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Bridging Divides to Build Community

A Special Forum presented with funding from the American Arbitration Association
international center for dispute resolution Foundation, inc.

SEPTEMBER 29-30, 2023

Conference Center at Rio
Rio Salado College
2323 W 14th St
Tempe, AZ 85281


An interactive program designed to engage participants in solutions-based discussions and develop solutions that will empower individuals to overcome the differences that divide them and find ways to come together to build community.

Forum Dates & Attendance Expectations

Attendees should reserve from late-afternoon on Friday, September 29 through the evening of Saturday, September 30, 2023Active participation throughout the forum discussions is essential. Dress is business casual.

Note: Participation in the Forum may qualify you for various professional education requirements.



The last day for refunds of registration fees is Friday, September 22, 2023.


Participants: The registration fee for participants, which includes all meals, activities, and materials, is $50.

In-Person Observers: The $30 registration fee for Observers includes all meals. Observers may not actively participate in discussions or activities.

Online Observers: This forum does not lend itself to virtual participation, but those who cannot attend in person and who wish to observe the mealtime presentations may attend virtually by Zoom for a fee of $10

Meal Programs:

Friday Dinner: Opening Session (Friday, September 29, 6:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.)

  • Welcome by Tara Jackson, President, Arizona Town Hall
    • Overview of Agenda and Town Hall process
    • Interactive Opening Activity
  • Dinner program
    • Welcome by Deanna Villanueva Saucedo, Associate Vice Chancellor, Center of Excellence in Inclusive Democracy, Maricopa Community Colleges, Tempe
    • Keynote speakers, Kristi Tate, Director, Civic Health Initiatives, Center for the Future of Arizona and Hon. Patricia Norris (retired), Judge, Arizona Court of Appeals 

Saturday Breakfast: Preparing for the First Working Session (Saturday, September 30, 7:30 a.m. - 8:30 a.m.)

  • Breakfast Program
    • Setting the Stage for Discussions -  Don Henninger, Co-Chair of the Arizona Democracy Resilience Network, featuring some rising stars in Arizona community building  

Saturday Lunch: Preparing for the Second Working Session (Saturday, September 30, 12:30 p.m. - 2:00 p.m.)

  • Lunch Program
    • Panel discussion - How and why leaders of organizations manage diverse groups across differences to achieve common goals
    • Military perspective: Ted Maxwell, President/CEO of the Southern Arizona Leadership Council, retired in 2018 as a Major General (USAF) and the Commander of the Arizona Air National Guarded Maxwell, former commander of the Arizona Air National Guard
    • International corporate perspective: John Pombier, Senior Manager of Community Engagement, Amazon
    • Educational perspective: Deanna Villanueva Saucedo, Associate Vice Chancellor, Center of Excellence in Inclusive Democracy, Maricopa Community Colleges
    • Tribal perspective:  Holly Figueroa, a member of the Hopi/Ohkay Owingeh Tribe, from the Sun Clan, and the Tribal Liaison for Blue Cross Blue Shield Arizona-Health Choice, who works to strengthen Tribal relations with the 17 tribes in the HCA service area, focusing on Crisis Service, Coordination of Care, Nation Building, Training and Education, and Reducing Health Disparities

Saturday Dinner: Completing the Work and Setting Priorities for Action (Saturday, September 30, 6:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.)

  • Dinner Program
    • Report-outs by Participant Panels 
    • Ranking of Selected Strategies
    • Feedback, Suggestions, Reactions
    • Closing Activities and Thank Yous

Fee Waiver and Stipend Available

We seek to include a broad and diverse spectrum of Arizona's population in this forum. While many diverse individuals are invited, the fees or time away from work may prevent their participation. Fee waiver and stipends can help to address some of the barriers to participation. If childcare, travel expense, registration fees, or other financial barriers would prevent your attendance, please apply for appropriate financial assistance.

Download and print the Stipend Application Form.

For additional information, please contact the Arizona Town Hall office by email at







Looking for additional information or resources pertinent to the forum?
For links to research reports, articles, and videos, visit the "Bridging Divides to Build Community" additional resources page.

For information about the current Arizona Town Hall discussion topic, "Equity for All Arizonans," visit the topic media page.  For information about past Town Halls, visit the Past Town Halls page. If you are interested in engaging Arizona Town Hall to as a presenter or facilitator for your organization, or would like to schedule a community town hall for your community, contact Arizona Town Hall staff by phone or email as linked below.

Arizona Town Hall is a non-partisan, non-profit organization that brings diverse people together to solve critical and often divisive policy issues

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#AZTownHall #WeGetPeopleTalking

Arizona Town Hall | P.O. Box 37108 | Phoenix, AZ 85069 | 602-252-9600 | Email Us

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