The Next Move
A People's Action podcast hosted by George Goehl
The Next Move is back for a second season, with eight new episodes starting May 11!
George digs in with some of the nation's best organizers to answer a simple - and sometimes complicated - question:
What is organizing?
Getting the answer right matters, especially right now. So George talks with eight master organizers about their path, defining moments in their development, and what we most need to teach and practice as organizers.
Some of these people are household names, like Alicia Garza, who well before cofounding Black Lives Matter was knocking on doors and building coalitions in the neighborhood.
Others may be new to you - all are amazing. People like Stephen Roberson, Organizing Director at Community Voices Heard in New York. Stephen is a fifty-year veteran of the craft, having started with the United Farm Workers when he was just nineteen. He's been organizing ever since.
George says he learned a lot from these conversations, and thinks you will, too. He hopes you will listen in, and join our conversation. Episodes will be available on Apple iTunes, Stitcher and everywhere you listen to podcasts.
Click on the player below to listen now!
Season Two Episode Guide
Throughout Season 2 of The Next Move, George talks with trailblazers about applying the craft of organizing to build the future we want.
These organizers are defining the vanguard of the field - innovators who are taking organizing fundamentals into uncharted territory. Each episode connects to one of eight key principles of organizing, exploring the history of the craft and how it lives and breathes in the work being done on the ground today.
This work - making the links between today's most innovative organizers with the fundamentals that inspire them - is part of an Organizing Revival he feels is essential to the future of our movement.
Episode 1: Get It Together with Alicia Garza
Progressives have been making major inroads over the past decade, but as we face the fight of our lives -- and for our lives -- how do we find the courage to lead? Alicia Garza, founder of the Black Futures Lab and co-founder of Black Lives Matter, points the way toward wielding power strategically by looking into differences and weaving alliances that upend expected patterns.
Alicia Garza (@aliciagarza) is founder and principal of the Black Futures Lab. She co-founded Black Lives Matter and serves as strategy and partnerships director for the National Domestic Workers Alliance. She also co-founded Supermajority, a new home for women’s activism. Her book, The Purpose of Power: How We Come Together, was published in October 2020. She podcasts as the host of Lady Don’t Take No and as co-host of Sunstorm.
- The tables get turned when Alicia interviews George on her podcast Lady Don’t Take No.
- Alicia’s book The Purpose of Power comes out on paperback this fall.
- Harriet’s Bookshop in Philly is one of Alicia’s favorite Black-owned book stores. Get your copy here.
- Check out what the Black Futures Lab is up to.
Episode 2: Help People Grow with Stephen Roberson
What will it take to depolarize our politics? At the heart of organizing is investing in deep relationships -- ones that help people develop their own power and potential. No one can describe what that takes like Stephen Roberson, Director of Organizing at Community Voices Heard. During this episode, he and George talk about the curiosity and compassion it takes to dismantle division at the most meaningful level: person to person.
Stephen Roberson came up through the United Farm Workers, where he worked directly with Cesar Chavez as well as Chavez’s own mentor, Fred Ross, Sr. During the late `80s, while working as Lead Organizer and National Staff with the Industrial Areas Foundation, he spearheaded the Nehemiah Project, which built 1000 homes with low-income families in Brownsville, Brooklyn. After seven years as Associate Director of Organizing with SEIU Local 32BJ’s New York headquarters, Stephen now directs organizing at Community Voices Heard.
- Want to get to know Stephen better? Learn more about all the amazing things he's done here.
- One of the biggest victories for organizing in the late 1980s and early 1990s was the Nehemiah Project, which built more than three thousand homes with and for low-income people in Brownsville, Brooklyn. Stephen was a lead organizer in that campaign. Learn more about Nehemiah and why it matters here.
- Stephen mentions Ed Chambers in our conversation. Here is a New Yorker piece about Chambers.
Episode 3: We Will Win with Jess Morales Rocketto
Huge rallies and worldwide platforms can be transformational, not only for the causes we believe in but for participants themselves. But how do we get there? For Jess Morales Rocketto, Civic Engagement Director at the National Domestic Workers Alliance and Executive Director of Care in Action, it starts with the fundamentals of community organizing: knowing organizing is about power, listening to people describe the material conditions of their lives, embracing that everyone has a role to play, and building a path so more people can get involved. Most of all, it’s about believing that we will win.
