Rave Reviews

Our $500 million co-op serves companies in twelve states. We hired The Leaders’ Haven as a partner to create a new strategic plan and work with our board on high performance governance. The retreat was fantastic. We thoroughly enjoyed working with Cynthia Mills. She was outstanding in leading this effort.

Dale Mercer
President, Allied Building Stores

As a Past President and current board member of the national Association of Water Technologies, I had the opportunity to participate in a board retreat facilitated by Cynthia Mills of The Leaders’ Haven. It was my experience that she is truly exceptional at what she does.

Trace Blackmon
President, Blackmore Enterprises

Cynthia Mills has become our go-to person for our client associations when they are in need of strategic planning and board development, as well as governance best practices. She always does her homework and is prepared to facilitate the conversation in a meaningful way that resonates with each association’s culture.

Beth Palys
FASAE, CAE, President, Management Solutions Plus, Inc.

When my 2 brothers & I bought our parents’ ownership interests in our company, I knew two things: 1) We needed to set aside time for a strategic planning retreat with our leadership team and 2) Cynthia needed to facilitate it. What we were able to accomplish in a day with her expert guidance astonished all 9 members of our leadership team. We walked away with a very clear, very aligned vision for our future, and I know we couldn’t have gotten there without Cynthia. In the 4 months since the retreat, we’ve been able to share the plan with all 200 of our employees with Cynthia’s expert guidance. And we’re very excited to work together to realize our goals in the future!

Annie Gauthier
CEO, St. Romain Oil Company

When it came time for my Board of Directors to establish a strategic direction for the Association, I couldn’t think of anyone better in the industry to facilitate our strategic planning and Board orientation retreat. Cynthia had an authentic and pleasant way of helping my multi-directional Board build a common focus and vision for the Association. I personally witnessed a transformation happen in the room as Cynthia led us through comprehensive, real discussions about our Association and changing our trajectory. It was a tricky terrain to navigate with my Board and Cynthia executed and performed amazingly. She such a pro! My Board requested (on the spot) that she be invited back to work with us again the following year. After seeing her in action, I now refer to Cynthia as the Board Whisperer; kindly guiding Boards and organizations into shape one at a time.

Donte Shannon, CAE
Executive Director, Specialty Advertising Association of California

Cynthia Mills hit a home run for our family business. Her task was to help our management team create a strategic plan from the Stine Family business philosophy. Cynthia kept us focused and energized to complete our task on time and within budget. We now have a road map that defines our outcomes and strategies to make us more profitable, innovative and sustainable.

Dennis Stine
CEO & President, Stine Lumber Company

image003It is such a pleasure to work with Cynthia. Her enthusiasm and expertise are priceless. Finding Cynthia and “The Leaders Haven” was exactly what I needed as an association executive and at the perfect time. I have been COO (CEO role) for the past 4 years and we have grown exponentially at lightning speed. We needed to focus our Board and develop our next Strategic Plan and realized we needed help. I was referred to her by ASAE as a respected industry expert, coach and author. Cynthia has been a wealth of information and guidance for me.Cynthia was able to work with me and our Association President seamlessly and guided us through our first Board Orientation and training meeting.

Cynthia came to Orlando for our Annual Members Meeting to run our session. She commanded the audience with flawless delivery. She was accepted one for one by all 120 of our Board Members from around the world. Everyone came away from the training with statements like, “We should have done that long ago.” “Wow, that was the most informative and interesting session of the whole conference.” “That information is so important. I didn’t realize what I didn’t know.” and best of all…. “When can we have more training and learn more?”

We plan to continue to work with Cynthia for more Board training, Bylaws review, Board Policy Manual update, and the next steps in our Strategic Plan that will help us better serve our members and rocket our Association into the next level of success.

Jennie Nevin
COO, Themed Entertainment Association

After meeting Cynthia at several industry functions and attending a workshop led by her, I knew she would be the perfect fit for our group. She has a subtle charming way of leading diverse groups in a direction that they choose, while keeping them on track with a set agenda. Her ability to influence and lead makes the strategic planning process seem so simple.After our strategic planning, we had two wonderful things happen. 1) the entire group agreed that while they did not look forward to strategic planning, the day was much more enjoyable than they had ever imagined or experienced and 2) the group agreed to present the plan to a younger generation of members seeking their feedback and asking them to help guide the long-term process.

