Public Programs

Welcome!  The Sofia Center’s public programs are designed to bring together educators from diverse schools and organizations for collegial, dynamic, and aesthetic shared learning.  From the importance of play to the role of wonder, from design thinking to place-conscious education, topics and themes are chosen to offer intellectual challenge, invite reflection, and inspire individual and organizational shifts in practice.  We hope you will join us.


Connect with colleagues.  Investigate a topic.  Refuel and rethink your practice.  Act!

Reflect : Innovate : Act is a monthly series of monthly seminars and workshops open to educators throughout the community.  These events encourage professional inquiry and shared expertise, while also offering rich content, inspiration, and an aesthetic experience that honors the passion and hard work of educators.  Each month we investigate a different topic or issue, and sessions are led by the Sofia Center Director and educators from across the community.  Sofia Center participants represent a wide range of schools and organizations, including public, charter, and private schools, pre-K through university level.  Since launching Reflect : Innovate : Act in January 2013, we have been thrilled to welcome educators from over 250 schools and organizations.

The 2020-2021 Reflect : Innovate : Act Series

Join our mailing list to receive invitations to our monthly events!



October 22nd RIA Event

An Free Online Gathering! Register below.

Recent RIA Program Highlights

RIA Program Topics 2013-Present

Dec2019Walk Off the Trail--And Find the True North of Your Educator JourneyApr2016Restore
Oct2019Social Justice in the SchoolhouseMar2016Educators as Artists: National Hispanic Cultural Center
Sep2019The Pedagogy of Love: Exploring the Transformative Possibilities of Centering Love in Our Education PracticeJan2016Colloquy 5      
May2019Share Your Story: Design with UsDec2015Emotional Intelligence
Apr2019Movie Night: Brilliant Talks + Inspired DialogueNov2015Imagination + Learning
Feb2019Educators as ArtistsOct2015Reflective Practice: Define + Discuss + Design
Jan2019Mindfulness & Education with Special Guest Michelle DuValSep2015Teacher Leadership
Dec2018Winter Stillness: Workshop with ABQ Poet Laureate Michelle OteroMay2015Year in Review & Mapping the Road Ahead
Nov2018Colloquy #9: Teaching + Leading with Courage in Troubled TimesMar2015Ritual & Ceremony in Education
Oct2018Ode to the Natural WorldFeb2015Colloquy 4: Movement & Learning                                    
Sep2018The Pedagogy of Love: Exploring the Transformative Possibilities of Centering Love in Our Education PracticeJan2015Mindfulness and Education                                       
May2018The Science of HappinessDec2014The Idea Exchange
Mar2018Colloquy 8: Teaching, Leading & Taking Action in the Aftermath of School ShootingsNov2014Reggio Emilia & The Wonder of Learning:  NM Museum of Natural History & Science
Feb2018Reflective Practice: Models for Deepening Practitioner Skill & WisdomOct2014Colloquy 3: Place-Conscious Education                         
Jan2018What's Your Superpower?Sep2014The Labyrinth of Teaching & Learning      
Dec2017Colloquy 7: Gender EquityApr2014Design Thinking for Educators
Nov2017The Power of StoryMar2014Teaching as a Creative Act
Oct2017When Grief Comes to School: Navigating Grief with Students, Families, & ColleaguesFeb2014Colloquy 2
Sep2017"Education is an Act of Love" (Paulo Friere)Jan2014Social Justice & Cultural Competence
Apr2017Ritual + Ceremony in the SchoolhouseDec2013Tell Your Story: Educators’ Voices
Mar2017Mindfulness + Education with Special Guest Michelle Duval                                       Nov2013Reclaiming Wonder
Feb2017Building Authentic Community Partnerships: Pedagogy, Purpose, & Models with Keynote Speaker Dr. Monica KowalOct2013Colloquy 1
Jan2017Inspiration 2017Sept2013Listening Matters
Dec2016Setting the Stage: How We Use Space, Materials, and Design for LearningSept2013Building Inspirational & Innovative Professional Development Programs (Sat. Retreat)
Nov2016Colloquy 6: Teaching  + Leading after the ElectionApr2013What’s Your Superpower?
Oct2016The Labyrinth of Teaching + Learning, 2.0: Bosque Retreat CenterMar2013Seminars & Conversations
Sep2016Play + Learning, Play + LeadingFeb2013Mid-Winter Mini Retreat
May2016Diversity + Equity: 3 Workshops on Race, Gender, Power and PrivilegeJan2013Share What Works


What happens when we lead with a sense of wild possibility?  What emerges when we shift the wild ride of leadership from something stressful or out of control to something wonderfully innovative and full of heart?  Each spring, the Sofia Center brings together education leaders from public, independent, and charter schools, pre-K through University level, along with education leaders working beyond schools, for inquiry, rejuvenation, and strategy focused on leading with intention and passion.  

What is Wild Leadership?

The Wild Leadership Retreat began in 2015 as an exploration of what it means to lead with courage and wisdom, defining wild as going being conventional expectations and doing so with passion.  Over the last five years, the Sofia Center has developed a set of eight Wild Leadership principles, informed by a wide range of education scholars and practitioners.  These principles offer a vibrant framework for our retreat and a pathway for education leaders as they navigate the challenges of leading with a strong combination of savvy skills and full heart.  Please join us to expand your leadership capacity, build your leadership network, and refine your leadership mission.

See below the invitation for additional details.



What Does a Day at Wild Leadership Look Like?

