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 [...]

January 28th, 2021|Organizer Spotlights|

Academy 2020 Report

In March 2020, the WiLD Project adapted to the global pandemic by moving our signature organizing workshop online. Within a moment of great uncertainty, we saw an opportunity to come together and inspire leadership. As shown in this evaluation report, the results were promising.

November 11th, 2020|WiLD News|

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 [...]

October 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 [...]

October 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 [...]

October 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. [...]

October 7th, 2020|Organizer Spotlights|


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