Jess Morales Rocketto is the Civic Engagement Director for the National Domestic Workers Alliance and the Executive Director of Care in Action, where she spearheads advocacy and electoral campaigns for the 2.5 million domestic workers in this country. She is Co-Chair of Families Belong Together, the campaign to end family separation and detention, and co-founder of Supermajority, a new home for women’s activism. She served as one of the leaders of the nationwide protests of the Trump Administration’s Muslim ban.
- Jess mentioned being moved by the work of Monseñor Oscar Romero, who was murdered in El Salvador by a right-wing death squad. Here’s a piece about Romero, who was named a saint by the Roman Catholic church in 2018.
- Jess was part of the delegation that went to protest family separations at the Ursula Detention Center in McAllen, Texas in 2018. Read more about that here.
- This Teen Vogue piece captures the magic of June 30th, 2018, with nearly 800 Families Belong Together events across the country to protest family separations.
- Here’s an interview with Jess on how she stays in the fight.
- Jess doesn’t write articles about organizing, but she does tweet about it!
Episode 4: Building Power with Doran Schrantz
Power: Who has it? How do you get it? How do you use it to move institutions? And what does it have to do with building politics? Doran Schrantz, Executive Director of ISAIAH and Faith in Minnesota, describes for George how building relationships is key to power-building. From supporting neighbors as they move from victimhood to agency to building teams and identifying alignment with powerful players within institutions, building power starts with knowing ourselves -- and being able to grow and learn as we keep building relationships with the people we organize.
Doran Schrantz is the Executive Director of ISAIAH and Faith in Minnesota. The two organizations are statewide, community-organizing vehicles for faith communities, barber shops and beauty shops, and childcare centers. They are vehicles for people of faith and values to create racial and economic justice in Minnesota, using a leadership development and grassroots organizing model.
- How can we reclaim public spaces for the public good? Doran tells us how in this video interview and article with Jonathan Heller for The Forge.
- Doran co-wrote this piece for the Stanford Social Innovation Review about building political bases with Michelle Oyakaw and Liz McKenna.
- You can learn about ISAIAH here and Faith In Minnesota here.
Episode 5: Asking Why with Caroline Murray
Change can be exhilarating, but it can also be hard. In this episode, Caroline Murray talks with George about asking the difficult, vulnerable questions so that we can relate meaningfully to those with whom we organize. Speaking from decades of experience - as a leader in the New Economy movement and former Executive Director of the Alliance to Develop Power - Caroline describes why “why” is the key to being brave together.
Caroline Murray is Principal and Owner of Innovative Organizing, where she brings strategies to movement organizations, leaders, and campaigns seeking to build power and scale their impact. As Executive Director of the Alliance to Develop Power (ADP), a multi-racial, low-income people’s organization, she was at the vanguard of the New Economy movement, built a sustainable community-controlled economy valued at over $80 million that stopped capital flight, generated and redistributed community wealth, and built the Springfield, Massachusetts area community. She recently served as Senior Advisor to Cynthia Nixon for Governor of New York.
Episode 6: Fight for Every Block with Gerald Taylor
What’s the difference between single-issue organizing and building power for the long term? Gerald digs in to some of the tensions that emerge when you fight for wins in the here and now, while you build institutions that teach and prepare people for democracy.
- Gerald has a deep read on the history of populism in the U.S. and the populist moment we still find ourselves in today. His 2012 essay Prometheus Unbound: Populism, The Property Question, and Social Invention is essential reading on this. .
- Gerald also mentions Emma Bowen as an early teacher. She had a big impact on many lives, and still does through the Emma Bowen Foundation which seeks to diversify the voices in media.
Episode 7: Making the Impossible Possible with Miya Yoshitani
Miya Yoshitani has been organizing for 25 years, winning tangible change within the world as it is, while having an eye toward winning the world as it should be.
Miya is the Executive Director of the Asian Pacific Environmental Network.
Since the 1990s, Miya has been at the forefront of the environmental justice movement. Through her organizing in Asian-American communities, she builds power that fights for healthy communities -- and a healthier planet.
