There exists much research regarding successful professional development (PD) programs that ultimately lead to improved student learning and achievement (e.g., Darling-Hammond, 1999). Yet, designing PD remains a complex and challenging endeavor; this body of work is usually refl ective in nature, often jumping into what was learned in an existing, already successful collaborative. Rarely is a specifi c road map with the basics of how-to provided. What is missing is a careful description of how partnerships are formed, particularly what is needed before beginning to work collaboratively toward the established goals in the PD program. Additionally, there is little work that outlines impediments to progress, as well as how partners overcome challenges; these stories would help others in their decision-making, both during program development and implementation.