The Story of GO!
Ruth has always been a soccer nut. She and her mother were finally able to play the sport after the passage of Title IX in the 1970s. From there, Ruth became a referee, referee assigner, coach, and stadium manager. She played recreationally for 35 years. The intersection of my soccer world and Ruth's professional world blossomed when she became the mom of two soccer-crazed sons. Their clubs and their teams needed help. Help with strategic planning. Help with boards of directors. Help with team managers. Help running tournaments. Help designing and managing programs. Help supporting coaches. Help with communication. Help with conflict resolution. Ruth started helping. Over the years, that work became a part of her professional work.
It is facilitation in a different colored jersey!
Ruth realized that she had a huge pile of simple to use, field-tested materials and resources that she had created to help soccer clubs run better. Ruth adored designing workshops for clubs, leagues, state associations, and national organizations, and they were consistently well-received. Then the concept of GO! emerged.
With the help of talented and visionary colleagues, mentors, and friends, Ruth realized that there was a way to leverage today’s digital and on-line tools to create a library of these valuable resources for youth sports clubs everywhere. She developed a passion for creating better support for players like my two sons (Bryce and Colin), and someday, for my two grandchildren (Logan and Leilani). This support lives in our “Off Field Teams” where quality collaboration needs to live within the coaches, administrators, volunteers, and other adults that make sports possible for our players.
Since its launch in mid-2017, GO! webinars have engaged coaches and administrators from 27 sports. Ruth and the GO! staff have fielded inquiries and worked with coaches, clubs, state associations, and leagues in 19 North American states and provinces, as well as others in Europe, South America, Australia, and Africa. The collection of GO! resources now numbers over 35 webinars and more than 60 resource documents, templates, checklists, and guides. Webinars and new documents are added regularly by GO! staff and in response to client requests. For example, the GO! Chase Excellence coaching communication series of five webinars was developed in direct response to a request from a Canadian soccer coach.
Ruth E. Nicholson, Manager of Nicholson Facilitation & Associates, LLC, is an International Association of Facilitators (IAF) Certified Professional Facilitator (CPF), visual and graphic facilitator, Certified Assessor, and trained mediator in private practice in Snohomish County, Washington USA. She is also a member of the US Institute for Environmental Conflict Resolution (USIECR) roster. She holds a master’s degree in public administration and offers over 20 years’ experience in organizational development, facilitation, conflict resolution, public policy, and non-profit organization management.
Ruth has also worked in youth and semi-professional sports, particularly soccer, for more than 30 years. She was one of four national finalists for the 2018 Hudl Innovator of the Year in youth soccer award. She is an avid writer and workshop presenter for youth sports blogs and coaching education events, including national sports leadership events, conferences, and conventions.
Nicholson Facilitation & Associates is a woman-owned private practice.
Ruth's passion is helping people build the relationships necessary to develop sustainable agreements and build well-functioning organizations. Read on below to learn more about Ruth's facilitation and mediation work, as well as the story of GO!
& Associates, LLC
914 - 164th Street SE, Suite B12 - #1702
Mill Creek, Washington 98012 USA
Email: [email protected]
Nicholson Facilitation & Associates, LLC 914 - 164th Street SE, Suite B12- #1702, Mill Creek, WA 98012 USA 425-385-2700 [email protected]
Facilitation and Mediation Work
Ruth has regularly served as both a lead facilitation and project manager responsible for project team management and staff supervision; meeting design and collaborative agenda development; document and meeting notes production; and project contracting, timeline, and budget. Many of her projects have spanned multiple years, involved agencies and stakeholders from multiple states, and represented facilitation team and administrative support budgets of $200,000-$650,000. My projects range from facilitation of a single group, to facilitation of an interagency management group and an associated advisory committee, to facilitation and administrative support of a 31-seat board with six standing sub-committees. Group sizes can vary from 12 to over 75 persons per meeting. In each my projects, the groups succeeded in reaching consensus on decisions regarding the key issues of concern from the sponsoring organizations.
Nicholson Facilitation & Associates, LLC’s work with federal, state, county, municipal, and tribal governments includes facilitation in the areas of land and resource management, endangered species conservation, nuclear and hazardous waste cleanup, military base closure and reuse, county mineral lands planning, and rural wastewater services. Associates and subcontractors in the areas of facilitation, public involvement, and technical writing are engaged as needed by project size, complexity, and location.
The firm has also provided mediation services in the area of land use and risk assessment, including mediation between federal government agencies and tribal governments. Nicholson Facilitation & Associates, LLC, projects often involve work with diverse stakeholders, including landowners; rural, natural resource-dependent communities; conservation and environmental concerns; user groups and recreationists; tribal governments; and a variety of local, state and federal agencies.
In addition to offering facilitation services, she has provided facilitation training in North America, as a one-on-one facilitation coach/trainer, and at international conferences in Africa, Asia, the Caribbean, Europe, and North America. I have also served as an international assessor evaluating candidates for professional facilitator certification in Africa, North America, and Asia.
Ruth Nicholson is the co-author of When There Are No Easy Answers...A Facilitators Guide to Designing Complex Events, which is based on input from over 100 facilitators around the world and the article Post-Agreement Conflict: A Reflection on the Causes and the Development of Skills to Address It. Her facilitation course, Make Meetings Meaningful: Practical Facilitation, was the only North American facilitation course endorsed by the International Association for Public Participation as a part of its Tier II Professional Development Series in 2006.