Season One Episode Guide
Episode 1: Making Meaning with Maurice Mitchell
The pandemic has merged with this incredible moment of uprising, which is opening the opportunity to win real structural change for Black lives now. There’s nowhere to hide from a conversation about racism in America, and our collective agitation is a really good thing. Maurice Mitchell, the National Director of The Working Families Party and a leader in the Movement for Black Lives, shares more about this opportunity for mass education, the multi-racial coalition against white supremacy, the fight against cynicism, and the winning math of adding rather than subtracting.
Maurice Mitchell (@mauricewfp) is the National Director of The Working Families Party and the co-founder of Blackbird, an anchor organization within the Movement for Black Lives.
- The Combahee River Collective Statement, written by Black feminist lesbians in 1977, remains vital to the work of ensuring that all Black lives matter.
- In The New Yorker, Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor writes that “the quest to transform this country cannot be limited to challenging its brutal police.”
- Ta-Nehisi Coates elaborates on his own hope in this moment -- and why 2020 is different from 1968.
Episode 2: The Care Economy, Employment and a Living Wage with Ai-jen Poo
Overnight essential work has become part of the global lexicon. Ai-jen Poo, founder and Executive Director of the National Domestic Workers Alliance, talks to George about forging a new common sense out of this vocabulary--and the opportunity we have to re-examine how we think about work and what work we value.
- Donate to the National Domestic Workers Alliance’s Coronavirus Care Fund, which provides $400 in emergency assistance for domestic workers who are experiencing financial hardship due to the coronavirus pandemic.
- It’s time to get justice, dignity, and respect for domestic workers. Sign on to help Ai-jen and her team and help us pass the Domestic Workers Bill of Rights.
- “What will we remember about this pandemic?” asks Ai-Jen Poo in Time. “How we took care of one another.”
- Here’s the draft of the Essential Workers Bill of Rights introduced by Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., and Rep. Ro Khanna, D-Calif.
- Notes from the Storm: Black Immigrant Domestic Workers in the Time of COVID-19, a report from the Institute for Policy Studies' Black Worker Initiative in partnership with the National Domestic Workers Alliance's We Dream in Black program.
Episode 3: A Homes Guarantee with Tara Raghuveer
Rent is due and sheltering in place becomes infinitely more difficult if you can’t make rent. In this episode, George talks about our national housing crisis with Tara Raguvheer, Director of KC Tenants and the Housing Campaign Director for People’s Action–and what our world can look like if we detach profit motives from the provisioning of basic needs, like a place to call to home.
Tara Raguvheer is the Director of KC Tenants and the Housing Campaign Director for People’s Action.
Join our weekly organizing call for a Homes Guarantee.
- Read our briefing book, "A National Homes Guarantee," a vision straight from the people impacted by the nation's housing crisis.
- Watch our Homes Guarantee intro video.
- "The mismatch between housing need and costs has been a constant feature of the U.S. economy," Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor in The New Yorker. "The dynamic is especially acute for African-Americans."
- Read more about Tara's work and the work of the Homes Guarantee team in The New York Times as they re-imagine organizing in an age of social distancing.
Episode 4: Merging Race and Class with Ian Haney Lopez
Dog whistle politics is a long held strategy of American politics. George talks to Ian Haney Lopez, Professor of Public Law at UC Berkeley, about how the rich and powerful use racism as a weapon to sow a divide between race and class. This divide has only been made clearer during the pandemic and the weeks of uprisings around racial justice. But if we name this strategy, perhaps we can merge race and class and build the country we want. A multiracial democracy that works for all of us.
Ian Haney Lopez is Chief Justice Earl Warren Professor of Public Law at UC Berkeley and Director of the Racial Politics Project at the Haas Institute for a Fair and Inclusive Society. His latest book is Merge Left: Fusing Race and Class, Winning Elections, and Saving America.
Episode 5: Government for All of Us with Heather McGhee
What role can our government play in making our lives better? And what role can we play in our government? Heather McGhee, Distinguished Senior Fellow and former President of Demos, is just the person to answer these questions. In this episode, George talks to Heather about building on our gut-level interconnectivity towards a more inclusive future. Heather McGhee digs into the work that needs doing, how we transform our government and do that in a way that creates meaningful, equitable jobs for everyone.
