Experience


For the past 25 years I’ve worked with some of the most powerful unions, progressive advocacy non-profits, and community coalitions in the US and internationally.

I approach change as an organizer: How do we build people power – a constituency that demands change?  How do we shift the narrative and change the story? How do we build organizations and systems that reflect the change we wish to see in the world?

  • Wellstone Action – eleven years at the largest and leading movement building institute in the US (2004-2015)

  • Minnesota Labor Education Service – University of Minnesota – Director of Northeast Programs (2001-2005)

  • AFSCME – seven years as an organizer and staff representative (1994-2001)

  • Masters in Advocacy and Political Leadership (MAPL) Program – twelve years as faculty and founding member (2004-2016)

  • Built and led several labor-community coalitions, including the Duluth Living Wage Campaign, the first coalition to attach wage requirements to corporate subsidies (1996)

  • Electoral and issue campaigns – Larson for Mayor (2015, 2019); MN United for All Families (2012), Australian Labor Party, Tasmania (2011), MN GOTV Consultant (2014; 2010; 2008; 2006; 2004), managed or served as General Consultant for three gubernatorial races and over two dozen legislative, mayoral, city council, school board and county commissioner races 

  • Candidate recruitment and development – helped recruit dozens of candidates and helped shape their message and campaign and personal narratives

  • Advocacy – Worked with some of the largest unions and organizing networks in the United States, including the AFL-CIO, SEIU, CWA, LIUNA, USW, NEA and numerous state affiliates, PICO, NPA, CCC, BISC, State Voices, Working Families Party, as well as doing work in Australia with Campaign Action!, United Voice, Finance Sector Union, Get Up!  Unions New South Wales, and the Sydney Alliance.

  • Adjunct and Assistant professor – 18 years in American Studies and Cultural Studies at the University of Minnesota

  • Leadership Fellow – Broadbent Institute, Ottawa Canada

  • Education – BA in Viral Immunology (1979); Ph.D. in American Studies from the University of Minnesota (1994)