Michelle James is a pioneering
creativity catalyst who has been using universal creative principles and the process of emergence as the basis for her work
with thousands of people - individuals, corporations and communities - since starting her first business in the mid-nineties.
Michelle’s passion is infusing creativity and imagination into current knowledge and information systems for individual,
organizational and social transformation. Her commitment is to cultivate and focus creativity, aliveness and meaning
in the workplace as part of the emerging, holistic new work paradigm - one where creativity, service, purpose and commerce
Michelle has consulted on,
designed and delivered creativity and innovation initiatives and programs for organizations of all sizes. She provides generative
processes, a grounded framework, whole-brain integrated learnings, and novel experiences to allow organizations to naturally
co-create what is essential for them to remain consistently vital, resilient, and innovative in rapidly changing times and
naturally expand their capacities to engage their environment. Michelle expands
the "playing field" by integrating multiple dimensions of creative experience into all of her work. She developed
the Creative Emergence Process, Principles and Practices - which is both a framework and integrative approach for creatively
unfolding what's next within an individual or system.
Known for her original and richly textured dynamic
learning environments, Michelle presents at learning and creativity events internationally, and creates such events in the
Washington, DC area. Her original programs and techniques have been featured in newspapers, audios, books and on television.
She is one of the pioneers in the fields of Applied Creativity, Applied Improvisation and Somatic (body-centered) Creativity.
Michelle founded The Center for
Creative Emergence based on her experiences with the natural creative emergence process that unfolded over time in her multi-faceted
personal journey, as well as and years of work with and study of various facets of creative process and complex systems. For
Michelle, the work of the Center is a calling many years in the making that began with a profound life-changing vision that
emerged at age 22. This vision became her mission, passion, and purpose - and initiated the long, and sometimes rocky, road
of cultivating and integrating that vision. The Creative Emergence Process, Principles and Practices are based on years of
work with clients in which certain themes, patterns and self-organizing principles showed up in every emergent creative process.
She later discovered a coherent fit with this process and what she learned studying process work, depth psychology, systems
thinking, complexity sciences and improv theory.
founding the Center, Michelle owned and operated a creative services/marketing firm followed by an organizational development
and training company. Prior to that, she spent a few years spear-heading innovative projects while working in communications,
sales, marketing, and the media, including co-establishing a newspaper (where she got her taste of entrepreneurship and never
went back). In these worlds, she learned first-hand how creative environments function and thrive. Also informing Michelle’s
work is her experience and education in creative processes and techniques, brain research, organizational change, group process
work, depth psychology, integral theory, emerging group/system dynamics approaches (such as holacracy, appreciative inquiry,
world cafe, open space, futuresearch, polarities, psychodrama, dialogue, participative design), accelerated learning, the
arts, movement, bodywork, mythology, improv theater, systems thinking, consciousness studies, storytelling and the complexity
sciences...and first-hand transformational experiences
in her life. Her degrees are
in English Literature and Communications Studies with years of diverse post graduate study.
Michelle performed full-length improvised plays with an improv troupe for 10 years through 2010,
is an abstract painting artist, and is a CoreSomatics Movement and Bodywork Master Practitioner. CS is an psycho-physical
creative healing modality. She also founded and runs the Capitol Creativity Network - an experiential creativity hub that has been meeting monthly
since 2003. In 2008, Michelle was recognized
for Visionary Leadership in Fast Company's blog, Leading Change. She produces and curates the bi-annual Creativity in Business Conference in Washington, DC. Most recently, she developed and hosted an online Creativity in Business Telesummit with creativity thought leader-practitioners from all over the
Associates: Cocreators and Collaborators
Creative Associates have expertise and years of experience in a variety of disciplines: creativity, innovation, organizational
development, organizational change, management consulting, leadership development, integral theory, marketing, expressive
arts, visual communications, brain research, and complexity sciences. All of the Creative Associates are well established,
seasoned professionals. The group consists of entrepreneurs, consultants, leaders, visionaries, change makers, and educators
who own and operate successful businesses in their fields. Based on the scope and needs of your project, we assemble the team
who can best serve you.