Heather McGhee is Distinguished Senior Fellow at Demos, the “think-and-do” tank that she ran from 2014 to 2018. She is author of the forthcoming book, The Sum of Us: What Racism Costs Everyone and How We Can Prosper Together.
- Twitter: @hmcghee
- Heather C. McGhee: Racism has a cost for everyone | TED Talk
- In The Atlantic, Adam Serwer writes about how the pandemic has exposed the brokenness of America’s racial contract and the government that’s been built with it.
- Jim Tankersley, an economics and tax reporter at The New York TImes, investigates how low-income essential workers of color have been weighing the question: ”Job or Health?.”
- In an op-ed for the New York Times, researchers at the Centre for Experiment Research on Fairness, Inequality and Rationality ask: “What do you owe your neighbor?”
Episode 6: Building a Coalition with Robert Kraig
Because the pandemic has intensified the unequal, dangerous structure of our healthcare system, we need to establish healthcare as a guaranteed right for everyone. Which means now is the time for bold mandates and the creation of a new common sense that centers on a coalitional government. George talks with Robert Kraig, Executive Director of Citizen Action of Wisconsin, about lessons we’ve learned from the New Deal and the Works Progress Administration, and even the Great Recession, about building a healthier, more equitable future.
Robert Kraig is Executive Director of Citizen Action of Wisconsin and serves on the People’s Action Board of Directors.
See this story in The Nation covering the work of Robert's group, Citizen Action of Wisconsin, titled "Real Progressive Change Is Happening From the Ground Up."
- Citizen Action of Wisconsin organized a rally that called for federal action to provide financial assistance to institutions and individuals still struggling due to COVID-19. Learn more.
- "We have about 11 years to dramatically change our whole economy — that is a massive undertaking," Kraig says in this piece on how his group is pushing for a state-level Green New Deal.
Join our Texting Tuesdays program!
Episode 7: Make a F*@&ing Play with Marisa Franco
We are becoming an America we’ve never been. The Latinx community has been hit hard by COVID 19. Marisa Franco, director and co-founder of Mijente, talks with George about organizing infrastructure to support progressive leadership in the immigrant rights and broader Latinx and Chicanx community. This brutal moment of recovering, unlearning, and remembering is teaching us that we are only as safe and healthy as the most vulnerable among us -- and that through inclusive collectivity, we can move from respectability politics to strong, multiracial alliances and people power.
Marisa Franco is the Phoenix-based Director and Co-founder of Mijente, a hub for Latinx and Chicanx organizing and movement-building.
- Mijente’s April 2020 report, “The Impact of Covid-19 on Latinos.”
- If you want a quick read that can help you go deep on immigration in the U.S., pick up a copy of Naomi Pak's "Bans, Walls, Raids, Sanctuary."
- When the New York Times sued the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for federal data about Covid-19, the numbers confirmed that Blacks and Latinx people have been harmed by the disease at higher rates. Further reporting by the Associated Press reveals that in many areas nationwide, Latinx populations are experiencing a “dramatically higher percentage of positive COVID-19 tests than other racial and ethnic groups.”
- In the Washington Post, Theresa Varga writes that, “What 'Defund the Police and 'Abolish ICE’ share is an acknowledgment that bad law enforcement practices, no matter what the badge looks like, unjustly separate families.”
Join our Texting Tuesdays program!
Episode 8: Onward with George Goehl
George Goehl is one of the nation’s leading progressive organizers and director of People's Action.
- Twitter: @GeorgeGoehl
Here’s the scoop on one way we can build through addition - deep canvassing, here’s a Medium piece about the work.
Wanna learn more about George, check out this conversation with Chris Hayes.
Here’s a video Billie Kirkton of People’s Action Institute created to push back against misinformation about the protests in response to the killing of George Floyd and so many Black people. AND to encourage celebration of Juneteenth in rural communities.
We need to keep the pressure on our U.S. Senators and make sure that they all take our relief needs seriously and advance a relief package that includes cash relief, extended unemployment insurance, an eviction moratorium and rental assistance, support for immigrants and essential workers, etc. Call, email, & tweet your US Senators demanding a People's Bailout!
If you want to defend Black Lives, Support the BREATHE Act.
The Black Futures Lab was created by Alicia Garza. Their work is the work. Check it out.