We see it nearly every week in the news. A student athlete makes a racially-charged comment on social media. A university deals with a racial incident on campus. A coach is accused of saying something "racist." Will you know what to do when it happens on your team?
Coaches and student athletes are on the front lines. Today's tense social environments challenge us to develop racially-aware coaches and student athletes who are prepared to thrive in our racially diverse world.
Give them the tools they need.
MELD works directly with NCAA athletic departments to develop a training plan to create an environment for student athletes to succeed. For four decades, we have trained and coached students and faculty to be racial reconcilers on their campuses.
We start with assessment-driven training packages that help coaching staffs and teams to understand their own ethnic identity better, how to relate effectively with those of other ethnicities and how to grow in their cultural intelligence.
Following the foundational training, we are available to consult with the Athletic Director (or Associate AD who handles diversity and inclusion) to determine the best next steps for your coaches and athletes.
On campus, certified MELD trainers build upon the foundational training to equip coaches and student athletes to sharpen their cross-cultural and multi-ethnic leadership skills.
Each of us is unique. We are shaped by our family origins and histories. We are further shaped by our relationships, education and good and bad experiences. What makes us unique--even our differences--is reason to celebrate.
Yet, often our differences divide us.
People default to sameness and safe relationships. Differences in skin tone, culture, upbringing and values put us on edge. What was meant to be celebrated divides us. But change is possible.
Any team through recognizing and maximizing each teammate's uniqueness can be transformed into a high performance team.
Today's coaches and student athletes need tools to thrive in our racially diverse world.
MELD can give you tools for success.
We have quality training videos for you to watch, absorb and circulate. Use them to educate and train your staff and athletes. You can find these videos in our Video section below! We will add new videos and other resources regularly.
Low cost, high-reward Foundational Training packages are designed to begin transforming coaches staffs and teams. These training packages include assessments and consulting for individuals and groups. Contact us for more information on upcoming training.
If you and your team of coaches and athletes are looking for more individualized training and consulting, arrange a consultation with Paul to develop an on-site training event that will maximize transformational results. Contact MELD today to speak with Paul.
Paul Tokunaga, Founder and President of MELD, LLC, brings 40+ years of hands-on multi-ethnic leadership development training, coaching and consulting.
Paul is a third-generation Japanese American from San Jose, California. He was an undergraduate student at California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo where he earned a B.S. of Journalism. He was awarded the C.G. Young Award by the university president as the outstanding graduate in his class. Paul went on to earn a Masters of Christian Studies at New College Berkeley.
Paul has worked for 40+ years with organizations based throughout the United States that have diversity needs. His biggest assignments have come from InterVarsity Christian Fellowship, for whom he has served since 1973 in a variety of leadership and management roles, including National Asian American Ministry Coordinator for 14 years.
Most recently he has been the Vice-President, Director of Strategic Ministries, for nine years. InterVarsity is a $100 million non-profit, employing 1600 throughout the United States.
Paul is a co-author of two multi-ethnic leadership books as well as the author of Invitation to Lead: Guidance for Emerging Asian American Leaders, now in its 9th printing.
Paul is a sought-after speaker to audiences of 18 to 18,000 on subjects of multi-ethnicity, diversity in the workplace, and developing high potential leaders.
THE DANIEL PROJECT
He was the lead creator of InterVarsity's Daniel Project, Prospective Senior Leaders Cohort, two 15-month intensive leadership programs to prepare potential senior leaders. Since 2003, 12 Daniel Project cohorts have been run with 137 mid-level managers trained. Well over half of these are ethnic minorities and women. Of the fourteen most recent internal vice-presidents appointed, twelve were participants in the Prospective Senior Leaders Cohorts.
Paul was also the lead creator for InterVarsity's Managing and Leading Ethnic Diversity, a 3-day course that is now required training for all in-coming managers. Over 250 middle and senior managers have gone through the course in the past three years.
Paul is a Certified Facilitator in Cultural Intelligence (CQ) and Unconscious Bias by the Cultural Intelligence Center and was certified as a conflict mediator by the Conflict Resolution Academy.
He and his wife Margaret recently celebrated their 41st anniversary. They have an adult son, Sam. They all reside in Atlanta.
Paul recently retired after 19 seasons playing for the Atlanta Astros in Atlanta's "baseball for old guys" league.
“Paul Tokunaga’s MELD workshops begin by soliciting participants’ cultural competencies—meeting them where they are at—then respectfully challenges them to think more deeply. His approach is highly interactive, keeping workshop participants moving in our heads and around the physical space of the room. Our own experiences drive the workshop exercises so nobody feels like an outsider; everybody’s opinions and feelings matter as groundwork for necessary discussions on difficult topics and for the best of outcomes.”
Dr. Monica Chiu, University of New Hampshire’s Interim Associate Vice-President for Community, Equity and Diversity
“From many years working with NCAA Division I Athletic Departments across the country, I know there is a definite need for the valuable training that Paul Tokunaga provides. I recommend that athletic administrators and coaches seek his genuine insights and wise counsel to establish stronger communications and relationships within their programs."
Bill Carr, Former Athletic Director- University of Houston and University of Florida
President & Founder-CarrSports Consulting, LLC
“In my four years as a Division 1 athlete, I can look back and think of numerous times where training from Paul and MELD would have been helpful. As I think about my team, I now realize the different backgrounds, cultures, and ethnicities that were present and how these all played a larger role in how we worked together as a team. MELD training could have helped me have the conversations needed with teammates to make them feel more understood and seen. I am thankful the next generation of college athletes can benefit from Paul and MELD. Its well worth the investment!”
Colleen Caskey, Colonial Athletic Association Volleyball Player of the Year, University of Delaware Hall of Fame
“As a former D1A Athletic Director, I am very excited about the positive contributions Paul Tokunaga’s MELD program can make to NCAA athletic organizations. My wife Susan and I have been friends with Paul and his wife Margaret for 35 years. We have followed his career closely over the years. His dedication to investing in students and faculty of all ethnicities has continued to this day. Among his peers, he is widely regarded as one of the finest leadership development trainers in the country.”
Thom Park, Ph.D., Former Division 1A Athletic Director and Football Coach
46 year Member, American Football
“I’ve been around the world playing basketball and I’ve gotten to experience a lot of different cultures. Nothing has taught me more about how to understand, appreciate and interact well with people from other cultures than what I learned through Paul at MELD. Simply put, I didn’t know what I didn’t know, until he taught it to me. In a short period of time, Paul taught me more about how to lead, love and engage with people from different cultures than I ever picked up in 3 years of traveling.
Ben Sturgill, Former Division I and Professional Basketball Player
"Paul Tokunaga has decades of experience providing both multiethnic training and racial reconciliation consulting. Simply put: he is extraordinary. Linear and intuitive, he is adept up-front and along-side. I couldn't recommend him more highly."
Alec Hill, President Emeritus, InterVarsity Christian Fellowship/USA
"Paul has a unique skill and sensitivity in creating meaningful programs and products that match organizational objectives and advance critical learning related to diversity, inclusion and ethical leadership."
Steven Rivelis, CEO, Campaign Consultation, Inc., Entrepreneurs for Social Change
"I've watched Paul skillfully facilitate small and large audiences for 15 years, and he has the uncanny ability to convey his message with genuine care and good humor to everyone present. He is a wise advisor who speaks from a place of authenticity. Your team will benefit greatly by having him by your side as you navigate the diversity & inclusion journey in your athletic department!"
Jane Hyun, Global leadership consultant and coach, Author
of Breaking the Bamboo Ceiling and co-author, Flex, The New Playbook for Managing Across Differences