Chris Hambuch-Boyle: Organizer Spotlight

This week's organizer spotlight features Chris Hambuch-Boyle of the Wisconsin Public Education Network (WPEN): 1) What did you learn from the challenges of being an organizer in 2020? It was a year of connecting to a growing team of organizers at WPEN, who remain committed to ensuring that all children and staff in Wisconsin Public Schools get what they need to thrive. We engaged with all candidates running for the legislature in Northwest WI, asking questions about their commitment and policy asks for public schools. Sharing this information with their constituents helps educate all on the complexities and long term [...]

2021-02-11T11:09:11-06:00February 8th, 2021|Organizer Spotlights|

David Carlson: Organizer Spotlight

This week's organizer spotlight features David Carlson of the ACLU of Wisconsin's Campaign for Smart Justice: 1) What did you learn from the challenges of being an organizer in 2020? Construct a strategy, revise as you go, but stick to your plan. 2020 presented a barrage of issues, that if we had tried to tackle them all, we would have accomplished nothing. We remained focused, and came out of the year with some tangible victories that we are currently building upon! 2) What sustains you? Where do you get the energy to keep going with the work? What sustains me [...]

2021-01-28T08:39:30-06:00January 28th, 2021|Organizer Spotlights|

Carlene Bechen: Organizer Spotlight

This week's organizer spotlight features Carlene Bechen of the Wisconsin Fair Maps Coalition: 1) What have you learned from organizing "fails?" Over the course of my varied career, I've made more mistakes than I can count. I don’t consider them "fails," though, because each one has enlightened my next steps and influenced my path. Perhaps the most important lesson I’ve learned is to communicate as fully and honestly as possible with the people I am working alongside, and to seek their input and ideas regarding the best path to follow. Withholding information creates power dynamics that impact trust and disempower [...]

2020-10-26T14:46:31-05:00October 28th, 2020|Organizer Spotlights|

Valeria Cerda: Organizer Spotlight

This week's organizer spotlight features Valeria Cerda, Civic Engagement Director at Wisconsin Voices: 1) What have you learned from organizing "fails?" I remember when I was a fairly new organizer and having trouble setting boundaries between work and my personal life. The result was not "producing enough" at work. Now looking back, I realize how I was not able to offer myself any grace and how I was conditioned to think that my value is tied to how much I can produce—which is not true. I had really low self-esteem as a person and organizer, and didn't have the wisdom [...]

2020-10-21T09:27:26-05:00October 20th, 2020|Organizer Spotlights|

Melissa Winker & Tom Palzewicz: Organizer Spotlight

This week's organizer spotlight features Melissa Winker (candidate for State Assembly District 38) and Tom Palzewicz (candidate for the 5th Congressional District): 1) What have you learned from organizing "fails?" Melissa: Being a candidate requires an enormous personal commitment of time and self-reflection. I have an amazing campaign cabinet, and my leadership “fail” surfaced earlier this year, when it was brought to my attention that I was not living up to the standard of appreciating the needs of others. We held a special check-in to revisit expectations and emerged with fresh commitments to the hard work ahead. I learned again [...]

2020-10-13T18:52:05-05:00October 14th, 2020|Organizer Spotlights|

Shawnu Ksicinski & Cheyenne Otto-Defoe: Organizer Spotlight

This week's organizer spotlight features Shawnu Ksicinski and Cheyenne Otto-Defoe of Progress North: 1) What have you learned from organizing "fails?" Shawnu: In this work, we fail as much as we succeed, and I sometimes learn more from my fails than I do from the wins. I can think of a number of times I experienced this, but the lesson overall is to move at the pace of relationships. Our work always seems to move at warp speed and, during a local issue campaign, I remember not taking the time to learn people's personal stories and connection to the issue. [...]

2020-10-07T15:43:15-05:00October 7th, 2020|Organizer Spotlights|

Chia Lor & Gunther Melander: Organizer Spotlight

This week's organizer spotlight features Chia Lor and Gunther Melander, both staff members of Vote Mob: 1) What have you learned from organizing "fails?" Chia: In my organizing/leadership journey, there was a time I was under the assumption that I needed to know everything and have clarity on every single decision that was made. This made me not have enough faith in others and struggle with imposter syndrome. For example, when I was working on our campaign, “Dare to Divest,” I struggled with having a clear vision for steps as a team. However, I was able to push through that [...]

2020-09-28T13:54:46-05:00September 30th, 2020|Organizer Spotlights|

Markasa Tucker: Organizer Spotlight

This week's organizer spotlight features Markasa Tucker, Director of The African-American Roundtable (AART) and Co-Founder of LiberateMKE: 1) What have you learned from organizing "fails?" Taking advice that was not culturally sound and actually leaning into and applying it to a campaign. It caused my organizer to walk away. I learned I need to trust myself and my own and my people's experiences and apply that to my work. I may not know it all, but what I do know is no one knows my experience, my need or the impact of it all and that is what should always [...]

2020-09-21T14:56:44-05:00September 23rd, 2020|Organizer Spotlights|

Heather DuBois Bourenane: Organizer Spotlight

We are excited to kick off our weekly organizer spotlight series with Heather DuBois Bourenane, Executive Director of the Wisconsin Public Education Network (WPEN): 1) What have you learned from organizing "fails?" Credit: Joe Brusky One thing I've learned from WiLD trainings and the amazing organizers I've met through WiLD is how to appreciate and evaluate the "small wins" and identify organizing victories even in the face of "political" defeats. Constantly reflecting on how we can "learn forward" to be better leaders helps keep the focus on the community we build through our organizing and the importance of [...]

2020-09-16T09:13:22-05:00September 14th, 2020|Organizer Spotlights|

Kriss Marion: Meant to Shine Video

“I just decided I would become one of those people that would stand up for water myself... I think someone needs to speak for the water and for the land, and for the people of southwest Wisconsin.” —Kriss Marion (Blanchardville, WI) Meant to Shine is an ongoing video series featuring inspiring leaders from around Wisconsin. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kkSv2S21Bj0

2021-06-11T10:10:27-05:00July 11th, 2019|Organizer Spotlights|
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