Angela Holland, CAE
President, Georgia Association of Convenience Stores

Towards the end of a very contentious dues discussion centered on equity and fairness we brought Cynthia Mills in to conclude a very sensitive debate surrounding it. Working with our task force, executive committee, and local association leadership, Cynthia guided us to an overwhelmingly positive vote. We could not have done it without her vast experience in planning discussions, focus, and empathy as a facilitator, or understanding of group dynamics. I highly recommend The Leaders Haven for any association working on strategic planning or constructively managing very tough internal dialogues.

Henry Chamberlain
FASAE, President & COO, BOMA International

Cynthia, thanks again for the outstanding strategic facilitation you did for ACA International. You were well prepared, insightful, and helped us to get more done than I thought we were going to be able to. That is a direct result of your leadership skills.

G. Scott Purcell
President, Professional Credit; ACA International Board Member

We hired Cynthia Mills to facilitate a strategic dialogue for our Board of Directors of CEOs, and she is amazing! She heard a lot of words and thoughts and corralled them both on paper into a strategic plan. Cynthia kept us on the straight and narrow and moved us efficiently and effectively through what could have been a chaotic agenda-free day and a half. And just at the right moment, she pulled videos and learning opportunities out of her magic laptop to shepherd us forward.We truly admire her skills as a facilitator and thought leader and cannot express enough how impressed we all were with the process she led and how much we look forward to continuing our work with her.

Roxann Mayros
CEO, VisionServe Alliance

We hired Cynthia Mills to facilitate our international strategic planning process. Within a week, we’ve already seen this plan – or its process – impact our work, with some really focused discussions on budgets and activities framed by our discussions. The next day, one of our Board members said: “Yesterday’s discussion in some ways transformed us.” High praise for her efforts!

I was amazed she pulled it together so quickly. Her guidance on the strategic plan has been fantastic, as well as her specific guidance on how we tell the story in an interesting, different, and hopefully dynamic and exciting way.

Chris Powers
Executive Director, TESOL

Working with Cynthia was a delight. From our pre work planning to execution of the session to follow up, every interaction was professional, effective and pleasurable. Cynthia led my Board through a strategy planning session, gaining input from each member and kept us on track. Cynthia has a keen ear for listening and providing practical advice and solutions.

Dawn Brehm
Executive Director, LTEN

I just wanted to write and thank you for speaking to our group and facilitating discussion about our strategic plan. You provided valuable tools and critical information, and the conversation stimulated on Friday spread across our meeting on Saturday and Sunday! Which is, of course, exactly what we were trying to do. So again, thank you so much. It was a delight to get to know you.

Dee Davis
President of RWA Board of Directors, Best-selling Author

Cynthia’s work with educating boards and staffs as to their duties, strategic planning, and other services are top-notch. I cannot say enough about the quality of work she provides or the heart she puts into every client she partners with. Cynthia is the consummate professional for your not-for-profit or association.

Chris Gergeni
Executive Director, Bayou Country Children’s Museum

I felt compelled to participate. I brought it to the attention of my then employer to have it turned down. I made the decision to participate on my own as I also began a career transition. Ultimately one of the best investments in myself ever.Right from the start of the first day, you got all of us from all realms of life to take our masks off ( not just lower them) in the first 3 or 4 hours …. As the journey continued there developed a camaraderie, connection and confidentiality in that room more than I have ever experienced anywhere. I now have 15 best friends that I know business wise I can call in a heartbeat and bounce off of with no worry about where it is going or if there is an agenda. This is a huge compliment to you and also to the people that participated in this inaugural class. It was a phenomenal opportunity and adventure to be part of; I entered with a clouded definition and direction pertaining to leadership, role models ,and mentors due to the unique path that I had taken in CRE. I came away with a clear picture of leadership, most of which was who I am but had not recognized or given myself credit for. With a this new confidence, direction and endeavor, I have begun utilizing significant portions of the class material to evaluate, develop and implement, my new teams and processes. This was one of the top 10 experiences that I won’t forget.

