Generating ideas, connections, and action

equity

What it takes to shift Power

Perhaps because my background is in organizing and advocacy, for me the purpose of my work supporting leadership is to shift power. Looking at who has power and who doesn’t and then shifting that balance. 

 

I think we accomplish shifting power by actually creating opportunities for people with less power, marginalized and directly impacted people, to have real power over the conditions which impact their lives, not just “a voice” which power-holders can choose to hear or not. If we are to build leadership support structures that value equity we must intentionally assess and question how power and authority are distributed, in our society and in our institutions. 

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Creating Space 2019 - Tell us what you think!

The LLC team is excited to be working on the next Creating Space event, tentatively planned for Fall 2019 in Detroit, MI. Creating Space was

first held in 1998 to test the idea that people doing leadership development would benefit from connecting our learning and that first Creating Space became the mandate for LLC's formation two years later. Creating Space is a truly innovative event which brings together practitioners, funders, evaluators, students, and others passionate about leadership. This event is unlike other conferences, and is more akin to an “unconference.” Creating Space is a gathering that allows folks to build authentic relationships and think differently while learning and sharing new tools, practices, and ways of being. Since LLC strives to walk it as we talk it, Creating Space intentionally embodies LLC’s core values. Because equity is an essential value for LLC, we intend for Creating Space to be a convening which pushes the edges of centering equity, particularly centering directly impacted people.

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Leadership and Governance

Leadership is at the very heart of the ways in which we work, the processes through which we act and learn. We talk

about what it means to center equity in leadership and this week I had the opportunity to delve more deeply into

what this actually looks like with a wise group of people tackling questions of governance, for us the context was networks, and yet the questions are real for all justice loving people.

 

 

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LLC Webinar | Leadership in Community

November 29, 2018

10:00 am Pacific - 11am | 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm Eastern





 

Uplifting innovative leadership in and with community is about identifying the levers to realign power. This includes shifting who receives andmakes decisions about money and other critical resources.


Come hear from Lisa Leverette and team members from Community Connections Grant Program about their revolutionary approach to supporting and edifying leadership for grassroots residents and youth in Detroit. They are challenging conventional ideas about ‘capacity building’ which assumes a deficit in specific skills when it’s often a question of access to resources and, instead figuring out with community what kinds of supports enable transformational community-driven change.  


 

 

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Continuing the Co-Director Search: Additional Updates

We have been thinking long and hard about how to conduct the search for a Co-Director in a way that is equity driven, networked and collective i.e. aligned with all of our values. After all, there are some unavoidable power dynamics in the interview process that we can’t eliminate, but we do want to address and be transparent about them. We hope to get better at this, and for now, this is our best thinking about the process. So a huge shout out to all of the candidates who are being very patient with our process, which we hope reflects relationality, transparency and equity.

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Update on the Co-Directorship

We have received applications from a number of exciting candidates. We have interviewed people who are still of interest to us, and are keeping the position open a bit longer to meet additional candidates.  We are learning as we go, and have a great team of folks from the LLC board and network who are actively engaging alongside us in this learning. Here are some of our early lessons:

 

We are a relationale network and that goes for recruitment too:  I was in a hurry to recruit a co-director because we were holding off on hiring a FT Operations and Program Manager after Miriam left so that the new person could be involved. We also were holding off on board recruitment for the same reason. This was creating a sense of urgency about an important decision for LLC.  We need to create time to get to know potential candidates, and for them to get to know us. This will require more than two interviews. Getting to know more candidates is an important process for understanding what will contribute most to the future we hope to see. So, we are slowing it down so that we can engage with more people, and talk more with interested candidates.

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Developing Leadership that Contributes to Racial Equity

Our collective document is getting unwieldy, and in a good way. We want to allow for more generative contribution before working to integrate all of the comments and organize the content in more accessible ways. We continue to welcome comments on diagnostic questions, recommendations and resources, and we are getting great resources so please keep them coming. To add your comments or access this collective document, click here.

 

In addition, it would be helpful earlier in the document to describe what we are driving towards as the skills, ability, knowledge, practices and behaviors that we would expect to be present and observable in individuals and groups. In other words, what does racial equity compentency look like in practice. Answering this question if fundamental to understanding what it will take to help people and groups get there. We would love your help with this question in the document.

 

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Six Lessons for Cultivating Leadership of Color in the Community Organizing Movement

By Ericka Stallings, ANHD's Director of Organizing and Advocacy

Non-profit organizing institutions have long struggled with the fact that their leadership is disproportionately white and middle class. We all know that our organizing will ultimately be more effective and more grounded in a true commitment to justice, if the primary actors are directly impacted people, those who come from the marginalized communities in which we work. Yet, for many reasons, groups in the Community Development movement too often fail to achieve this.

 

Cultivating movement leadership of color must include an effective approach for recognizing, attracting, and training new community organizers of color, then supporting them as they hone their skills to more advanced levels. But even here - or maybe, especially here - our movement falls short; we have seen that it is consistently difficult for people from marginalized communities to overcome the barriers to both entry and advancement in community organizing. Consequently, people of color and other marginalized people are grossly underrepresented in leadership positions . There are many reasons for this, including implicit bias and the glorification of mainstream career and educational backgrounds, both of which hinder the recognition of candidates from marginalized backgrounds. Consequently, our organizations often ignore or undervalue the critically important skills and experiences that directly-impacted leaders can bring to movement organizations.

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LLC Webinar | Leadership and Large Scale Change: Are We Setting Our Sites High Enough?

 

July 12, 2018

11:00 am Pacific - 12PM | 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm Eastern

 

People who are putting their time, energy and resources into supporting and cultivating leadership are for the most part doing the work to advance meaningful change and social justice. Our learning about this work is struggling to keep up with our change aspirations. It's not enough to know that participants believe they are better leaders without answering questions about the ways in which leadership development work is creating equity and contributing to concrete changes in the health, education, and wealth of all. This webinar will share findings from a collaborative research efforts between leadership Funders and Evaluators to understand what we can achieve through leadership investments, how we can know, and what we are learning about the kind of leadership we need to contribute to greater equity.

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