Narrative and Culture Strategist
Paul Costello is an educator and pioneer of organizational storytelling. As the head of the Center for Narrative Studies (Storywise), he trained hundreds of students on how to use stories to drive organizational results. Paul has led cultural transformation initiatives for NASA, Lockheed Martin, Department of Treasury, Catholic University and many others. He pioneered two narrative methods: Living Stories, a way for a community to surface and use their most powerful stories, and Narrative Room, a listening laboratory transforming how listeners hear stories.
Paul currently runs New Story Leadership, which brings together young leaders from Palestine and Israel to forge new stories of peace in the Middle East. He also directs the AmeriCorps Project CHANGE, Montgomery County Maryland’s original AmeriCorps program serving disadvantaged students.
Paul has received recognition from the United States 110th Congress and the Northern Ireland Assembly for his contribution to peace and for developing innovative narrative methodologies for reconciliation. His most recent book, The Presidential Plot, examines how stories shape American political and cultural life. Paul holds degrees in education, theology and history, and an MFA from American University.
Alicia and Paul met in 2001 through an organizational storytelling practitioner’s group in Washington, D.C. called the Golden Fleece. They have been working together on volunteer and client projects to champion narrative and forge purpose-driven organizations ever since. As leaders within the Golden Fleece, they helped organize annual international conferences on organizational narrative hosted at the Smithsonian Institute and George Mason University. These, as well as their writing and teaching work, were instrumental in mainstreaming narrative as a business practice.