There are natural leaders who emerge in every community. It’s the residents who pull together community conversations to solve problems, rally neighbors for an annual event to support a local nonprofit, bring thoughtful questions and suggestions to quarterly board meetings, and set up talks from City officials to bring accurate information to their neighborhood.

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alumni serving community leadership roles.


raised for children in foster care.


commemorative bricks sold, raising $5k+ for local charities.

We know these innate leaders are incredible assets, so our Cohere team has crafted engagement programs that leverage their passion and drive in order to foster long-term stewardship and connection. The result is sustainable communities steeped in authentic decision-making, meaningful results, and a strong sense of place and pride.

In 2015, during the early days of Eastmark, a group of residents signed on for a 10-month journey to enhance their own leadership potential and deepen their knowledge of both Eastmark and the greater region. Since then, 100+ residents have completed the signature leadership series facilitated by our onsite Community Life staff, under the purview of the Eastmark Assembly.

Eastmark Leadership focuses on developing community leadership, building relationships with fellow neighbors, gaining a deeper understanding of the Eastmark vision and plan, learning about economic development strategies in the local area, and exploring other current issues that impact Eastmark, the region, and the state. It also establishes a strong foundation and tradition for resident leadership now and into the future.

“The program is not only a beautiful way to get residents involved, but it’s also a vehicle toward community sustainability,” says Suzanne Walden-Wells, Cohere chief engagement officer.

“For aspirational master plan developers, a big concern is that they’re going to put their heart and soul into creating this special place, and when they’re ready to turn over the keys to the kingdom, some of the things they had worked so hard to achieve could get dismantled. That’s why we felt information and an immersion into the pillars of the community, the vision, the ‘why’ behind the decisions, plus the opportunity to develop deep relationships, were key to upholding the developer’s dream for the community,” says Suzanne.

Each year interested residents (and those we may have given a nudge to) are invited to attend an information session and then officially apply to the program.

“When you start a community, it doesn’t take long to identify the natural leaders and those who are passionate about the place they live,” says Suzanne.

Participants attend interactive monthly sessions that include Eastmark Leadership-specific community tours, networking opportunities, guest speakers, and workshops themed around topics like Environmental Mindfulness and Stewardship, Regional Assets and Economic Development, Personal and Community Values, and Creating a Sense of Place. The resident leaders experience points of pride in their community and are introduced to leaders in a variety of public, non-profit, education, and business arenas.

A key component to the leadership program is the class project where resident leaders work collectively to make a meaningful, lasting impact in the community. For example:

  • Leadership members worked collectively on a project to foster organic, resident-led park experiences by raising funds to purchase a Party Trailer, for complimentary use by the Eastmark community, fully stocked with everything needed to let the good times roll—lawn games, party supplies, a canopy, folding tables and chairs—everything but the food.
  • As an initiative to support local Veterans, Eastmark Leadership classmates created a program to sell personalized pavers to be installed at a neighborhood park, at the base of a flagpole proudly flying the American flag. The park space was officially dedicated during a special Veterans Day ceremony as a place to gather and honor all current and former service members who hold a special place in the hearts of Eastmark residents. Paver proceeds were then directed to nearby organizations offering Veteran support services.
  • Eastmark Leadership worked collectively to establish a public-private partnership with the City of Mesa and the Mesa Public Library to inspire young Mesa readers and increase access to books through the Little Free Libraries program. They started with raw materials and a simple set of instructions to build two Little Free Libraries (to be regularly stocked by the Library) that went out into local communities with low access to books.

While the leadership program requires an investment of time and talent, there is no cost to participate.

At program completion, participants are inducted as full-fledged members of Eastmark Leadership where they have opportunities to expand their leadership roles by serving as extensions of the Community Life team, co-facilitating future Eastmark Leadership classes, taking on roles in local non-profits and spearheading key community projects, events, and philanthropic campaigns, serving on the community’s Boards of Directors, and being a trusted resource for neighborhood information.

“We know the information we’re providing is important, but it’s also a deeply personal experience for many people,” says Suzanne. “There are residents who’ve gone through the program and said it changed their lives.”

Our signature leadership programs inspire residents to uphold the values of service, collaboration, civility, and accountability while fostering a welcoming and connected community with purpose. The benefit is a well-equipped corps of leaders who have the desire and drive to maintain the community’s original vision for years to come.


Great places don’t happen by accident.  Great places are the result of a thoughtful vision that is cared for and nurtured as the community matures.  Based on a long history of design excellence and a deep understanding of how communities evolve, Cohere is committed to preserving and enhancing the built environment of the communities it manages with the objective that each community gets better with time.

JT Elbracht

Elbracht+Company, LLC


Rarely do you meet a collaborator who shares the dream and then turns it into a reality. The Cohere Team does just that. From the early discovery of “localness” of place to the universals of enlightened community management, the Cohere team listens, explores, questions, and creates.

Sandra Kulli

Kulli Marketing


Cohere has been a great partner in the management of our associations at McWhinney. While they are more than adept at traditional association management, the secret sauce lies in their unique ability to promote community engagement through creative events and programming.

Kyle Harris

Sr. Vice President Community Development
Baseline General Manager


When executed well, a strong sense of Community is a significant competitive advantage in the master planned community business.  But, when executed with thoughtful planning followed by intentional action, a sense of Community is the legacy of great development.

Brad Chelton

President, Texas
Land & Housing Development
Brookfield Properties Development


The Cohere team are master creators and connectors of people, places and everlasting memories that transform real estate to the forever fabric of our lives.

Denise Resnik

First Place AZ & DRA Collective


Cohere's unique approach to community building created a vibe and energy that attracted homebuyers and was well received by residents. They cemented Eastmark amongst the top best-selling and best-living communities in the nation. Given Cohere’s success with Eastmark, we have engaged at two of our new master planned communities to provide the community building. We really appreciate and value what Cohere brings to our projects.

Dea McDonald

President, Arizona
Land & Housing Development
Brookfield Properties Development


I’m a big believer in the community-building model that Cohere has perfected. Grounded in the full spirit of community and enriching people’s lives, this unique, collaborative approach was key in distinguishing and growing the value of communities developed by DMB Associates during my tenure there.

Charley Freericks

Catellus Development Corp.


Cohere’s innovative approach to engagement, connectivity and partnerships helped shape Eastmark’s unique culture and establish its roots. Now, 10 years later over 18,000 residents maintain this mindset and continue to grow our Legacy community. At Brookfield, we strive to create legacy master-planned communities where people lead richer, more connected & fulfilling lives that add value to the larger community. With Cohere’s partnership and expertise, we believe that this is exactly what we have achieved at Eastmark.

Eric Tune

Sr. Vice President
Land & Housing Development
Brookfield Properties Development