November 22nd and 23rd - San Francisco
Born in India in 1952, Vandana Shiva is a world-renowned environmental leader and thinker. Director of the Research Foundation on Science, Technology, and Ecology, she is the author of many books, including Staying Alive: Women, Ecology, and Development (South End Press, 2010) Soil Not Oil: Environmental Justice in an Age of Climate Crisis (South End Press, 2008), Earth Democracy: Justice, Sustainability, and Peace (South End Press, 2005),Water Wars: Pollution, Profits, and Privatization (South End Press, 2001), Biopiracy: The Plunder of Nature and Knowledge (South End Press, 1997), Monocultures of the Mind (Zed, 1993), and The Violence of the Green Revolution (Zed, 1992).
Shiva is a leader in the International Forum on Globalization, along with Ralph Nader and Jeremy Rifkin. She addressed the World Trade Organization summit in Seattle, 1999, as well as the recent World Economic Forum in Melbourne , 2000. In 1993, Shiva won the Alternative Nobel Peace Prize (the Right Livelihood Award). In 2010, she was awarded the Sydney Peace Prize for her commitment to social justice. The founder of Navdanya (“nine seeds”), a movement promoting diversity and use of native seeds, she also set up the Research Foundation for Science, Technology, and Ecology in her mother’s cowshed in 1997. Its studies have validated the ecological value of traditional farming and been instrumental in fighting destructive development projects in India .
Derrick Jensen is a leading voice of cultural dissent. He explores the nature of injustice, how civilizations devastate the natural world, and how human beings retreat into denial at the destruction of the planet. His work examines the central question, “If the destruction of the natural world isn’t making us happy, then why are we doing it?” He is the author of more than 20 books.
Rather than proposing easy answers, Jensen traces the roots of the culture’s pathology and finds the places where they intertwine, revealing fresh and startling connections. The Culture of Make Believe (2002) examines the interrelationship between hate and economics. The book was a finalist for the 2003 J. Anthony Lukas Book Prize, which cited it as “a passionate and provocative meditation on the nexus of racism, genocide, environmental destruction and corporate malfeasance, where civilization meets its discontents.”
Arguing that contemporary culture is destined to collapse due to destruction of the planet, Jensen advocates “dismantling civilization”— but not in a conventional sense. “One of the good things about…the culture being so ubiquitously destructive is that no matter where you look — no matter what your gifts, no matter where your heart lies — there’s good and desperately important work to be done,” he writes. “Know explosives? Take out a dam. Know how to love and accept children, how to teach them to love themselves, to think and feel for themselves? That’s what you need to do.”
Jensen, a long-time activist who lives in Northern California, unflinchingly examines the culture’s darkest corners while searching for a way forward. In A Language Older Than Words (2000), he draws on his own experience of childhood abuse to examine violence as a pathology that afflicts every life on the planet. This acclaimed book has been said to accomplish the rare feat of breaking and mending the reader’s heart, as well as energizing the mind.
Freda Huson & Dini ze Toghestiy
Toghestiy received much of his cultural training from his late grandparents Madeek and Sa’itne. Their teachings brought him through much of the ancient and unceded landscapes. Many days and nights were spent exploring trails, hunting/trapping areas, fishing sites, campsites, and village sites of his people. Today, Toghestiy takes the responsibilities of being a hereditary chief very seriously. His philosophy is based on the ancient Wet’suwet’en philosophy called “Wiggus”, which requires the highest level of understanding, respect, and humility for absolutely everything. There is no price that will ever compromise his responsibility of ensuring that there is always something for the unborn generations.
Freda was chosen to be the spokesperson for the Unis’ot’en Clan in 2008, when the Unist’ot’en separated from the tribal organization called the, “Office of the Wet’suwet’en”. Her responsibilities as a spokesperson include holding meetings between her hereditary Clan Chiefs, perform liaison duties with industry and government, coordinate messages for media, and research all aspects of which are brought up for discussion regarding Clan business. Much of her grounding comes from being raised following the seasonal hunting and fishing on her people’s lands and waterways. Some of her responsibilities continue to include planning and coordinating Clan incursions out to their traditional territories. Freda’s guiding philosophy is based on teachings taught to her and her family from her great grandmother, the late Christine Holland (Knedebeas).
Huson and Toghestiy are representatives of the Unist'ot'en Camp, a resistance community whose purpose is to protect sovereign Wet'suwet'en territory from several proposed pipelines from the Tar Sands Gigaproject and shale gas from Hydraulic Fracturing Projects in the Peace River Region.
The camp is located at the shore of the Wedzin Kwah and mouth of the Gosnell Creek. These are all tributary to the the Skeena, Bulkley, and Babine Rivers. The proposed pipelines from Enbridge Northern Gateway and Pacific Trails both seek to cross the rivers at the exact point where the resistance camp is built on the Unis’tot’en Territory of Talbits Kwah.
The Unist'ot'en (C’ihlts’ehkhyu / Big Frog Clan)along with other strong uncompromising allies will stop this destructive path, for the future generations, for the biodiversity, and for solidarity with our neighbours living amidst the heavy impacts in the Tar Sands Affected areas in Northern Alberta, and regions heavily affected by Fracking Natural Gas and Shale Oil, as well as communities impacted by Refineries, Pipelines, and Fuel Terminals and Port Expansions.
Anne Keala Kelly
Anne Keala Kelly is an award winning, Native Hawaiian filmmaker and journalist whose works focus primarily on the early 21st century Hawaiian sovereignty movement. Her feature length documentary, Noho Hewa, has been screened and broadcast internationally and is widely taught in university courses that focus on indigenous peoples, the Pacific, and colonization. Ms. Kelly’s expertise is on Native Hawaiian resistance to U.S. policies regarding desecration, militarism, forced assimilation, and legislative attempts to federally recognize the Hawaiians as a native people of the United States. She is a Ted Scripps Environmental Journalism fellow and has an MFA in Directing from the UCLA School of Film and Television.
Ms. Kelly’s broadcast journalism has aired on Al Jazeera and the Pacifica Network, and her published articles, commentary and reviews have appeared in Indian Country Today, The Nation, the Honolulu Advertiser, and the Honolulu Weekly. Ms. Kelly’s other published works include: Resistance to Empire, Erasure and Selling Out, essay, “A Nation Rising,” Duke University Press; American Outrage, review, American Indian Quarterly; Hawaiian Literature and Resistance: How My Ancestors took on the Stryker Brigade and Joined the Struggle to De-militarize Hawaii, essay, American Indian Quarterly; A Kingdom Inside: The Future of Hawaiian Political Identity, essay, Futures: The Journal for Forecasting, Planning and Policy; Haolewood: Colonial Codes, Kapu Narratives and Kanaka Oiwi Discourse, essay, Spectator: The USC Journal of Film and Television Criticism
Diane Wilson is an eco-warrior in action. A fourth-generation shrimper, Wilson began fishing the bays off the Gulf Coast of Texas at the age of eight. By 24, she was a boat captain. In 1989, while running her brother's fish house at the docks and mending nets, she read a newspaper article that listed her home of Calhoun County as the number one toxic polluter in the country. She set up a meeting in the town hall to discuss what the chemical plants were doing to the bays and thus began her life as an environmental activist. Threatened by thugs and despised by her neighbors, Wilson insisted the truth be told and that Formosa Plastics stop dumping toxins into the bay.
Since then, she has launched legislative campaigns, demonstrations, and countless hunger strikes to raise awareness for environmental and human rights abuses.
Wilson speaks to the core of courage in each of us that seeks to honor our own moral compass, and act on our convictions. She has been honored with a number of awards for her work, including: National Fisherman Magazine Award, Mother Jones's Hell Raiser of the Month, Louis Gibbs' Environmental Lifetime Award, Louisiana Environmental Action (LEAN) Environmental Award, Giraffe Project, Jenifer Altman Award, Blue Planet Award and the Bioneers Award.
She is also a co-founder of CODEPINK, the Texas Jail Project, Texas Injured Workers, Injured Workers National Network and continues to lead the fight for social justice.
Sakej (James Ward) belongs to the wolf clan. He is Mi’kmaw (Mi’kmaq Nation) from the community of Esgenoopetitj (Burnt Church First Nation, New Brunswick). He is the father of nine children, four grandchildren and a caregiver for one. He resides in Shxw’owhamel First Nation with his wife Melody Andrews and their children.
Sakej is a veteran of both the Canadian and American militaries. During his military career, he volunteered and excelled at some of the most demanding leadership courses in the military, including the Special Forces Infantry Leader’s Course. He finished his military career at the rank of Sergeant.
Wanting to pursue academics, he immediately went to university and immersed himself in politics where he graduated from the University of New Brunswick from the Honour’s program with a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science with a specialization in International Relations.
Recognizing the value of an academic background, he continued to advance his studies and attended the University of Victoria where he successfully completed the Master’s of Arts Degree in Indigenous Governance.
Sakej has a long history of advocating and protecting First Nations inherent responsibilities and freedoms, having spent the last 21 years fighting the government and industry. This deep desire to bring justice to all Indigenous people has given Sakej experience in international relations where he spoke on behalf of the Mi’kmaq Nation at the United Nations Working Group for Indigenous Populations (WGIP). For his efforts in protecting Indigenous people, freedoms and territory he has received the National Aboriginal Achievement Award.
Having taught, organized, advised and led various warrior societies from all over Turtle Island down into Guatemala and Borike (Puerto Rico) Sakej has made warrior-hood his way of life. He has been on over a dozen warrior operations and countless protest actions. He dedicates all his time to developing warrior teachings and instructing warrior societies from all over.
Cherry Smiley is a dedicated young woman, deeply committed to strengthening safety and social justice for women and girls. From the Nlaka’pamux (Thompson) and Dine’ (Navajo) nations, Cherry is an emerging leader among Aboriginal women in Canada. She is an internationally recognized speaker on gender equality issues, presenting at key gatherings around the world.
Her determination to create awareness about violence against Aboriginal women and girls is apparent in her many volunteer commitments, as well as in her ability to educate through art.
Since 2008, Ms. Smiley has been involved with Vancouver Rape Relief and Women’s Shelter, where she provides support, information, and advocacy to women and girls who have experienced male violence. From 2008 to 2011, she volunteered with the Aboriginal Women’s Action Network. In 2012, she co-facilitated the Sisterwork program at the Urban Native Youth Association, engaging young Aboriginal women and girls in discussing violence, creating art and giving presentations to local communities. In 2014, she exhibited Revolution Songs, an art installation that focused on the experiences of prostituted women and women affected by prostitution.
She co-founded Indigenous Women against the Sex Industry, a volunteer group that works to educate the public about prostitution as an expression of colonialism and male violence and that works to abolish prostitution through progressive social policy. Cherry Smiley lives on Coast Salish territories in Vancouver, and holds a Masters degree in Fine Arts.
Born and raised in England, Gail Dines received her Ph.D. from the University of Salford, UK. She began her activism volunteering at a rape crisis in Tel Aviv and started the Haifa-based feminist movement – Woman to Woman – in her living room at the age of 22. Since arriving in the United States in 1986, Gail has taught at Wheelock College where she is now professor of Sociology and Women’s Studies and chair of the American Studies Department. For over twenty years Gail has been researching and writing about the porn industry and pop culture and has published many articles on such varied topics as the image of women in Hollywood, racism in porn, the hypersexualization of our culture, and the ways images shape our sexuality and our relationships.
Gail has spoken at hundreds of colleges across the country and at conferences around the world. Her lectures attract large numbers of students and the Q + A sessions often continue for hours with highly engaged and energized students. She is a gifted speaker who immediately connects with her audience. Her lectures change the way people think about pop culture and porn, and students regularly say that they will never look at the world the same way again.
Gail’s edited book, Gender, Race and Class in Media, is a bestseller in colleges and is popular also in Canada, England and Australia. The book won the Myers Center Award for the Study of Human Rights, and is now in its third edition. Her new book, PORNLAND: How Porn has Hijacked our Sexuality, examines how men and women’s lives, sexuality and relationships are shaped by the porn culture.
In 2007 Gail helped form the activist group, Stop Porn Culture (SPC). One of the goals of this organization is to develop educational materials that raise awareness about the effects of living in a porn culture. SPC comprises academics, activists, anti-violence experts, students, parents and people concerned about porn’s impact on the culture. SPC has developed two slideshows: one on the effects of porn on women, men and the culture, and the second on the impact of porn on children and youth. The slideshows are being given across the country, as well as in Russia, The Congo, England, Scotland, Ireland and Australia. For a free copy, email email@example.com.
Gail has appeared on numerous television shows, including those on CNN, MSNBC, Showtime, and Fox. She is a regular guest on radio shows and her work is frequently quoted in newspapers and magazines across the country. As a public intellectual, Gail has been successful in opening up a national discussion on the effects of the porn culture. A committed scholar and activist, Gail makes sure that her work is accessible and engaging to people in and outside of the academy.
Saba Malik is a political activist who has organized on issues of racism, peak oil, and anti-civilization resistance for many years. The course of her life changed in the 1990’s, when she visited the remote communities of the Hunza Valley in Pakistan and lived with landbased peoples engaged in sustainable living practices.
Malik is a board member of Fertile Ground Environmental Institute, and is passionately committed to organized political resistance. She is a trained herbal medicine practitioner and identifies as a radical feminist. She was born in London and currently lives in California with her two children.
Kourtney Mitchell is a writer and activist living in northern Georgia. Born and raised in Illinois, Kourtney co-authored The Enemy in Blue: The Renatta Frazier Story, a self-published creative nonfiction work chronicling his mother's fight against racism, and then spent four years assisting with anti-violence and pro-feminist organizing on campus while in college. He is a member of several international activist organizations and spent three years as an infantry soldier in the Georgia Army National Guard.
Kourtney is the grandson of a former member of the Black Panther Party for Self Defense.
His work focuses on pro-feminist theory and action for men and relating men's violence against women to the larger ecological and social crises our planet is currently facing. He has helped train hundreds of young men and women in preventing violence and bystander intervention, from college campuses, high school and middle school classes and community groups.
Kourtney is a member of Veterans for Peace where he is currently running for a seat on the Board of Directors.
Guy McPherson, Professor Emeritus, University of Arizona, received undergraduate and graduate degrees focused on extraction of natural resources. Shortly after earning a Ph.D., he was hired into a tenure-track position at a major research university. During his initial decade at the university, Guy was a successful professor by every measure: well-published in all the right places, he taught and mentored students who acquired the best jobs in the field, and he performed abundant, exemplary professional service.
About ten years into his career, McPherson began focusing his efforts on social criticism, with topics ranging from education and evolution to the twin sides of fossil-fuel coin: global climate change and energy decline and the attendant economic consequences.
He decided to walk away from his tenured position and explains his reasons in his book - "Walking Away from Empire: A Personal Journey."
Doug Zachary spent the 1950s in a church orphanage in Texas where he was heavily indoctrinated with White Male Supremacism. The suffering of non-White people was said to be justified because they were the Children of Ham. All females had to be subordinated because they descend from Eve, Jezebel, and Delilah. Children were in league with Nature and the Devil; they required an iron discipline.
The resultant belief system underwent a serious challenge when Zachary's Mexican stepfather pulled him out of the children's home and when his rebellious mother demonstrated to him that everyone deserves dignity. When rebelling Marines taught him to think critically regarding class, race and war, Zachary began to “study war” systematically; earning a Conscientious Objector Discharge on May 15, 1970, the day of the Jackson State killings in Mississippi.
Zachary was active in the Austin Peace & Justice Coalition from 1989-2001, cofounding Austin - Tan Cerca de la Frontera and the Austin Living Wage Coalition. He hosted humanitarian convoys to rebel forces in Nicaragua, El Salvador, and Mexico, and worked with the Catholic Worker on Austin streets. The words of Vandana Shiva, who was visiting Texas opposing the theft of Basmati rice "patent rights", planted a seed that later led Zachary to a MA in Environmental Spirituality at the Sophia Center.
Doug Zachary, born to field crop workers in 1949, has published stories about the adult male violence in his immediate family, including murder and suicide (vowvop.org). He works for Veterans For Peace, a group of dissident veterans pledged to end the use of "war as an instrument of foreign policy".
"I began working to end war, primarily because of my class roots; poor people suffer during wars while wealthy people prosper but I have also determined that Misogyny is a form of war and recently that Industrialism, itself, is 'strangely like war.'
Alice Walker is an internationally celebrated author, poet and activist whose books include seven novels, four collections of short stories, four children’s books, and volumes of essays and poetry. She’s best known for The Color Purple, the 1983 novel for which she won the Pulitzer Prize—the first African American woman to win the Pulitzer Prize in Fiction, though (in her opinion) not the first African American woman to deserve it —and the National Book Award.
Walker has been an activist all of her adult life, and believes that learning to extend the range of our compassion is activity and work available to all. She is a staunch defender not only of human rights, but of the rights of all living beings. She is one of the world’s most prolific writers, yet tirelessly continues to travel the world to literally stand on the side of the poor, and the economically, spiritually and politically oppressed. She also stands, however, on the side of the revolutionaries, teachers and leaders who seek change and transformation of the world. Upon returning from Gaza in 2008, Walker said, “Going to Gaza was our opportunity to remind the people of Gaza and ourselves that we belong to the same world: the world where grief is not only acknowledged, but shared; where we see injustice and call it by its name; where we see suffering and know the one who stands and sees is also harmed, but not nearly so much as the one who stands and sees and says and does nothing.”
Chris Hedges, whose column is published Mondays on Truthdig, has written twelve books, including the New York Times best seller “Days of Destruction, Days of Revolt” (2012), which he co-authored with the cartoonist Joe Sacco. Some of his other books include “Death of the Liberal Class” (2010), “Empire of Illusion: The End of Literacy and the Triumph of Spectacle” (2009), “I Don’t Believe in Atheists” (2008) and the best selling “American Fascists: The Christian Right and the War on America” (2008). His book “War Is a Force That Gives Us Meaning” (2003) was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award for Nonfiction. In 2011, Nation Books published a collection of Hedges’ Truthdig columns called “The World As It Is: Dispatches on the Myth of Human Progress.”
Hedges previously spent nearly two decades as a foreign correspondent in Central America, the Middle East, Africa and the Balkans. He has reported from more than 50 countries and has worked for The Christian Science Monitor, National Public Radio, The Dallas Morning News and The New York Times, for which he was a foreign correspondent for 15 years.
Hedges was part of the team of reporters at The New York Times awarded a Pulitzer Prize in 2002 for the paper’s coverage of global terrorism. He also received the Amnesty International Global Award for Human Rights Journalism in 2002. The Los Angeles Press Club honored Hedges’ original columns in Truthdig by naming the author the Online Journalist of the Year in 2009 and again in 2011. The LAPC also granted him the Best Online Column award in 2010 for his Truthdig essay “One Day We’ll All Be Terrorists”.
Chief Caleen Sisk
Caleen Sisk is the Spiritual Leader and Tribal Chief of the Winnemem Wintu Tribe, who practice their traditional culture and ceremonies in their territory along the McCloud River watershed in Northern California.
Since assuming leadership responsibilities in 2000, Caleen has focused on maintaining the cultural and religious traditions of the Tribe as well as advocating for California salmon restoration, the Human Right to Water and the protection of indigenous sacred sites. She is also currently leading her Tribe’s efforts to work with Maori and federal fish biologists to return Chinook salmon to the McCloud River.
Caleen is an internationally known speaker on traditional tribal and spiritual issues, having spoken on diverse topics such as spiritual medicine ways, the spirit of water, global warming, sacred sites protection and the responsibility of tribal people to honor their tribal lifeway.
Caleen is also a leading voice in raising awareness of the poor human rights conditions suffered by federally unrecognized tribes and unrepresented indigenous peoples around the world. She is a regular speaker at the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues in New York where she has campaigned for the U.N. to study the plight of federally unrecognized tribes in the United States. She is also the Spiritual and Environmental Commissioner for ENLACE Continental, an international network of indigenous women.
For more than 30 years, Caleen was mentored and taught in traditional healing and Winnemem culture by her late great aunt, Florence Jones, who was the tribe’s spiritual leader for 68 years. Caleen’s traditional teachings and training comes from an unbroken line of leadership of the Winnemem Wintu Tribe.
Strongly rooted in her spirituality and her family, Caleen cares deeply for her Winnemem people and for oppressed people around the world.
In late 2003, weary of the overall failure of the US media to accurately report on the realities of the war in Iraq for the Iraqi people, Dahr Jamail went to the Middle East to report on the war himself, where he has spent more than one year in Iraq as one of only a few independent US journalists in the country. Dahr has also has reported from Syria, Lebanon, Turkey and Jordan. He has also reported extensively on veterans’ resistance against US foreign policy, and is now focussing on anthropogenic climate disruption and the environment.
Dahr’s stories have been published with Truthout, Inter Press Service, Tom Dispatch, The Sunday Herald in Scotland, The Guardian, Foreign Policy in Focus, Le Monde, Le Monde Diplomatique, The Huffington Post, The Nation, The Independent, and Al Jazeera, among others. Dahr’s writing has been translated into French, Polish, German, Dutch, Spanish, Japanese, Portuguese, Chinese, Arabic and Turkish. On radio as well as television, Dahr has reported for Democracy Now! and Al-Jazeera, and has appeared on the BBC, NPR, and numerous other stations around the globe.
Dahr’s reporting has earned him numerous awards, including the 2008 Martha Gellhorn Award for Journalism, The Lannan Foundation Writing Residency Fellowship, the James Aronson Award for Social Justice Journalism, the Joe A. Callaway Award for Civic Courage, and four Project Censored awards.
Sarah Meghan Mah & Yuly Chan
Sarah M Mah is a third generation Canadian-born Chinese woman raised in Vancouver, BC. Her family was among the early Chinese immigrants levied the head tax in the late 1800's, as well as those who left rural China in the 1950's in search of a better life in Canada. Formally trained as a geneticist and currently completing a masters degree in epidemiology, her feminist activism began as a front-line anti-violence worker at a rape crisis centre and transition house, and she continues her work as a member of the equality-seeking women's group, the Asian Women Coalition Ending Prostitution. She now resides in Montreal, Quebec.
Yuly Chan is a first-generation Chinese-Canadian, originally from Venezuela. Based in Vancouver, BC, she has worked extensively with social justice organizations for the last 10 years on health inequalities, fighting patriarchy, racism, and poverty. She began as an organizer with the Vancouver Bus Riders Union focusing public transit and environmental justice. She then co-founded the Alliance for People's Health, a collective of health workers and students that organized around health and quality of life for working class people. Presently, she is an active member of the Asian Women Coalition Ending Prostitution, working to challenge the normalization of human trafficking and prostitution.
Jeannette Armstrong is Syilx Okanagan, a fluent speaker of nsyilxcen and a traditional knowledge keeper of the Okanagan Nation. She currently holds the Canada Research Chair in Okanagan Indigenous Knowledge and Philosophy at UBC Okanagan.
She has a Ph.D. in Environmental Ethics and Syilx Indigenous Literatures. She was awarded British Columbia’s Community Achievement Award in 2012. She is the recipient of the EcoTrust Buffett Award for Indigenous Leadership and she has been instrumental in the research and implementation of a successful nsyilxcen adult language fluency and cultural revitalization program at the En’owkin Centre the Post Secondary Institute of the Okanagan Nation. She is distinguished with Honorary Doctorate’s from the University of BC, the University of St. Thomas, and the University of Queens and holds the Okanagan College Lifetime Fellow award. She is an author and Indigenous activist whose published works include literary titles and academic writing on a wide variety of Indigenous issues. She currently serves on Environment Canada’s Traditional Knowledge Subcommittee on the Status of Endangered Species and Wildlife in Canada.
Vince Emanuele was born and raised in America's Rust-Belt. His family emigrated from Italy and Yugoslavia during WWII. Upon settling in Chicago, Vince's family joined the local union movement, participating in militant protests such as the Memorial Day Massacre in 1937. In 2002, he joined the United States Marine Corps as a squad automatic machine gunner. After two combat-deployments in Iraq, he refused orders for a third and immediately began organizing with Veterans for Peace and Iraq Veterans Against the War, eventually serving on the Board of Directors for IVAW.
In 2008, Vince testified to Congress at the Winter Soldier Hearings on Capitol Hill, where he provided detailed accounts of war crimes, atrocities, drug abuse and sexual assault within the military. During this period, he continued to work with various movements, participating in a wide-range of campaigns, protests, street theatre performances, writing workshops, and direct actions.
From 2010-2013, he hosted a community radio program and podcast called "Veterans Unplugged." In this context, Vince interviewed hundreds of activists, organizers and academics surrounding issues of ecology, militarism, civilization, capitalism, ideology and philosophy. Since then, he has worked as a campaign manager, journalist and public speaker. He has given hundreds of lectures in high schools, universities, union halls, churches and communities around the world.
His experiences in the military have been captured in Olivier Morel's award-winning documentary film, "On the Bridge," which has been recreated in the French graphic novel, "Revenants." Vince's writings and transcribed interviews have been featured on AlterNet, CounterPunch, the Christian Science Monitor, In These Times, CounterCurrents and ZNet. He has also appeared on numerous television and radio programs, including those on NPR, BBC, CNN, Russia Today, DemocracyNow! and Al Jazeera English.
Currently, Vince is writing his first book and re-launching the podcast radio program, "Veterans Unplugged." He recently returned home from a speaking tour in Australia, and has been on the ground, reporting in Ferguson, Missouri. He lives in Michigan City, Indiana.
Thomas Linzey is the co-author, alongside Anneke Campbell, of the book Be the Change: How to Get What You Want in Your Community. Linzey grew up in Mobile, Alabama in a family filled with environmentalists and surrounded by animals, which was instrumental in his decision to go into environmental law and lead the fight against environment-destroying corporations. During his first-year as a law student at Widener Law School in PA, he persuaded a former lawyer for the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to take him on as a research assistant. This experience opened his eyes to state statutes which allow a state's attorney general to revoke a corporate charter in the event of wrongdoing, though he realized that governments, in reality, have no interest in actually taking part in such activity.
Inspired by this experience, in the spring of 1995, Linzey created the Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund (CELDF). The Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund is a non-profit, public interest law firm providing free and affordable legal services to communities facing threats to their local environment, local agriculture, the local economy, and quality of life. Their mission is to build sustainable communities by assisting people to assert their right to local self-government and the rights of nature.
Established in 1995, the Legal Defense Fund has now become the principal advisor to community groups and municipal governments struggling to transition from merely regulating corporate harms to stopping those harms by asserting local, democratic control directly over corporations.
Through grassroots organizing, public education and outreach, legal assistance, and drafting of ordinances, we have now assisted over 110 municipalities in Pennsylvania, New Hampshire, Maine, and Virginia to draft and adopt new laws with over 350,000 people living under these governing frameworks. These laws address activities such as corporate water withdrawals, longwall coal mining, factory farming, the land application of sewage sludge, and uranium mining. They also assisted Ecuador in revising their national constitution to include rights for nature.
Richard Manning is an environmental author and journalist, with particular interest in the history and future of the American prairie, agriculture and poverty. He writes frequently about trauma and poverty for the National Native Children's Trauma Center based at the University of Montana, where he is a senior research associate. He is the author of eight books, and his articles have been published in Harper's Magazine, The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, Audubon, and The Bloomsbury Review.
His books include “Grassland: The History, Biology, Politics and Promise of the American Prairie”, “Against the Grain: How Agriculture Has Hijacked Civilization”, and “Rewilding the West: Restoration in a Prairie Landscape”.
Stephanie McMillan has been a political cartoonist since 1992. She is the
creator of the editorial cartoon Code Green, and the comic strip Minimum Security, syndicated through Universal Uclick.
Her cartoons have earned several major awards, including the RFK Journalism Award (2012) and the Sigma Delta Chi from the Society for Professional Journalists (2010). They have appeared in hundreds of print and online publications worldwide including the Los Angeles Times, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, Daily Beast, Yes! magazine, Climate Progress, Funny Times, Yahoo.com, San Francisco Bay Guardian, and The Occupied Wall Street Journal (of Occupy Wall Street).
She has seven books, including "Capitalism Must Die! A Brief Introduction
to Capitalism: what it is, why it sucks, and how to crush it" (theory with comics, 2014, INIP), "The Minimum Security Chronicles: Resistance to
Ecocide" (graphic novel, 2013, Seven Stories Press), and The Beginning of
the American Fall (comics journalism, 2012, Seven Stories Press).
A solo show of her work was exhibited in October 2013 at the West Gallery,
California State University, Northridge. In addition, her cartoons have
been included in numerous group exhibits.
An organizer all her life, Stephanie is a founding member of the
anti-capitalist/anti-imperialist group One Struggle. She also contributes
political theory to the publishing project Idées Nouvelles, Idées
Charles Derber is a writer who studies the "big picture" of American culture and global capitalism. His recent books focus on climate change, capitalism, globalization, terrorism, the culture of hegemony, and the power of multinational corporations. He has also written extensively on the American Dream and the crisis of individualism that defines American life, showing how our problems of community are organically tied to economic and political forces.
