Sunday, November 29, 2015

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Citizens and Police In Conversation: A Promising First Step

Anastasia’s Commentary on last Saturday’s “Coffee House Conversation on Humanizing Citizen-Police Relations II”

With special acknowledgements on our podcast to Lieutenant Jason Keckler of the Frederick City Police Force, Jeanette Bartelt, Hillcrest Community Coordinator and Sue deVeer, New Horizons Curriculum Development Chairperson:

My Possible Society In Motion Radio Show co-host, Jack Slattery, out did himself in our broadcast today titled “Citizens and Police In Conversation: A Promising First Step”

With Jack’s astute and thoughtful partnering with me, I think we did an uplifting program. He certainly helped me recount some of the highlights of our wonderfully progressing Coffee House Conversations Project in Frederick, Maryland as it played out last Saturday.

If you would like a few moments of uplifting listening, in line with the spirit of our now approaching holiday season, today’s program can serve to remind you that citizens and police can work together to support one another in reaching the higher planes of cooperation

Listen to this show, now on podcast, to get a taste of this and what is to come from us in the months ahead through our Coffee House Conversations Project.

I think a listen will help lift you out of any discouragement you might feel with citizen police relations as the media paints them across the country though it was just a “promising first step.”

Perhaps you will even be uplifted enough with what you hear to make sure to join us next Saturday for –

Coffee House Conversation on Humanizing Citizen-Police Relations “III”
December 5, 2015
3:00 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Hillcrest Elementary School

Details and Reservations Contact: Anastasia 240.409.5347

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Coffee House Conversations On Humanizing Citizen-Police Relations II

Here we are back again!

Another important community development event 
sponsored by the New Horizons Support Network, Inc.

Coffee House Conversations On Humanizing Citizen-Police Relations II

partnering with the Frederick City Police

Details below

Friday, November 6, 2015

Empowerment Series, Coffee House Conversations

Press Release

Coffee House Conversations Project Announces Plans For Hillcrest Empowerment Series

As the New Horizons Support Network, Inc. sponsored Coffee House Conversations mission heads into its second season, 2015 – 2016, the planning team for the project announced a forthcoming series, devoted to citizen-police relations in the Hillcrest neighborhood community.

The series will begin on Saturday, November 21 with a New Horizons’ format discussion geared toward establishing ground rules for dialogue on the presently charged topic of citizen-police relations. The second event of the series, scheduled for Saturday, December 5, will spotlight police officers’ personal stories, followed by a third conversation program focusing on citizen stories on the topic.

Bringing a “can do” message to the fore once again through guided community dialogue, New Horizons Support Network Executive Director Anastasia Rosen-Jones and the Coffee House Conversations Volunteer Team are now ramping up their efforts to empower citizens and police to work more closely together with the goal being enhanced teamwork. According to Rosen-Jones, a quote of Sir Robert Peel, father of modern day community policing, pointedly underscores the theme of the series, “….the police are the public and the public are the police…” 

These Coffee House Conversations On Humanizing Citizen-Police Relations will be introduced and moderated by Rosen-Jones and feature opening comments by newly appointed Frederick City Police Chief, Edward Hargis. The program will then move forward into an open group discussion to establish norms or ground rules for effective citizen-police dialogue that will serve as a foundation for the series. Input from the group at-large, as well as the participating police officers is expected to spark a lively discussion and help to ensure the objective.

This first in the series of four Coffee House Conversations On Humanizing Citizen-Police Relations will be held at Hillcrest Elementary School, 1285 Hillcrest Drive, Saturday, November 21 from 3 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. 

New Horizons Support Network, Inc. is a non-profit organization that offers programs designed to teach community development and violence-prevention skills and strategies through the conversations model of its “Small Zones of Peace” Project initiative. Now in the process of contributing these organizational strengths to the development of a Frederick County civic conversations coalition, New Horizons, under Ms. Rosen-Jones guidance, is currently building a coalition with a weekly volunteers’ meeting at Dublin Roasters

Information about the overall project and the coalition can be found at: Ms. Rosen-Jones can be reached at: 240.409.5347 or

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Coffee House Conversations Project Announces Plans For Empowerment Series

If you are concerned about current (and, maybe, past) relationships between citizens and police officers – and -- you live in Frederick County, Maryland, this series of Coffee House Conversations may be just the event for you. 

(If you do not live in Frederick County – and – want to join us, you are welcome to attend. Contact me, Anastasia, at: Cell: 240.409.5347 or Email: for details and to reserve your place.)

The series begins with Coffee House Conversation #1 of 4, "How To Talk About Citizen-Police Relationships"  -- November 21, 3:00 to 6:00 p.m. (See below for the full list of sessions planned for the series.)

