Brenda often jokes that she has two perfect role models of how NOT to handle conflict which are her parents. She use to call her father “Old Yeller” and her mother “The Silencer”.
Old Yeller would often flare up easily and without notice and the kids would run to get out of his way.
The Silencer had the silent treatment down to an art form and was able to go on for days not speaking to anyone.
That was a long time ago and Old Yeller has mellowed and the Silencer has learned to speak up but not before their marriage ended which was no surprise based on their communication skills!
A funny thing happened though when Brenda found herself newly married and an instant stepmom to a nine year old boy… She became just like Old Yeller and The Silencer when she was unhappy and stressed. In short, good & bad – Brenda was a product of her upbringing.
This approach to conflict felt absolutely terrible because all it produced were hurtful words, increased frustration and greater disconnection to her family. Brenda realized that if she wanted to keep her marriage and family together, she needed to find a better way to handle stress and conflict by communicating more effectively.
The year was 1996 and her journey in dispute resolution began…
In 1998 Brenda obtained her Certification in Conflict Resolution from the Justice Institute of British Columbia and shortly after began her mediation career as a Mediator for the Insurance Dispute Resolution Program.
With her hunger for knowledge and desire to learn and grow personally and professionally, she continued her journey by venturing into family mediation and received her Certification as a Comprehensive Family Mediator through Family Mediation Canada in 2009 as well as her Master Coaching Certification through the Stepfamily Association of America.
Any family work she does now focuses on helping Step & Blended families become successful in overcoming their unique challenges through stepfamily coaching.
Her heart and passion always brought her back to workplace conflict resolution and in 2012 Brenda received her national Chartered Mediator designation through the ADR Institute of Canada as well as her training certification in workplace conflict from the Mediation Training Institute International.
Brenda has a keen interest in the social sciences and knew that the knowledge she can obtain to blend programs with her conflict management coaching and training would help her clients gain a deeper self awareness of their conflict and communication styles as well as improve their interpersonal relationships with others. With that understanding of the benefits her clients would receive, she obtained her training certification in Strengths Deployment Inventory® as well as extensive training in Conversational Intelligence®.
It has been a lot of years, a lot of training and some amazing experiences along the way. In appreciation for the support from the Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) community, Brenda volunteered her time as a Director of the ADR Institute of British Columbia (ADRIBC) for 6 years and finished her term in 2017. She continues to be an active member of ADRIBC and is also on the National Training Committee with the ADR Institute of Canada.