Helping People Work Together Better

Jim Becker, Extension Educator, Mt. Vernon Center
Cindy Erickson, Extension Specialist
University of Illinois Extension

Many of us are actively engaged in community groups and organizations working to identify issues and develop solutions. If you are serving as a volunteer facilitator, you need to bring an unbiased perspective, keep the group focused on the issues, and help problem-solve and set goals. Good facilitation skills can empower people to decide on issues, expand the communication process, and develop fair and equitable solutions.

Facilitation skills can help produce successful outcomes at public meetings, retreats, and planning sessions for groups and organizations. Whether you are involved with a non-profit or community based organization, or local government, in this session you can learn how to lead your group to be more efficient and effective.

About the Presenters . . . .

Jim Becker is an Extension Educator in Community and Economic Development, serving Southern Illinois from the Mt. Vernon Center. He has been working in community development, from Peace Corps experience in Thailand from 1987 to 1989 and nearly 15 years combined experience in Missouri and Illinois Extension services. His interests include tennis, horses, horse training, video production, and more recently, electric guitar.

Cindy Erickson is an Extension Specialist in Community and Economic Development Programs for University of Illinois Extension. Cindy serves as a co-leader of Extensionís community and economic development team, which includes Extension educators and specialists who develop and provide programs throughout the state in local government, customer service, facilitation, community leadership, workforce development, immigrant rights and responsibilities, strategic planning, affordable housing, and rural tourism and recreation. Her experience working with and facilitating groups has spanned statewide organizations, national Extension committees, University of Illinois Extension and campus committees and task forces, student groups, as well as local community and school volunteer groups.


Laboratory for Community and Economic Development | College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences
University of Illinois Extension | University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign