Cultural Organizing for Progressive Change

This session explored the power of cultural organizing to expand who is included in organizing and how they are included, creatively frame and communicate visions of change, encourage critical thinking, break down fear, and humanize polarized issues. Artists, organizers, cultural workers and activists using a variety of approaches will come together for a candid conversation about the challenges and opportunities presented by cultural organizing. A range of examples will be presented to demonstrate diverse approaches to cultural organizing in both rural and urban contexts, involving both youth and adults, and including media, graphic design, hip hop, and cultural encuentros and celebrations. Short presentations were followed by an interactive discussion.


amalia deloney (Minneapolis, MN) is the Project Director for the Main Street Project, the non-partisan arm of the League of Rural Voters, and Co-Director of the Raices Project.

Rob “Biko” Baker (Milwaukee, WI) is the Executive Director of the League of Young Voters, and a nationally recognized hip-hop organizer, journalist, activist, and scholar.

Jenny Lee (Detroit, MI) is an organizer of the Allied Media Conference who also coordinates the Live Arts Media Project of Detroit Summer. /

Joe Namy, aka El-Iqaa (Detroit, MI) is a Libnani-American multimedia artist exploring color, sound and images as a means of documenting and catalyzing social change and cultural representation.


Caron Atlas (Brooklyn, NY) is the Director of the Arts & Democracy Project, which supports and builds the momentum of arts activism and cultural organizing.


Presenters included: amalia deloney, Riaces Project; Biko Baker, League of Young Voters; artist Joe Namy;