IN SEARCH OF --
With an obligatory bow to the grand masters every generation of organizers and leaders must seize their moment and reinvent the nature and relevancy of the work. Saul Alinsky invented community organizing. Ed Chambers codified and professionalized what Alinsky initiated. Dick Harmon re-imagined what broad based organizations could do. Ernesto Cortes, Jr, Michael Gecan and Arnold Graf refined broad-based organizing in the crucible of urban and rural America. Sr Christine Stephens nurtured the nation's first truly powerful statewide network of broad based community organizations into sustained, constructive impact. Who's next?
-- THE CUTTING EDGE
What's next will not be simply more of the same. What's next is happening now in unlikely locales, with daring leaders and organizers dissatisfied with existing models and paradigms seeking their own pathway, smelting their own ore, putting an edge on their own ventures.
Like the rest of the human race, organizational networks are tribal. The articulated upside of this reality is to establish a vision, culture and power base that is defendable and expandable. The downside is a resistance to new ideas, directions and locales that offer promise. Personal loyalties may reinforce tribalism in unhealthy ways. Innovation requires the freedom to explore, create and make mistakes.
Cutting edge leaders and organizers understand the tension between received concepts and practices on the one hand and innovation on the other. They operate inside this tension.