The highest compliment I can give to you, Cynthia is that you were able to bring this incredible journey together for us to encounter and experience, knowing that it did change peoples’ lives!!. Thank You

Brad McCahill
Operations Director, Electrical Services, Allied Reliability Group

BOMA GA contracted with Cynthia Mills of The Leaders’ Haven to develop a Leadership Masters Program. I spent a few minutes re-reading the students’ survey responses, and I reflected on the entire experience, from RFP through the final class day. Words really don’t do justice to the experience, but here goes: Cynthia has been more than on point; she’s been a partner, an inspiration, and a highly valued team member, guiding our association as we took an idea and turned it into one of the best course experiences we’ve ever developed. Students’ surveys consistently rated the experience 4.9 on a scale of 1 to 5, where 5 represents “far exceeded expectations.” In their words, “truly an amazing experience;” and “it is hard to remember what my expectations were, but I don’t think they came near the benefits of this class.” In my words: working with Cynthia Mills has been one of the most valuable experiences of my professional career.

Sharon Shuford,CAE, CTC CITE, LEED GA
Dir. of Events & Professional Development, BOMA GA

Leadership Masters’ Program- Developed by Cynthia Mills in conjunction with BOMA GA.

The CRE Leadership Masters Program was an amazing experience for me on many levels. The tools and information shared, and the learning that transpired was inspirational. The personal growth and development that each of us absorbed, not only made us better leaders, it made us better human beings. We learned so much from each other and of course having the program facilitated by Cynthia Mills was simply amazing.The thing that we all admire the most about working with Cynthia is that she JUST simply get’s it. She understands that you can’t force the psyche to conform to a certain idea or influence it in a predestine direction. She understands and demonstrates that level of awareness in every interaction, every exchange, and every moment she’s in your presence.

The way the course was designed, it allows the energy of a group or individual to flow in the direction that it naturally wants to flow. The way Cynthia guides and facilitates an energy produces amazing results because her natural style allows for so much creativity and freedom of expression. It’s a pleasure to work with someone holding that much compassion and awareness that so effortlessly produces profound results!

Russell Copeland
Senior Facilities, Manager, Cushman & Wakefield

Cynthia Mills led an intensive leadership program through an organization I have been involved with for many years. The training spanned the course of five months, and throughout that time, I grew as a leader within both my company and my family. Cynthia was able to help connect the values and principles taught in her course to every aspect of my life. I grew as a person, as a mother, and as a friend; growing as a leader within my company came naturally with my personal growth. Cynthia was tasked with helping 14 employees become stronger leaders, but instead she helped 14 people become stronger beings. I have learned so much and gained the ability to confront every obstacle and barrier to success in a way that will allow me to become a leader within my industry.

Amanda Morrison
Property Manager, Parkway Realty Services

Cynthia is an extraordinary individual that defines world class leadership. As a leader she clearly has the exceptional command of the distinction between transformation and change management.

David Zerfoss
CEO Group Chair at Vistage International;
CEO, The Zerfoss Group;

The Harley Langdale, Jr. Foundation engaged The Leaders’ Haven for our inaugural Grantee Workshop to provide training for the leaders in organizations to which we provide funding. We had high expectations for Cynthia’s time with our community’s non-profit leaders. She did not disappoint! She connected quickly and led attendees expertly through relevant concepts and principles and sent them away with a tool box of practical ideas.

Donnie Warren
Executive Director, Harley Langdale, Jr. Foundation

Cynthia was a huge hit at our board retreat. She was well prepared even though she was asked to fill in for another facilitator at the last minute. Her knowledge of association dynamics and boards made her effective at keeping us on track. She had a process for moving us forward but it was not rigid. Cynthia absolutely delivered on the stated objective of the retreat and we did it with fun and laughter. I can recommend Cynthia to you without hesitation.