Humanizing our Citizen --
Police Relationships II
Designed especially for the Hillcrest community neighborhood, Frederick, Maryland

(Humanizing our Citizen -- Police Relationships I event was held on Saturday, October 17 at Dublin Roasters, Frederick, Maryland)

The November 21st will be a special event designed to develop ground rules for dialogue between citizens and police officers.

About the series: The series will focus attention on the neighborhood problems of the Hillcrest community of Frederick, Maryland with citizen-police relationships as its pivotal discussion topic.

The complete series will include the following (and may be extended)
  • How To Talk About Citizen-Police Relationships (and other hot button civic concerns) November 21, 3:00 to 6:00 p.m.
  •  Police Officers Share Personal Stories – Saturday, December 5 , 3:00 to 6:00 p.m.
  • Citizens Sharing Stories of Their Relations With Police – TBA, 2016
  • Where Do We Go From Here To Humanize Our Citizen-Police Relationships? – TBA, 2016
Some of the key principles behind our project include –

Police Philosophy
"To maintain at all times a relationship with the public that gives reality to (the principle) that the police are the public and that the public are the police…"
Sir Robert Peel, noted father of modern day community policing

New Horizons Philosophy

“An enemy is someone whose story you have not heard” 
Unknown origin

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Community-Building: Pathway To The Bettering Of Society

 with Anastasia and Jack

Thursday, October 29, 2015, 6:30 p.m.

In tonight's program Jack assists Anastasia in introducing the key element of her life's work; community-building. The principles of the Groder-Rosen Addiction Development Theory (GRAD) are spotlighted and woven together to create a lively and inspiring discussion.

In Anastasia's words, as noted in the GRAD theory; "Most importantly and, possibly, most effective in healing and transforming the challenges of today's world for the individual, affecting the individual, personally, the family, groups and organizations as well as our
entire society and politics, can be the profound impact on these of an "exceptional community" life."

Listen in as Anastasia and Jack open up their topic by simply dialing in at: 347.237.5351 from your phone or on your computer at: Community-Building: Pathway To The Bettering Of Society"

Then join us, after the broadcast portion for our open-ended, leisurely and informal Coffee House Conversation by Conference Call. Dial in 712.432.0600, access code 640883. 7:00 p.m. until ???

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

How Did It Go: Humanizing Our Citizen-Police Relations?

This article written in appreciation of the leadership and tireless devotion to community outreach of Frederick (Maryland) City Police Chief, Edward Hargis.

Almost flawless! Synergy was the most probable reason; the community dance we did was beautiful. 

To truly appreciate the music of it, one has to be observant as if from a helicopter or hot air balloon view. A distant perspective allows us to best see the richness and the textures interweaving. And the significance of our turning aside from fear and judgments to come just a little bit closer to citizens and police, sharing our humanity, building a team.
“…the police are the public and 
the public are the police…”
Be sure to read my manuscript in progress, “The Middle East Crisis In My Backyard,” for an introduction to what I mean by “synergy” and how it plays out in leaders, followers and did throughout our event. Then imagine how it might have looked in real time. 

Imagine the fingers of one hand all working together as the system they are intended to be. The quote of Sir Robert Peel, shown under the Police hat above, suggests this ideal for citizens and police, working together as a team.

The thumb might be identified as the leader. Just as the new Frederick City Police Chief, Ed Hargis, might have been, identifiably, the official leader at our Coffee House Conversation. Yet, as true leadership actually functions, “exceptional leaders” easily make room for the strengths and contributions of others.

What I experienced at our Saturday event was that our official leader, designated by our local Mayor and Alderman), showed not the slightest discomfort with the leadership that I, Anastasia, also took on as New Horizons’ Executive Director, additionally making respectful room for and including Police Officer Lieutenant Jason Keckler.

Admittedly we had an unusually small group to work with this time which might have made our task a bit easier, certainly less complicated. (Next time we will alter this small snag). 

Nonetheless, at only one point did a brief snag start to arise. Soon remedied by the meeting group, each and everyone doing their part.

That circumstance was brought about by an obvious antagonism on the part of one attendee. However, when I called a halt to the exchange and brought people back to referencing the “Dialogue versus Debate” contrast, the attendee immediately shifted herself to a less blaming, more affirming manner of bringing up her citizen-police concern and we were all right back on track.

She had started out with a bit of ill will. But when alerted by my intervention, she immediately shifted her stance to one that demonstrated being on the same team. Wow! 

Almost flawless!  We can all do this, if we are mindful.

Thus we wrapped up our Coffee House Conversation event in an atmosphere of mutual respect, a fulfilled intention of citizens and police leaning in to one another, resulting in, at least, a modicum of more trust and relationship building between citizens and police. 

Small steps became a starting place.

Most impressive for me was that some areas of distrust and fear were reversed, if not entirely, at least beginning was made.

As for me, personally, I came away proud and happy.  

Next time, Saturday, November 21, we will do even better.

I wish you could have been there. Maybe next time you will be.