register for one of our programs, you will also receive a detailed email with further logistics information.  If you have any further questions in the meantime, please contact us.





Special Spring Program

Life in Full Bloom - A five-day Ecology of Leadership Retreat

And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.” -Anais Nin

Experience the core curriculum of the Ecology of Leadership in a special five-day residential program.

If you are seeking a supportive, safe, and regenerative space to connect with your nature and purpose, to take significant steps forward in your life, and to cultivate your leadership through deep remembrance and connection with the natural world, this journey is for you.

This program will be offered May 24-28, 2018 at Commonweal Garden in Bolinas, California.


THE POWER OF SPRING Life in Full Bloom - A five-day Ecology of Leadership Retreat

Spring is a season when fresh energies awaken and new growth unfurls. In spring, we see patterns of regeneration and renewal outside in the natural world, and also we feel the same forces rising inside us. They are an invitation to expand our notions of what is possible and grow into our most authentic selves. Spring is the perfect time to say “yes!” to this invitation. Join us for an immersive, five-day experience of connecting to deeper purpose, participating in a powerful village of kindred souls, and tapping into spring’s essential vitality as a catalyst to bring forth new landscapes of leadership in every aspect of your life.​​



The EOL Spring Retreat creates a unique framework of support for you to show up in all your layers and integrate different “compartments” of your life. The course combines a permaculture-inspired philosophy, practical tools and skill building, and experiences of radical co-creation that ignite connection, insight, and transformation. This unique curriculum builds sustainable change from the inside out, and gives you the opportunity to bring dynamic growth and self-empowered leadership not only to your work in the world, but also to your health and personal well-being, your relationships, your home and family, and your community. With new tools and practices — and backed by a strong community of peers — you will bring these together to connect to a comprehensive vision for your life, and receive the support to steward this vision. Inspired by permaculture principles such as nature observation/connection, intentionality and life-design, valuing diversity, and composting what no longer serves in order to create fertile soil for new growth, the EOL faculty and curriculum are a new paradigm for outer and inner wellness, and an opportunity for life-changing shifts to occur.



We will dance together between the inner and outer realms, exploring the roots and soil that inform who we are being, encountering what is in the way of our growth, and releasing old beliefs, patterns, or past experiences so that we may move into a new space where we can supercharge our visions for what we want to create in the world. Over the arc of the week, each individual will go on their own journey both of healing and "inner permaculture," while moving towards the outer manifestation of their dreams and life purpose.



The Spring Retreat takes place at the beautiful, ocean-side permaculture design site of Commonweal Garden. During our time together, we’ll camp in the garden’s meadow, awaken to birdsong, and begin the day with gratitude and collective intentions. As we explore new content and move through various configurations of small and large group learning, we’ll share an experience of village life and together explore deep connection with the natural world. Bolinas in May is in full bloom and bursting with new life. There will be ample time to attune ourselves to the rhythms of the earth through gentle awareness practices and time in nature. After each full day, we’ll gather around the fire. Delicious, locally sourced, organic meals will be provided.

Join us to:

- Reconnect with your nature, source, and purpose

- Enliven all areas of your life and leadership, and

- Take powerful steps into the life ​your heart is calling you towards.




“The Ecology of Leadership is opening my heart, blowing my mind, and providing such a sweet connection to wonderful people. If you are looking for an experience to create the life you dream of, support your vision, cultivate good habits, and have a good time, this is it.”



“I was hesitant to spend money on something that didn't 'certify' me to do something else in work.  But the pull from my heart told me to do this anyway, and it has been by far the most important and most valuable investment of my life.  Taking the time to just sit for days at a time surrounded by an entire village of support is unlike anything I've ever experienced and I was able to do the work that needed to be done to catapult myself into a world of possibilities that I could never have imagined on my own.” (EOL Alum)


5 Instruction days

Catered meals

Small group coaching & support

Immersion experience on the land at a model permaculture site

Comprehensive inner and outer leadership curriculum

Invaluable experience of deep connection

Radical support through contact with the land and village

Optional follow-up support is available:

One-on-One Coaching

May 24-28, 2018 at Commonweal Garden in Bolinas, California.

Please note that each weekend starts at 9am on Thursday and ends at 5pm on Monday, inclusive. Participants are asked to stay on site at Commonweal Garden for the entire duration, as we have late evening and early morning programming.


To apply for the Fall Core Immersion, please follow this LINK

Full Price: $1795

Early Bird by June 1st: $1495

Reviewers (For EOL Core Immersion alumni only): $995

Applicable to: As part of our commitment to social justice and equity, we have partial scholarships available for people of color who are also in need of financial assistance.  If you qualify for this, please contact us before proceeding to receive a discount code for your registration. 

REFUND POLICY: If your application is not accepted, the full application fee will be refunded. Once accepted, $500 of the registration fee becomes a non-refundable deposit. Cancellations up to April 24, 2018 (14 days before the program starts) will be refunded, less the $500 non-refundable deposit.

On and after April 24, 2018, no refunds are given. No exceptions will be made.


The Ecology of Leadership team is committed to inclusivity, diversity and social justice. We are committed to creating a courageous, authentic space that welcomes a diverse group of participants, across lines of race, class, gender, sexual orientation and socio-economic status.  

In alignment with this commitment, we have a social justice scholarship available for people of color who are also experiencing financial challenges.  If you feel this applies to you, here is a 25% discount available.  Please contact us to receive a discount code for your registration.

We also encourage participants to reach out to their communities for financial support.  Past participants have had great success with creating community-sourced fundraising campaigns and also with finding private donors to support their participation.

If you would like to discuss any of this further, please contact us.


For more detailed information on the Life in Full Bloom - A Five-day Ecology of Leadership Retreat click HERE



Alumni of our Ecology of Leadership courses may return to our Core Immersion program in one of three capacities - reviewing, the Advanced Track (EOL in Action), and by joining our facilitation team.  

We also offer specialized programming for alumni, such as our Mojave Desert immersion program, and weekend programs such as the EOL women's retreat. For information on the Mojave Desert program click HERE.

Please visit the Ecology of Leadership website for detailed descriptions of these options.


  • "I have become a stronger and more empathetic leader. This is a deeply enriching program and sets a foundation for you to see yourself fully and what you can achieve."