Six Organizing and Journalism Scholarship Winners On Their Way to Rowe

By Al Giordano



Here they are: Julia Ferrari of Ashuelot, New Hampshire, Bart Motes of Homestead, Florida, Beatriz Herrera of San Francisco, California, Ben Phillips of Austin, Texas, Tracy Annette Cox of Signal Mountain, Tennessee and Mike Tracey of West Caldwell, New Jersey.

These are the six scholarship recipients for the upcoming weekend conference, The Organizing of the President: Making Political Change in the Age of Obama, to be held at the Rowe Conference Center in Western Massachusetts, April 24-26.

Read their inspiring stories and more about the upcoming workshop at Narco News, where I recall a similar workshop there 29 years ago when a 20-year-old version of me met the American dissident and organizer extraordinaire Abbie Hoffman:

I’ll never forget the opening night of that 1980 workshop at the Rowe Conference Center when I met Abbie. As the attendees, one by one, introduced themselves, various of them seemed most interested in talking or asking about Abbie’s famous theatrical organizing efforts in the 1960s against the Vietnam War in the counter-cultural milieu that had him stopping the business of the New York Stock Exchange by throwing bags of dollar bills from the balcony onto the floor (launching a free-for-all among the traders) and as a defendant of the Chicago 8, which the ACLU called “the most important political trial of the century.”

“Hey, Abbie, I stole the book,” one said of his 1971 bestseller Steal This Book. “Hey, Abbie, how’s Jerry?” asked another asked of his estranged co-organizer-turned-yuppie Jerry Rubin. I thought, “oh lord, this is going to be a long and boring weekend.”

Suddenly, Abbie snapped at them: “I don’t want to talk about the 60s. I’m not into nostalgia. When I studied at Brandeis under Abe Maslow he taught me that nostalgia is just another form of depression. I’m here to talk about organizing in the present, about how we can fight the system and win.”

From that moment, my path in life shifted and almost 30 years later that was clearly for the best. Great things happen at Rowe.

Again, you can register for the conference at by clicking here.

The cost of the conference - which also features delicious meals and various comfortable lodging options - is on a sliding scale based on your annual household income.

We'll be similarly focusing on how to organize and win in the present. I can't say that I did anything more interesting this weekend than I know we'll accomplish on April 24-26 in Rowe.

Hope to see you there, Field Hands and other valued colleagues!



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About Al Giordano


Publisher, Narco News.

Reporting on the United States at The Field.

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