Dr. Joe Siragusa
Executive Director, North Carolina Chiropractic Association

Thank you for everything that you’ve provided to BOMA Georgia over the last couple of years but most importantly, thank you for your dedication, enthusiasm and care of those people most important to me within the association.  They are so fortunate to partner with you.

Marcy Moneypenny, CPM®, RPA
Managing Director CBRE | Client Care US Investor Services,
BOMA GA Past President

Cynthia worked with us at BOMA Georgia to create a new strategic plan. She was extremely thorough in developing an understanding of our organization’s culture and our industry’s needs.  She was artful in creating a process that was inclusive, dynamic, and strategic. As a result, we have a solid plan for the future that far surpassed our expectations.  We are looking forward to working with Cynthia for years to come.

Gabriel Eckert
FASAE, CAE, Executive Director at Building Owner and Managers Association of Georgia

It was such a pleasure to have Cynthia facilitate a discussion with our Board on volunteer engagement and Board succession planning. From the start, Cynthia was easy to work with and took time to understand both our culture and our objectives for this session. Cynthia came to the meeting well prepared and made sure we stayed on track throughout day – all while keeping everyone engaged. She did an amazing job of listening to what people were saying (and not saying) and interpreting their meaning. More importantly, she helped us frame out our issues and provided a context to view them through. During the session, she was respectful, enthusiastic and made the day fun. She even won over the harshest critic on our Board. In the end, Cynthia provided us with a great road map to help us move forward. I would highly recommend Cynthia and look forward to working with her in the future.

Heidi Zimmerman
Executive Director, American Water Technologies

I had the privilege of working with Cynthia on the NAA’s strategic planning task force and experienced first-hand her dynamic leadership abilities. In my role as a board member, officer and president of the International Society of Arboriculture (ISA), I was fortunate to be the beneficiary of Cynthia’s sound guidance and counsel. Cynthia combines a keen intellect with great enthusiasm, integrity, and determination. I am a great admirer of her professional leadership skills, grateful for her impact on the tree care industry, and consider myself blessed for her friendship.

Lauren Lanphear
President, Forest City Tree Protection Co., Inc,
Former TCIA and ISA Chair of the Board

Cynthia is a consummate professional with high energy, unquestioned integrity and effective communication skills. She is the rare combination of a strategist who can assemble the necessary details and tactics to implement the picture. Cynthia is a leader with great personal warmth, empathy, even with those with whom she may disagree.

Robert Dolibois
Former ASAE Chair of the Board & EVP of ANLA

She is a forward thinker, yet a practical staff leader; a strategic thinker, yet a tactical planner; a hard working executive, yet easy to work with; and she is just damn good at what she does.

Garis Distelhorst
Former CEO, Marble Institute & National Association of College Stores;
Former ASAE Chair of the Board

Cynthia Mills is a true professional who understands that superior organizational leadership involves decisiveness, vision, and the empowerment of others so they can become the best they can be. She is a dynamic individual with much to offer any business or organization.

Peggy Davidson
Executive Director, Pilot International and Pilot International Foundation

Cynthia has a way about her that causes everyone around her to feel compelled to do better. Her infectious charisma inspires one to face issues and to embrace change to overcome mediocrity.

Kevin Caldwell, CTSP
Owner, Caldwell Tree Care,
TCIA Board of Directors

Cynthia is a results-driven and proactive Executive and a thought leader, who transforms organizations. She has a unique range of skills in that she can move with ease and certainty between strategies and big picture to tactics and details. She possesses high business acumen and knowledge, including financial. Cynthia has the highest level of integrity and professionalism.

Pat Mixon
Managing Partner, The Infrastructure Company

FarmHouse International Fraternity selected Cynthia to facilitate our executive director transition, because she took the time to really get to know our organization’s culture, values, and strategic initiatives. She has developed a comprehensive approach to assisting us, which not only includes helping us identify and hire the best candidate, but also includes coaching and assistance to our organization during the critical on-boarding process. Cynthia is uniquely qualified to lead our search because of her extensive connections in the nonprofit sector, experience as both a CEO and consultant, and her reputation as one of the most impactful executive coaches in the field.

Gabriel Eckert, FASAE, CAE
President, FarmHouse International Fraternity