Each year’s retreat includes a combination of workshops, discussion, movement, reflection, art, and toolkit building.  A typical day includes optional early-morning Yoga or a walk in the bosque, followed by delicious breakfast and an opening session that explores a complex leadership topic such as the role of education leaders in shaping the culture of their schools and organizations.  This might be followed by an interactive session on the importance of play or how to design and lead productive and compelling meetings. From there, participants would be invited into small-group conversation or writing. After reconnecting for lunch and conversation, the afternoon would include workshops on topics such as deepening our cultural competency or clarifying our leadership mission.  The evening would include dinner in the beautiful dining room that looks out to the bosque and the mountains beyond, followed by a coffee house where participants are invited to share their writing, art, and music. You can count on at least a small group of participants talking late into the evening, often sitting outside under the Cottonwoods. You can see the 2019 Wild Leadership agenda here.

Who Participates?

The retreat is designed both for experienced leaders in need of reconnection with the purposes of their work and a tune-up of their leadership skills, as well as for emerging leaders who are at the beginning of their leadership journeys.  Past participants have included school principals, instructional coaches, department leaders, and deans, as well as education leaders working in education non-profits and government entities. Most have come from communities across New Mexico, although we have had participants from across the country.  Part of the richness of the retreat is the meaningful connection forged among participants coming from diverse organizations and backgrounds. We value shared expertise and the voice and wisdom of each participant.

Who Are the Retreat Leaders?

We look forward to meeting you at the retreat and hearing your leadership story!  In the meantime, here is a little bit about Sheryl, Tamisha, and Elsa, the 2020 retreat leaders.  We will also be joined by guest leaders for the Yoga and Mindfulness offerings.

What Is the Retreat Center Like?

Tucked away off of a main thoroughfare in Albuquerque, the Bosque Retreat Center is a beautiful oasis on gorgeous grounds with light-filled buildings.  Most sessions will take place in the Center’s Conference Room and Gathering Space, the latter with floor to ceiling windows facing east. All meals are served in the retreat center’s dining room, and we provide healthy snacks, good coffee, and other beverages throughout the retreat.  The overnight accommodations are simple but elegant, located in the same building as the beautiful Gathering Space. Rooms are single occupancy, most with twin beds and a small writing table. There are private bathrooms located throughout the residence area, but they are not attached to rooms.  The Bosque Retreat Center is owned by the Episcopal Diocese of the Rio Grande, and we are honored to be returning there for the sixth year. You can see more of the retreat center here.  

What Participants Say about Their Experience

My experience at Wild Leadership was beyond wonderful.  It gave me great tools, connections, and insight into the work I do now and what I want to do in the future.
-Giovianna Burrell, Big Brothers Big Sisters, Albuquerque

Getting the chance to meet and work with a very diverse group of educational learners is key for me. It is wonderful to explore and learn about current educational topics with individuals from private, public, urban, and rural schools, as well as from educational non-profits. I have been able to gain much deeper insight and have developed a much more global view of how various topics and initiatives affect different educational systems.
Lori Arnold, Cleveland Middle School, Albuquerque

It matters so much to me to know I have colleagues across the community who share in the vision of leading with love and bravery. To not be alone in these dark times is something of a solace, and Wild Leadership gave me new tools for accomplishing what I would like to as a leader.
Tanesia Hale-Jones, Escuela del Sol Montessori, Albuquerque

Leaders benefit when they have an opportunity to read, think, and reflect. The Sofia Center’s Wild Leadership Retreat fosters critical thinking and challenges educational leaders to innovate.
Julie Radoslovich, South Valley Academy, Albuquerque

The Sofia Center’s Wild Leadership Retreat was a marvelous and inspiring experience. The combination of wise leaders sharing their insights and passions with us, and the beauty and peace of the bosque, was magical.  Topics ranged from engendering positive cultural change to honoring and including the most marginalized in our communities to brass tacks items such as making meetings meaningful and effective. I emerged feeling re-energized and hopeful about my own potential as a leader and about what might be accomplished at our school.
Leslie Livingston, Desert Academy, Santa Fe

Recommendations + Information

– For an immersive retreat experience, we recommend staying overnight.
– Participants should plan to attend the entire retreat; it does not work well to arrive late or leave early.  Start and end times for the program portions of each day are listed on the invitation.
– Participants receive a Wild Leadership journal and toolkit, along with other materials.
– Registrants will receive additional details prior to the retreat.
– Please contact us with any questions!

New Sofia Center Course Offering

Fall 2019


Please join us for a vibrant, restorative gathering of educators – where the focus will be on individual rejuvenation, collective inquiry and reflection, and reconnection with the larger purposes of our work as educators. There will be no talk of standardized tests, assessment protocols, article deadlines, or papers to grade! Instead, there will be rich discussion with colleagues, walks in the beautiful high desert, inspirational readings, and time for your own renewal and reconnection with your calling. This retreat is open to all teachers, pre-K through university level; from public, charter, or independent schools; and whether working in traditional school settings or educational non-profits.

The first educator renewal retreat was held at the beautiful Ghost Ranch Education and Retreat Center in Abiquiu, New Mexico. Please check back for information about future retreats.

As a public educator and school administrator I have benefited personally from the innovative professional development efforts of Bosque School’s Sofia Center. The Sofia Center offers a place where teachers and school leaders can come together and imagine an educational setting in which the art of teaching is celebrated, whether it is bringing mindfulness into the classroom or engaging young minds with play.  I am a better leader and our teachers are better educators – all because of the unique learning opportunities offered by the Sofia Center.

                             – Julie Radoslovich, Principal/Director at South Valley Academy, Albuquerque