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Meet an AGM workshop leader: Shawn Conway

Published April 22, 2019

CHF Canada’s AGM is coming up in June, and we’ve got over 50 workshops for you to choose from. We’ll be introducing you to a few of our workshop leaders.

This week, meet Shawn Conway, a qualified mediator and consultant for CHF Canada, with many years’ experience in communities and housing co-operatives.

What are you most looking forward to about CHF Canada’s AGM?

I’m really keen to meet CHF Canada members from all over and to begin a longer conversation about how co-ops can prevent and manage conflicts and tensions and instead foster healthy relationships and a more dynamic, engaged community.

What will you be teaching people about in your workshop?

I’ll be facilitating “Mediation and dispute resolution in your co-op,” an introduction to alternative dispute resolution (ADR) and mediation for housing co-operatives.

My goal is to deepen awareness of how ADR works, how it can help, and when it is appropriate in the spectrum of responses co-ops have in addressing problems and conflicts.  I have been a trainer and mediator for over 15 years and have a good understanding of how co-ops suffer from and can recover from conflicts.  I hope workshop participants will leave with greater understanding and some ideas about how to deal with conflicts.

What do you think is the most pressing issue (or exciting opportunity) facing co-ops right now?

I can see on the horizon several emerging challenges and potential conflicts related to a) backlogs in capital improvements, b) pressures on members’ income and financial security, and c) the challenges to creating and sustaining true “community”.

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