2012 Communications Institute
2012 Communications Institute
On June 10-13, 2012, The Opportunity Agenda conducted its third annual Communications Institute. Developed for social justice advocates, the Institute consisted of four days of intensive, in-person training and skills-building with continuing support activities. The focus of the 2012 Institute was on immigration, with an emphasis on the effect that enforcement and policing has on immigrants and on their communities as a whole.
The fifteen 2012 Institute Fellows represented a diverse group of advocates, committed to learning and refining communications skills and using them in specific social justice work on a relatively short timeline. The goal of the Institute was to enhance their abilities to be effective spokespeople and opinion leaders.
The Communications Institute was made possible, in part, by the generous contributions of The Annie E. Casey Foundation, Ford Foundation, Open Society Foundations, Public Welfare Foundation, W.K. Kellogg Foundation, and Frank Sica.
Meet the 2012 Fellows
Recently, Lawrence Benito transitioned from Deputy Director to Chief Executive Officer/Executive Director of ICIRR. In his new role he will be responsible for running all facets of the organization. Lawrence has a proven executive track record and over 20 years of experience working with nonprofit organizations. As the Deputy Director...Get To know Lawrence
Eben Cathey joined TIRRC as the Communications Coordinator three months ago. He was born in Smyrna, TN and graduated in 2006 from Rhodes College in Memphis. Eben was awarded a Rotary Ambassadorial Scholarship to study in South Africa for a year, where he earned a master’s degree in Political and...Get To know Eben
Bill Chandler began with union organizing and community activism in the 1960s in Los Angeles. He participated in the 1965 grape boycott effort, organizing cross-border actions with Mexican and American workers to support the United Farm Workers in their efforts to improve conditions. Beginning in 1989 in Mississippi, he organized...Get To know Bill
Scott Douglas attended the University of Tennessee, where he co-founded their Black Student Union. Following work as an aircraft assembler, he held positions as Executive Director of the Southern Organizing Committee, Program Officer for the Partnership for Democracy Foundation, and the first Environmental Justice Organizer for the Sierra Club. Currently,...Get To know Scott
Michelle Fei, Co-Director of the Immigrant Defense Project, focuses her substantive work on community education and policy initiatives, including by designing and implementing educational programs about criminal-immigration issues, providing accessible analyses of legislative proposals, and challenging deportation programs. She successfully co-led the campaign to end “Secure Communities” in New York....Get To know Michelle
As lead organizer for the New Orleans Workers’ Center for Racial Justice Congress of Day Laborers, Jacinta Gonzalez helped establish and maintain a base of day laborers dedicated to building worker power, advancing racial justice, and mobilizing workers across race and industry in post-Katrina New Orleans. She was the lead...Get To know Jacinta
Sameera Hafiz, the Policy Director at the Rights Working Group (RWG), leads and coordinates coalition advocacy efforts and develops strategies to advance RWG's policy agenda. Prior to joining Rights Working Group, Sameera was a Senior Staff Attorney with Legal Momentum’s Immigrant Women Program, where she engaged in national policy advocacy...Get To know Sameera
Omar Jadwat is a Senior Staff Attorney with the Immigrants’ Rights Project of the American Civil Liberties Union. He focuses on combating anti-immigrant state and local laws, and other abusive immigration enforcement tactics; he was the co-lead counsel in the civil rights challenges to Arizona’s SB 1070 and numerous other...Get To know Omar
Cristina Jiménez is the Managing Director of the United We Dream Network. She is a co-founder of the Network and served as chair of the Board of Directors. Cristina has organized immigrant youth and workers for the passage of the DREAM Act, comprehensive immigration reform, and pro-immigrant legislation at the...Get To know Cristina
As the Political Director at America’s Voice, Adam coordinates their strategy to build a new majority for comprehensive immigration reform. Before joining America’s Voice, Adam worked with community organizations and national leaders on immigration reform at the Center for Community Change. Adam led the fight against Social Security privatization and...Get To know Adam