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David Westerlund

Life is improv. There is no script. As humans we are all improvisers – adjusting, adapting, discerning, tuning in to each other, creating, collaborating in the unfolding moments of life. Or at least we have the capacity for these skills.

Here’s the good news:

  • These skills can be learned, these muscles strengthened.

  • When we do, teams perform at a higher level of engagement.

  • We build resilience, which is critical in our workplaces, in our world, at this time.

My workshops are potent because they allow staff teams to experience a different way of being together — one where they are paying attention, focused, supportive. Trust, joy, and creativity spontaneously emerge. Because it’s embodied learning, it more easily globalizes into our whole selves and our day-to-day work environment.

I am a voracious learner who continually integrates learning in my life. You’ll find me reading umpteen books from a wide variety of disciplines, finding connections between seemingly disparate elements. Whether in my work or as a volunteer in my community, I take initiative, as a passionate enthusiast, to bring greater health to our life together.

Seven years ago, I tasted improv at my workplace for the first time and I was hooked. I remember feeling what it felt like to create something together and feel supported. I’ve been a student of improv through the Upfront Theatre even since then and it’s transformed my life. Rather than stage performance being my focus, I’ve been fascinated and curious about how this world of applied improv – improvisation beyond the theatre – has incredible potency for innumerable realms of life.

The heart of my passion is working with organizations to catalyze greater organizational health. When our teams are healthier, our costs and turnover go down,  our ability to achieve more on limited resources goes up.

If you are looking for a workshop for your staff that is innovative, unlocks joy, builds trust, and creates resiliency please contact me. I’d love to sit down with you and see if what I bring could be a good fit for your organization.

Educational and Work Experience

  • B.S. Industrial Engineering, 1997, University of Pittsburgh

  • Worked 7 years at an environmental services company

  • Worked for 14 years in non-profit sector

  • Director of Development for 4 years at non-profit coming alongside those affected by incarceration, addiction, and immigration

  • Student and performer at The Upfront Theatre since 2011

  • Member of the Applied Improvisation Network (global)

  • Member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals/Advancement Northwest

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A Rocha Canada, Surrey, BC


AFP/Advancement NW - Forum on Strategic Fundraising - 2017, 2018, 2019 Speaker and Presenter


Bastyr University - Admissions and Enrollment 

Campfire Central Puget Sound

Camp Sealth (Vashon Island)

Christ the Servant Lutheran Church


Cordata Elementary School – teachers and staff


DSHS – Adult Protective Services

DVSAS (Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Services)


Francis Place (Catholic Community Services)


Friendship House

Lighthouse Mission - Staff team, Ascent Recovery Home, Agape Women's Recovery Home

New Earth Recovery


Peace Health - Patient Experience Team


Peace Health - Hospital Chaplains


Skagit Valley College faculty

Skagit Valley College Foundation

Southern Wesleyan University - One Life (intensive student leadership program)

US Department of Agriculture - Center for Training and Development

United Way of King County (Seattle) – Development team

WWU IDEA Institute - 80 Entrenpreneurship and Innovation Students

Youth Dynamics

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