Workshop—Bridging Divides: What to Do When People Disagree

Please note: Registration is through the Association of Minnesota Counties. The League of Minnesota Cities is partnering with several state and local government organizations to co-sponsor this event, as listed at the bottom of this page.

As a city leader, there are times when you work with people who have different perspectives, values, and goals. Combining different visions can lead to new, innovative ideas and creative solutions that keep cities moving forward. However, when emotions run high and positions are deeply held, these situations can also lead to conflicts.

Join fellow local government officials this spring to explore how you can effectively diffuse conflicts and work to create solutions in your community!

Learn how to de-escalate difficult situations and move to effective problem solving by practicing how to:

  • Discover what others need to move forward, even when they aren't saying it
  • Articulate what you need in a way that creates conversation instead of confrontation
  • Manage strong emotions when they run high
  • Increase mutual understanding and build consensus
  • Integrate the needs of everyone involved to develop solutions that get implemented


  • Mariah Levison, Manager, Minnesota Bureau of Mediation Services, Office of Collaboration and Dispute Resolution
  • Dave Bartholomay, Program Coordinator, Minnesota Bureau of Mediation Services, Office of Collaboration and Dispute Resolution

About OCDR
The Minnesota State Office for Collaboration and Dispute Resolution (OCDR) is a division of the Bureau of Mediation Services. They serve as a statewide catalyst to advance the sustainable resolution of matters of public interest, broad use of community mediation, and effective collaboration and dispute resolution in state and local government.

Audience: This workshop is open to all local government officials, including city administrators, managers, mayors, councilmembers, clerks, and other city supervisors

Registration Fee: FREE
Please note: This workshop is free of charge, but registration is required. Lunch is not provided for this workshop.

Time: 9:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. (Check-in begins at 9 a.m.)

May 8—Staples
Sourcewell (formerly National Joint Powers Alliance)
202 12th Street NE (view map)
Staples, MN 56479
Virtual option now available for this date! Register here for the livestreamed event.

May 9—St. Paul
Minnesota Counties Intergovernmental Trust (MCIT)
100 Empire Drive, Suite 100 (view map)
St. Paul, MN 55103

May 29—Fergus Falls
Lakes Country Service Cooperative
1001 E. Mount Faith (view map)
Fergus Falls, MN 56537

May 30—Mankato
South Central Services Cooperative
2075 Lookout Drive (view map)
Mankato, MN 56003

The League of Minnesota Cities is co-sponsoring this event with Association of Minnesota Counties, Lakes Country Service Cooperative, the Minnesota Association of Townships, the Minnesota School Boards Association, the National Joint Powers Alliance, the Northeast Service Cooperative, the Northwest Service Cooperative, Resource Training & Solutions, the Southeast Service Cooperative & Wood Lake Meeting Center, the Southwest/West Central Service Cooperative, and University of Minnesota Extension.

Logo image for census workshop partners.