Public sociologists seek to bring the sociological imagination to a larger public forum. Derber writes mainly for a broad, public audience and spends considerable time writing and speaking for mass media and magazines. His books have been translated into German, Chinese, and Polish and are addressing a global audience. He has been intimately involved in the worldwide debate about climate change, capitalism, globalization, corporate power, the war on terrorism, and American Empire. This reflects his view that sociologists who feel they have something important to say should write in a clear and simple way rather than dress their arguments up in technical jargon. Sociologists have a distinctive perspective to offer on our social problems, and we are defaulting on our responsibilities if we don't enter the public debate.
His current work focuses on globalization, corporate power, American militarism, the culture of hegemony, and the new peace and global justice movements. The world is becoming as dominated by business values and power today as America was by the Robber Barons a century ago. Derber is persuaded that the overwhelming economic and cultural power of global corporations, increasingly melded with the political and military hegemonic power of the American government and the crisis of climate change, are together an integrated crisis that is now the pre-eminent social issue of the 21st century, and that we need a new vision and political movement that can offer an alternative.
Stan Goff is a veteran and writer. His military career was primarily in Special Operations, and spanned from 1970-1996. He worked as an infantryman in airborne and Ranger units, as a "counterterrorist operator" with the unit once called Delta Force, as a Medical Sergeant with Special Forces, and as a Special Forces Operations and Intelligence Sergeant. Listed among the places where he "served" were Vietnam, Panama, Guatemala, Grenada, El Salvador, South Korea, Jordan, Honduras, Peru, Colombia, Somalia, and Haiti.
Upon leaving the US Army in 1996, he became an activist and writer. He
studied marxism, feminism, black nationalism, and environmental issues in conjunction with his activism, which peaked during the antiwar movement after the attacks of September 11, 2001. He wrote for a variety of leftist publications; and by 2006 was breaking with the traditional left based on his belief that they largely ignored or pigeon-holed the issues of gender and environment... which he believes are inextricably related. "The left," he said, "has as much a Promethean complex as the right. This is essentially a white male complex."
In 2006, he was the lead organizer for Veterans For Peace during the
"Walkin' to New Orleans" Veterans and Hurricane Survivors March for Peace and Justice, and it was observation of the post-Katrina Gulf Coast and the myriad ways in which people had adapted "off the grid" that re-focused his thinking on industrialism and organizational scale as the problems, and relocalization as an essential part of whatever "solutions" might be realistic. It was also around this time that he began studying Christianity, and he has been strongly influenced by Stanley Hauerwas, Amy Laura Hall, Michel de Certeau, Ivan Illich, and Barbara Duden.
His books include "Hideous Dream - A Soldier's Memoir of the US Invasion of Haiti," "Full Spectrum Disorder - The Military in the New American Century," "Energy War - Exterminism for the 21st Century," and "Sex & War." His latest book, "Borderlines - Reflections of Sex, War, and Church," is due to be published in 2015 by Cascade Press.
He lives in Southeast Michigan with his wife, Sherry, but has spent most of his life living in the American South. He has four children and six grandchildren. He currently works with the Adrian Dominican Sisters at their Motherhouse in Adrian, Michigan, on a long-term permaculture project for the more-than-100 acre campus there.
Dominique Christina is a writer, performer, educator, and activist. She holds four national titles in the three years she has been competing in slam, including the 2012 and 2014 Women of the World Slam Champion and 2011 National Poetry Slam Champion. She is presently the only person to have held two national titles at one time and the only poet in history to win the Women of the World Poetry Championship TWICE.
Her work is greatly influenced by her family's legacy in the Civil Rights Movement; her grandfather was a Hall of Famer in the Negro Leagues, while her aunt, Congressional Medal of Honor recipient, was one of the Little Rock Nine. Dominique has always known she was a colored girl. Her writing is a celebration of that. Dominique Christina has performed across the country, opening for Cornel West, and performing for the Trayvon Martin and Emmett Till families in Washington DC at the Shiloh Baptist Church.
A former 1996 Olympic Volleyball player, Dominique has over 10 years experience as a licensed teacher, holding double Masters degrees in Education and English Literature.