The real answer?
DEI training is rooted in what I call the American Domination Society era.
You see, in this nation's saga, two societal structures contend - Partnership and Domination systems. This dichotomy births DEI training, racism, misogyny, and a history marred by conquest.
American Domination Society's genesis? Colonialism. Think of Columbus, asserting dominance over indigenous lands once governed by a Partnership society model, while implanting systemic misogyny and Judeo-Christian religion. Even land ownership itself is a testament to this conquest.
Here's the kicker — our current society is unnatural. It's a far cry from communal living and neighborly respect that exist when we center Partnership, where we strive to stop regular harms like homelessness and 40-hour workweeks are alien concepts.
While a full return to a Partnership Society might be a distant dream, a hybrid future is within grasp. We can meld the best of both worlds, forging a future that challenges the current norms.
A future where DEI training is no longer a band-aid solution but an earnest component of partnership and true collaboration.
As leaders, we have the opportunity to do more than shift the narrative; we must flip the script by recreating the world we live in with our communities. In this radical journey, my team and I have flipped traditional DEI training on its head and elevated employee retention by a staggering 5-15% in less than 24 months.
Trusted by brands like Denny's, Girls Inc, Portland Metro STEM Partnership, Green Leaf Guild, Oregon Department of Education, & Oregon State University.
If you're still here, you're not just seeking change; you're demanding it. Let's reshape the narrative—let's shift from domination to true belonging in your organization.
Bold enough to build the future alongside us?
"Because I want to live in a society where DEI trainings are no longer a bandaid solution but an earnest component of partnership and true collaboration."
-Yeruwelle de Rouen, MS, PMP, IDI
So why do I REALLY do this heart work?
My intergenerational, visible, and personal identity are the foundation of how I understand the bridges between people and mindsets. Personal narrative and my desire to understand why the world works the way it does set a course for accumulating my expertise in counseling psychology, philosophy, rhetoric and law, critical race theory, and restorative organizational development.
My experience and expertise begin with my unique narrative growing up in a multi-ethnic, American home, raised in the enchanting desert of New Mexico, the oldest of seven children, homeschooled through my K-12 education. I was raised to ask questions, value education, and to incorporate servant-leadership into my regular life. As a multi-ethnic, light skinned, BIPOC, cis-woman I am ever aware of the power dynamics that are in each space and how the needs of people are the same no matter the many identities they hold.
Throughout my life, my identity has made me keenly aware of how my position in the world and how this affects all aspects of individual personal liberty - from which rights I have over my own body, to how much money I can make on average in the workplace. These many inconsistencies of personal power, dependent on one’s perceived identity, led me to seek education and continuous learning about design thinking and the restorative process, which I apply to understand the domination structures that obstruct true collaboration.
The three experiences that bring a constant awareness of and questions about power dynamics to my attention are:
a) My skin color - As a black and indigenous woman, the history of "passing" (allowing others to believe you're white or non-black to ease your way through life) is something I knew happened around me, and so I decided to never allow it. Yet, I can not forget that my lighter skin color allows me privilege, no matter my ethnicity or gender.
b) Science and the evolution of human understanding - Our far reaching understanding of the universe, the natural environment, human development, the brain, and epigenetics demonstrate so much about our capabilities. The collective human possibilities are astounding! Yet, the low level beliefs about ourselves and "the other" are crippling our evolution.
c) Gender and the positioning of the female - There was a special moment in life when I realize that I would one day transition to being a woman. I was stoked...until the world made clear that being "not a man" will displace you. Your experiences, your needs, your ideas, your passions are secondary - quieted - or violently silenced. This is across spectrum of colorism, ethnicity, language, or location.
M.A., Critical Race Theory, Organizational Development
Minor: Ethnic Women’s Studies
B.S, Counseling and Educational Psychology, Family and Child Sciences
Certified Trainer from the Center for Nonviolent Communication
Certified Program Management Professional from the Project Management Institute
Certified in Design Thinking from IDEOU
Certified in Collaborative Leadership from IDEO
Certified in Adult Basic Education and Corporate Training from American College of Education
Certified in Developing and Implementing an Outward Mindset from the Arbinger Institute
Certified Facilitation Coach from the Center for Equity and Inclusion