Rev. C.T. Vivian
has been a leading figure in the freedom movement for more than sixty years. He currently serves as president of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference. Rev. Vivian was a founder of the National Anti-Klan Network (Center for Demo¬cratic Renewal) in 1979. He participated in his first sit-in demonstration in 1945, and two years later desegregated a cafeteria in Peoria, Illinois. He was instrumental in starting the Nashville student movement in 1960, and in 1961 rode the first Freedom Bus into Jackson, Mississippi. He became director of affiliates of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference Rides, desegregating St. Augustine, Florida in 1964, and served in the 1965 Selma voting rights effort.
served three elected terms as a United Auto Workers local union president, UAW Local 719, which represented more than 8,000 GM locomotive builders near Chicago. After retiring from that plant, she worked for SEIU for 13 years as Director of the Illinois State Council and for the International Union. Most recently, she was Chair of the Mount Diablo Peace and Justice Center in California. She has participated in the Occupy movement, staying in both Zucotti Park and in Oakland. A lifelong resident of Chicago, she now lives in the Bay Area.
Charles Tanner Jr.
is a longtime civil and human rights activist who has worked to counter the organized white supremacist and anti-Indian movements. He worked with both the Coalition for Human Dignity and the Northwest Coalition for Human Dignity as a researcher and writer. Chuck is an environmental scientist and co-coordinator of Borderlands Research and Education, which is dedicated to using strategic research and education to support indigenous self-determination.
Hilary O. Shelton
serves as the Director to the NAACP’s Washington Bureau and is the Senior Vice President for Advocacy and Policy. He previously worked as the Federal Liaison for the Government Affairs Department of The United Negro College Fund in Washington, D.C. Hilary was the Federal Policy Program Director to the United Methodist Churches’ General Board of Church & Society. He is the recipient of the American Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee’s Excellence in Advocacy Award and the Union of American Hebrew Congregation Religious Action Center’s Civil Rights Leadership Award.
Anita L. Russell
is currently serving her sixth two-year term as the President of the Kansas City, Missouri Branch of the NAACP, a chapter with over 1,300 members. She is also a member of the NAACP National Board of Directors and is on the board’s Execu-tive Committee. Anita is a member of Ebenezer African Methodist Episcopal Church and serves on the Board of Stewards. She is an active member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. Beta Omega Chapter. She is retired from SBC/AT&T.
Loretta J. Ross
was a co-founder of the SisterSong Women of Color Reproductive Justice Collective in Atlanta. She was National Co-Director of the April 25, 2004 March for Women’s Lives in Washington D.C. She was the Program Director at the Center for Democratic Renewal, and was one of the first African-American women to direct a rape crisis center in the 1970s. She is the co-author of Undivided Rights: Women of Color Organize for Reproductive Justice, (2004) and author of the “The Color of Choice” chapter in Incite! Women of Color Against Violence (2006). She is a mother, grandmother and a great-grandmother.
has been involved in pro-immigrant advocacy at the local, state, and federal government levels for more than a decade. For six years she was the Director of Policy Advocacy and Research at El Centro, Inc. in Kansas City, Kansas. She has promoted immigrants’ access to higher education and has worked against English-only legislation and Arizona-style racial profiling laws. Melinda is on the Board of Directors of Kansas Families for Education, works an adjunct instructor in the School of Social Welfare at the University of Kansas, and is the mother of three young children.
was a founder of the Coalition for Human Dignity in Portland, Oregon in 1988, following the murder of Ethiopian student Mulegeta Seraw by members of a white power skinhead group. For more than a decade he investigated white nationalist organizations and white power skinheads across the Northwest. He wrote groundbreaking background reports and newsletter articles, and was one of four authors of The Northwest Imperative: Documenting a Decade of Hate, published in 1994. He has worked periodically as a volunteer in the IREHR office in Kansas City. He now lives in Corte Madera, California with his son.
is Ojibwe and Oglala Lakota. She is the Co-Coordinator of the Native American Women’s Dialogue on Infant Mor-tality. She is an alumnus of the Circle of Leaders Academy. In the past, she served as a program associate of the Washington Association of Churches Racial and Environmental Justice Program. Her 2002 Op-Ed in the Seattle Times, “Hunt for a Higher Truth: We can refuse to be polarized by the Makah whaling debate,” set a standard for thoughtful approaches to the exercise of Native American sovereignty and treaty rights.
is an assistant professor of anthropology at Zayed University in Abu Dhabi. His 2010 chapter, “Relationships of War: Mothers, Soldiers, Knowledge” (with Angie Reed Garner) was included in Women, War and Violence: Personal Perspectives and Global Activism. His entry on “Militia Groups,” was included in The Encyclopedia of War and American Society (2006). He previously served the Portland-based Coalition for Human Dignity as an editor and director of research.
Michael M. Enriquez
is a co-founder of the KC99 project, and played a leadership role in Kansas City’s Occupy Wall St. movement. As an organizer for the Service Employees International Union in 2010, he helped organize the first healthcare unions in Texas; and in 2011 led a hospital campaign in Overland Park, Kansas where workers gained their first contract. He has been a co-founder and leader of various student and community organizations in Kansas City since 2000. He is an anti-racist organizer of the 1999 Seattle demonstration generation, which emerged to fight corporate-led globalization. He earned a B.A. in history and a minor in African-American Studies from the University of Kansas in 2008.