"The means is dialogue, the end is learning, the purpose is peace." ~ Founder Dr. Jane Vella

GLP Founder, Dr. Jane Vella

Jane Vella was born in 1931 and raised in New York City, a daughter to an Italian immigrant family. Drawn to a vocation in the Catholic Church, Jane became a Maryknoll Sister in 1950.


Jane went to Tanzania in 1956 and spent her formative years in education teaching in various settings for the next 25 years. She taught at the Institute of Education at the University of Dar es Salaam from 1968 to 1973. Her teaching there brought her into contact with Sally Timmel and Ann Hope who developed the Training for Transformation program, Julius Nyerere, visionary and former President of Tanzania, and Paulo Freire, a legendary advocate for the democratization of learning in South America. Freire's work has inspired adult educators around the world.

In 1977 Jane left Maryknoll and returned to the US. She took up a program of study at The University of Massachusetts at Amherst where she completed her doctorate in Adult Education, doing research entitled Community Education for Development. She began teaching at North Carolina State University in Raleigh.

Jane started the Jubilee Popular Education Center in 1981. As a training entrepreneur, Jane took the best of her experience and study of formal and participatory education and developed a series of training courses. The principles and practices of Dialogue Education™ outlined then are the foundation of today's GLP courses. Many men and women all over the world learned how to use dialogue in the design and management of adult education programs. Over time Jane trained several graduates of her courses to become "Master Teachers," able to take on teaching her courses independently. In 1998 Jubilee became Global Learning Partners, Inc.


In early 2000 Jane Vella, at the age of 69, was committed to research and retirement. GLP had high quality, much sought-after courses and a community of Certified Teachers who were committed to Dialogue Education. That summer Peter Noteboom, already a GLP Master Teacher and Connie Kuipers (now also a "Certified Teacher" - after a change of terminology in 2002) assumed ownership of Global Learning Partners. Jane is honored as the Founder of GLP.

Jane Vella-Mentor

Jane has become a friend and mentor to hundreds of adult education practitioners around the world.

Jane Vella-Writer

Jane has been pleased to work with Jossey-Bass Publishers for all of her books.​  They are committed collaborators in moving Dialogue Education to the forefront of the adult education world.

Jane Vella-Retired and Loving it!

Jane is a budding pianist, an earnest kayaker (quiet lakes only!), an enthusiastic opera fan, an avid reader, and a relentless lover of her home. She welcomes students and friends to the back porch - any season of the year! Her current work is leisurely philosophizing on education, music, friendship and life. For this she used to keep a bi-monthly journal and now writes for GLP’s Speaking of Dialogue blog.

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