Tag Archive for: Journey

Doing Life? How One Woman Saved NY State $1 Billion

Crime Cutting

Doing Life?

How One Woman Saved NY State $1 Billion

“As of 2008, there were 2.3 Million in prisons in the United States, that is one in each 100 people in the United States. With just 5% of the word’s population, the US has the highest incarcerated population in the world. I have worked in this system since 1973, focused on one intention: to transform prisons from places of punishment to places of healing. Throughout my journey, I  have been blessed to learn from the best, to study and apply the most effective strategies to my work.

Interpersonal ResponsibilityWhen I attended Money & You® for the first time in 1982, with 66 of my core staff at the time, I experienced that it encompassed the best of all that I had learned so far. After more than 27 years of continuing to work with DC Cordova and these distinctions, M&Y remains the best of phenomenal opportunities I have had.

In three-and-a-half days, Money & You® offers an elegant, efficient and highly-effective process that works in any environment. It is also a portal to so many other resources, including The Quantum Learning Network of Bobbi DePorter, the co-creator and one of DC’s original partners in this work.

Money & You® was the first step into an area rich with opportunities and world-class leaders  who have greatly enriched my life, and that of the more than 6,000 staff and more than 40,000 graduates of the Total Learning Environments I created and implemented in prisons.  By 2004, with 35,000 graduates, the Shock Incarceration program had saved the State of New York more than $1.18 Billion, to say nothing of the families and children affected by their parent’s success.

Dr. Cherie  Clark
President/Co-founder Doing Life® International Inc.

Cherie Clark

For more on Dr. Clark’s extraordinary results, see her profile below


Dr. Cheryl L. Clark
As well as President and co-founder of DOING LIFE!® International Inc., Cherie Clark is also the Director of Shock Incarceration and the Willard Drug Treatment Campus (DTC) for the New York State Department of Correctional Services (NYS DOCS).

Shock Incarceration is internationally recognized as the leading program of its type in the world. In 2004, research documented more than $1 billion in cost savings to the taxpayers of New York State for the institutional phase alone.

Dr. Clark has worked in human services since 1966, first in Social Services then Juvenile Justice. She started in Criminal Justice in 1974, where after other management positions, she researched, designed and implemented a Total Learning Environment™ (TLE™) for the NYS DOCS, the Network Program.

In 1985, Dr. Clark was appointed Director of Staff Development for the NYS Division of Parole, to assist with the implementation of the Division’s Regional management system. She developed supervisory and Management Training Programs for the Division, in addition to streamlining and improving training programs for all levels of Parole staff. She considers one of her most significant accomplishments for that agency the design and implementation of the first Street Survival course for Parole Officers.

Dr. Clark returned to DOCS in 1987 to develop the Shock Incarceration program and has directed this initiative since its inception. Because of the outstanding, unprecedented success of Shock, in 1995 Dr. Clark was asked to design the Willard DTC and expand Shock staff training to include all staff of the DTC. The Willard DTC is unique as a stand-alone correctional Drug Treatment Campus. Based in both military and Network community models, Shock Incarceration and the DTC have an equal emphasis on self-discipline, treatment and life skills education.

Dr. Clark earned a Ph.D. in the School of Health and Human Services at Columbia Commonwealth University and holds a Master’s Degree in Educational Psychology from the College of St. Rose in Albany, NY. She has studied accelerated learning and transformation technologies for more than 30 years. Her doctoral dissertation, 12° Of Freedom: Synergetics and the 12 Steps to Recovery , is considered a ground-breaking work in the field of substance abuse treatment. It includes a comprehensive overview of the model she named Social Synergetics™, offering an innovative, fully integrated model for recovery from addictions.

In 1990, Dr. Clark was awarded the Governor’s Productivity Award for outstanding contributions to State Government. In 1995, the American Correctional Association acknowledged her for her outstanding contributions to corrections, as “Best in the Business”. Dr. Clark is internationally recognized as a leader in her field and an expert in substance abuse treatment. She is the principal author of DOING LIFE! A Life Skills Program for Recovery From Addictions® and SMART Choices: A Guide for Making Choices That Work .

The WorldGAMES Story: How 15 Minutes Changed My Life

World Success Story

The WorldGAMES Story


DC Cordova

In 1992, after years of success, I was in a real mess. A good friend encouraged me to attend a training program that was to literally change my life. Up until then training programs to me had been boring or ineffective. Even with the most engaging presenter, I had found that the information just did not stick. I would leave the program with my notes which I then filed unread and, hopefully, a desire to put at least 5 things into action. By next morning I could possibly remember one of them, which I may or may not have used.

My friend told me that this program would be different, and it was! It introduced me to the power of games, what I now know as experiential learning. One fun 15 minute game just blew me away. It showed me clearly why I was in my mess and what I needed to do to change it. Just 15 minutes to solve a problem I had struggled with for more than 2 years!

A day or two later and wham! A second fun, engaging game provided another one of those light-bulb-in-the-head experiences. I subsequently changed my behaviour, my results and, not surprisingly, my beliefs about training.

The program (Money & You®) that began my journey was not all fun and games. There were huge chunks of data interspersed with relevant games and exercises. I found that my data retention soared. 17 years on, I can still remember most of the key points, but it was the games that were the difference that made the difference.

I started to think about the purpose of training. In a nutshell, it must be to encourage a change of behaviour. After all, if people are already doing things the most effective way, why would you train them? I already knew that bored people learn very little, very slowly. I knew that good training games and exercises are fun, engaging and encourage learning. What I did not know is whether games, exercises and simulations could be used as the primary building blocks to create highly effective training programs.

WorldGAMES began as an experiment to see if they could.

Very soon two things became obvious. On the positive side, initial results were excellent. The learning processes WorldGAMES created were fun, active and very effective in terms of learning outcomes and retention. The bad news was that there were very few games around that had learning outcomes relevant to the workplace. That was the start of our games designing process, the task of creating games that were fun, simple and safe yet are powerful business metaphors.

The rest, as they say, is history. WorldGAMES now has over 800 games, exercises, simulations, management tools and programs that are all workplace relevant and have been played in some 44 countries that we know about. Participants in our programs are in action for themselves about 95% of the time and they love it.

So, I am sure, will you.

John Radclyffe, founder and Managing Director, WorldGAMES Pty Ltd

Creative Commons License photo credit: felipesp