The Dent Way: Dent Guidelines And Values


People don’t simply attend Dent. They ARE Dent. We are an energizing, diverse, challenging, and supportive community. This community actively upholds Dent’s values of equal respect, inclusion, and safety for all of its members. All Dent participants both foster and benefit from our unique way of gathering and learning together.

If at any point you experience anything that deviates from our values or puts anyone in our community at risk:

  • If you feel safe and able: call out the behavior or activity. State that Dent values are at risk and give those involved a chance to course correct.
  • If you are not comfortable or able, immediately share your concern with a Dent Advocate or anyone on the Dent leadership team. They will assist you in activating our escalation path.

If you notice anything you feel deviates from Dent’s values or puts anyone in our community at risk, check with that person to find out if they are uncomfortable. If you are clear that the situation needs attention, escalate to a Dent Advocate.

Actions that compromise Dent values are uncommon. Help keep them so by reading and understanding these guidelines and committing to upholding them – and helping others do the same – as you make a positive Dent in the universe.


Dent is a community centered on creating empowering experiences and interactions for all participants. We lead with values and a commitment to ensuring that every Dent participant feels equally welcome and safe in all aspects of their Dent experience.

Our values are more than words. They’re the foundation of our gatherings, interactions, and growth. We actively champion and safeguard these values as a community. This document explains both the intent and impact of these values and how we uphold them across the Dent experience.

People don’t simply attend Dent. They ARE Dent.


At our core, we’re a community that seeks to create meaningful impact in the world – through our actions, and by supporting and encouraging others to reach for that goal.

We’re also a deliberately diverse ecosystem of people from varied experiences, beliefs, motivations, backgrounds, identities, and aspirations, all coming together to learn from and support one another.

Safety ≠ Comfort

Dent may not always be comfortable: we’re all about getting out of our comfort zones. That’s how we grow. But we are SAFE. At Dent, you can ask hard questions. You can speak your truth with people who may not have considered it before. You can be vulnerable, saying “This is the first time I’ve considered something like this.” As Dent participant Everett Harper shared in his 2017 talk, you can move to your edge and rethink your center, and leave Dent being stronger for it.


The Dent experience depends upon all participants feeling psychologically and physically safe with every other person at Dent. At the core of psychological safety is respect: the baseline for every interaction between Dent participants.

“Respect,” however, can be different than “comfort.” At Dent we encourage respectful challenges to conventional thinking, growth-oriented conversations, and dialogs that stretch comfort zones. We respect the opinions and beliefs of others even when they differ from our own. We honor requests to end or step away from conversations and we contribute openly and generatively to the lively conversations that have become the Dent way.

Dent is not a place to misuse any form of power or privilege. To ensure this, we have zero tolerance words or behaviors that compromise the confidence and safety of any Denter or anyone involved in the Dent experience, including hospitality staff, servers, transportation providers, speakers, or any other person who interacts with the Dent community.

If any form of safety is at risk, Dent participants are empowered to act upon the escalation path detailed below and should call upon others in the Dent community to help ensure the safety of all is protected.
Maintaining psychological safety includes, but isn’t limited to:

  • Avoiding inappropriate or unwelcome sexual innuendo or invitations
  • Never using epithets or slurs associated with anyone’s idenity or personal attributes
  • Never engaging in verbal or physical intimidation, coercion, bullying, or any sort of pressure to participate in conversations or activities
  • Ensuring any physical contact is welcome and comfortable to all. When in doubt, ask first.
  • Welcoming all Denters fully to conversations and gatherings

Dent is only as good as the experience of every participant.

If at any point you feel that your physical or psychological safety, or that of any Dent community member or support provider, is being compromised by an interaction at Dent, turn to your Dent community and to the escalation procedures detailed below. Say you’re feeling unsafe and ask for help stepping away from the situation.

Get any support you need to follow the escalation path outlined below.

  • If you see someone else whose safety might be compromised, get clarity. Ask if they need anything. If they do, follow the escalation path.
  • All Dent participants will be given a 24/7 path for contacting Advocates. If you or someone else needs escalation support, don’t hesitate to contact an Advocate.

In the case of any emergency, please call 911 first and then immediately contact a Dent Advocate for guidance and support.


The enrichment we gain from the Dent experience grows from a diversity of voices and experiences that help us challenge our assumptions about the world and its potential.

Everyone at Dent is a full and equal participant in the learning and sharing that makes Dent unique. In fact, everyone at Dent is encouraged to expand their definition of community by connecting with curiosity, openness, and respect with Denters whose backgrounds and life experiences may differ from their own, including politically.

As a place where walls are broken down and lasting bridges are built, Dent has zero tolerance for any communication or action that leaves any member feeling disrespected, discriminated against, excluded, or treated differently because of their identity, or any attribute or characteristic. Anyone who witnesses or experiences any deviation from our value of full inclusion is expected to escalate their concern using the paths outlined below.


Dent Advocates are on hand to provide support at any point when a Dent value might be at risk of violation or compromise:

  • Ellen Leanse
  • Elisa Camahort Page
  • Everett Harper
  • Morgan Graham
  • Cheryl Contee
  • David Strehlow

Dent Advocates are empowered to actively protect Dent values and ensure safety for all community members. Decisions and actions can include directing anyone who does not fully uphold Dent values to modify their behavior and/or to take corrective action. Their role may also include escalating the situation to Dent leadership for decisions or external action.

    If you feel safe and able

  • Clearly state your perspective. Speak calmly and rationally to the person you feel is deviating from values. Be specific. If possible, try to course correct early: as soon as you notice anything out of keeping with Dent values.
  • Name the behavior or activity and how it affected you (or the other person).
  • State that Dent values are at risk and give them a chance to adjust or correct their actions.
  • If you see a Dent participant identify and course correct a potential compromise of values, offer them support and thanks. It can take courage to stand up to others in social settings. Solidarity and encouragement are always welcome.

    If you are not comfortable or able, immediately escalate your concern to a fellow Dent participant, a Dent Advocate, or anyone on the Dent leadership team. They will assist you in activating our escalation path.

  • Every Dent participant should see her or himself as a “first line” of support if a fellow Denter needs assistance
  • If you could not or were not comfortable resolving a situation you feel deviates from Dent values, please involve an Advocate as quickly as possible. Advocates are charged with responding promptly, offering next steps, and activating corrective procedures as needed.

Corrective procedures may involve interaction with a person trained in conflict resolution, prevention or correction or harassment, or other interventions. It may also involve dismissal from further Dent events and activities, at the sole discretion of Dent.

Both intent and impact matter at Dent. Use your time in our community to practice the mindsets and skills that position all around you to be empowered, confident, authentic, and able to contribute fully to the unique experience we create together at Dent.


___ I agree to uphold Dent’s values of respect, full inclusion, psychological safety, and non-harassment in all of my Dent interactions.
___ I will support fellow Denters in preserving their sense of physical and psychological safety by helping them get out of any situation that compromises Dent values and directing them toward our agreed-to escalation paths.