Jodi Bell

Jodi Magaram, Esq.

Director of Personal Development

Jodi helps open dialogue for startups, teams, couples, and families by using council, a practice designed to foster deeper understanding and build connections through the sharing of life experiences.

Jodi first experienced council when her daughters were attending Open Charter, a public elementary school in Los Angeles. Jodi was moved by the way the council practice enabled her to understand and appreciate both others and herself in a new way. Inspired, she began learning to facilitate councils through workshops at The Ojai Foundation, and ultimately became a Certified Council Trainer in 2009. She has brought the practice to public and private schools, workplaces, and prisons, leading trainings to enable others to bring council into their workplaces, schools and communities.

Jodi’s education includes an A.B. in Political Science (magna cum laude) from Brown University and a law degree with distinction from Stanford University. A California-native, Jodi enjoys speed walking in the hills, backpacking in the Sierras, getting creative in the kitchen, and practicing yoga.


Why are you here?

Making investment decisions and formulating a financial plan requires that we take stock of our values and goals. Those values and goals are heavily influenced by our own relationship with money, our personal experiences with money, and the lessons we have learned from those experiences.  I hope to encourage your understanding your own story, your own reasons for the attitudes you hold about money so that you can better evaluate the choices you are making.  If you are part of a couple, I facilitate sharing with each other and understanding the other’s relationship to money. When conflicts arise, you will understand where your partner is coming from, and your partner will better understand you. Through open communication, you will chart a path that meets both of your needs.

What quality of yours makes you best suited for what you do?

I am truly curious about people and their stories and what makes us all the way we are.  I know how to trigger thoughtful exploration and expression of ideas and attitudes.  I strive to be a good listener.

What makes you great at your job?

I have been doing this type of work for 13 years now, learning how to facilitate dialogue in schools, workplaces, private homes and even prisons. I am dedicated to creating growthful and moving experiences for our clients and for our team.

What are you trying to do better?

I’ve been told I can come off a little rough around the edges. Sometimes I’m too direct, or maybe just not tactful enough. It’s my delivery, apparently.  So I’m working on it.  I’m still on step one — the compliment sandwich.

What keeps you up at night, during the week?

Pretty much nothing prevents me from sleeping unless I’m really stressed out or super excited about something, which is only very occasionally. I remember staying up all night excited about going to summer camp the next morning as a kid. On the side of stress, it’s replaying personal conflicts.

What gets you up in the morning, on the weekends?

Sunrise pretty much gets me up most days, whether on the weekends or not.  I’m a morning person. I do like to laze a bit more in the mornings on weekends, and not necessarily get a morning workout like I would on a weekday.

What makes you proud about GDP, inc.?

We are truly a team, and we all feel valued and appreciated for what we bring to the table.  We work together, and we also know each other, care about each other and like each other.  And we like our clients too.  A lot.  It feels like family.

What do you think makes customers happy?

All people want to feel like someone’s listening and understands.  Money can be stressful and can bring up strong feelings. I strive to help clients develop empathy for themselves and for their partners to better handle those vicissitudes when they arise… as they will, from time to time.

What personal accomplishments are you most proud of?

I spent a weekend working in a high-security prison with a group of 20 men, facilitating their sharing of stories with each other about their lives, their goals, and their dreams. Seeing how moved and energized they were about deeply connecting with others was truly uplifting.  Besides that, I take great pride in being a mom whose kids feel loved and understood, and who talk to me about things I would never have talked to my parents about.  Maybe the times are changing, but I like to believe some of that is attributable to how I try to be authentic with them and listen to them nonjudgmentally.

What’s one thing we should know about you?

I love spending time in nature, backpacking and pushing my limits physically.  I would love to take any client backpacking.  I’m a great cook too.  Oh, that’s two things.