Deborah McLaren – Community and Sustainable Tourism Network Weaver

Identify and Strengthen Your Local Flavor



Creating flourishing places generate additional innovation and economic activity that broadly benefits the entire community.


Deborah McLaren

(1) 651-983-9880 (US)

Twitter @GetLocalFlavor

Skype: deborahmclaren


Deborah McLaren is a global leader in sustainable tourism, weaving economic and community networks using Network Weaving methodology and a Local Flavor sustainable community/regional model. Find out more about Deborah, Local Flavor and how to help your community:

*The Local Flavor team provide a wide range of skills and services. Check our website for more information.



• Facilitator Services

Identifying and Packaging Your Local Flavor: Strategies for leveraging the arts, local food, culture, heritage, nature and travel for economic development

• Network Weaving: strategic and effective strategies for creating change

* Weaving our Future: An Innovative, Integrated Community Model

* The Value of Partnerships and Innovative Ways to Spark Them

* Nurturing Network Innovation

* Arts, Tourism and Economic Development

* Local Food in Non-Food Places and Events

*Creating Trails: Moving People Through History, Heritage, Wildlife Viewing, Food Products (wine, breweries) and self-guided routes

* Inter-Generational Connections Between Community Founders and New  Entrepreneurs

* Creating a Street Level Art Zone

* Connecting With Our Land and Heritage

* Utilizing Our Stories

* Options for Long-Term Preservation

*  Creating a Common Center

• Check the Local Flavor Booklets (below) for additional workshop topics




A directory of local and independent businesses, nonprofit organizations, events and festivals in Minnesota and Wisconsin.

Click here to become a member of Local Flavor

Free online toolbox available to Marketing Level Local Flavor members ($75 annual membership) includes materials from Local Flavor and other businesses and organizations around the world.

Click here for Local Flavor On-Line Resources



How To Booklets (coming soon) Step-by-step guides with plans, activities and easy to use forms (8 page: $12.00 each)

Arts, Tourism and Economic Development

Creating A Regional Network



For more than 20 years Deborah McLaren has been a leader in sustainable tourism around the world – sharing innovative, community-based economic experiences¬ and strategies through her writing (books, magazines), interviews, and other media, as well as appearing on panels, presentations and as a keynote speaker.

Deborah has extensive international experience working with tribal and rural communities in areas as diverse as Bhutan, the Amazon and the Yukon. After receiving an M.A. in Social Ecology from Goddard College (globalization and sustainable tourism) she worked on developing sustainable tourism strategies in the northern Indian Himalayan state of Sikkim as an Asian Foundation Fellow. She was the founder and director of two international sustainable tourism organizations, a consultant for the United Nations Development Program, the coordinator of the first International Forum on Indigenous Tourism in Oaxaca, Mexico and has helped established volunteer programs in the US and rural India.

More recently she’s focused her energy in the US Midwest coordinating a Journeys with First Nations route at White Earth Reservation, an arts community network in St. Paul and Value-Added Community Development and agritourism programs in rural areas.

After participating in the Association for Economic Opportunity’s Regional Flavor cluster strategies around the country she was inspired to replicate the program in the Midwest and started Local Flavor. Recently she was part of a five-month intensive practicum on Network Weaving network consulting led by June Holley and Kristin Johnstad.

 Deborah is currently weaving economic and community networks using Network Weaving tools and skills and providing Local Flavor community development and sustainable tourism consultant services.



• One-hour consultation includes review of your materials and half an hour phone or internet call with feedback and suggestions for innovative activities/next steps. Convenient, professional one-on-one response can assist you in moving projects and ideas forward. $150 for members of Local Flavor/$200 for non-members. Additional written report $50.

• Half-day consultation includes review of your materials, on-site visit to your office or community with feedback and suggestions for innovative activities/next steps. Helpful when two or more people are involved, and a learning tour of your business or community are necessary for moving your projects and ideas forward. $300 for members of Local Flavor/$400 for non-members. Additional written report $50. Travel expenses extra.

• Full-day consultation includes review of your materials, on-site meetings and tour of your business and/or community, a power point presentation includes an overview of Local Flavor strategies and numerous successful models of Local Flavor events and activities. $600 for members of Local Flavor/$800 for non-members. Additional written report $50. Travel expenses extra.

• Project development and management