If you’re new to Netroots Nation, you can get a sense of what the event looks like by checking out our schedule overview. Below you can view panels, training sessions, keynotes and other content as sessions and speakers are confirmed. You also view a PDF of our printed program here.

If you’re looking specifically for the schedule grid, please click this link to view it.

Highlights for Netroots Nation 2014 include:

  • A keynote featuring Sen. Elizabeth Warren (and more speakers to be announced soon)
  • 80 panels and 40 hands-on training sessions
  • A progressive film Screening Series
  • An Ignite themed keynote, featuring fast-paced talks from movement leaders
  • A kickoff party sponsored by the Michigan Senate Democrats and the DLCC
  • A closing night party sponsored by Alliance for American Manufacturing
  • A special Tech Tools Shootout and reception sponsored by Google, New Media Ventures and Netroots Nation
  • Annual events including our pub quiz, comedy show and candidate reception and much more!

Order by:

2020 War Room: Inside the Secret Plan to Beat GOP Gerrymandering

Democrats won 1.7 million more votes, but Republicans won the majority in Congress. You’ve heard that story before. Now join us for an inside look at the Democratic strategy to fight back. Legislators, campaign strategists, and nationally renowned redistricting experts will walk us through how Democrats can use cutting-edge data and modeling, strong progressive messaging, and old-fashioned shoe leather to fight back against GOP gerrymandering today and then turn the tables on Republicans in 2020.

Led by: Tom Bonier

Panelists: Stacey Abrams, Jim Ananich, Michael Sargeant

48217: What One of the Country's Most Polluted Zip Codes Can Teach Us about Environmental and Digital Justice

With only 8,200 residents, southeast Michigan’s 48217 zip code is sandwiched between I-75 and giant industrial polluters. Smokestacks billow above schoolyards in River Rouge, MI, where more than 1.6 million pounds of hazardous chemicals are released into the community every year. The zip is part of Wayne County, which has the highest number of pediatric asthma cases in the state, combined with the highest state population of those living in poverty. Clean air and water violations abound the physical space, coupled with barriers to affordable cyberspace, threatening many residents’ ability to survive in a digital age. Learn about the interplay between environmental and digital justice in one community, from fighting for equal access to the internet, launching community media labs, and improving air quality.

Led by: Dr. M. K. Dorsey

Panelists: Rhonda Anderson, Jenny Lee, Michelle Martinez

A Fresh Perspective: Lessons From a Crazy Congress

From endless Obamacare repeal votes to the IRS “scandal” to the disgusting politicization of Benghazi, the 113th Congress has been a sight to behold. Hear from two progressive Members of Congress serving their first term on how they persevered to move the ball forward on progressive issues despite a conservative majority bent on picking useless political fights. Come to this panel for an inside look at how progressives are fighting the good fight in this House of Representatives—and what it will take to break through and win on important issues.

Led by: Sabrina Siddiqui

Panelists: Rep. Dan Kildee, Rep. Alan Lowenthal, Rep. Mark Takano

A Labor of Love: How the American Labor Movement is Securing LGBT Equality

There are few alliances that have been as productive as that of the labor and LGBT movements. Even before the rise of large national LGBT organizations, the American labor movement worked to attain LGBT equality. Bayard Rustin and Harry Hay were trade union members; Harvey Milk was elected with the support of labor unions; and the negotiating table has been one of the most effective ways to obtain equal benefits and access to healthcare. What can be learned from this alliance? How did cooperation between movements contribute to changes for LGBT Americans? What strengths did the labor movement bring to the fight for LGBT Americans?

Led by: Amanda Terkel

Panelists: Kate Childs Graham, Shane Larson, Roland Leggett, Rep. Mark Takano

A Public Option for Simple Banking for Underserved Communities

Over 68 million Americans have little or no access to traditional financial services. Banks have abandoned low-income communities, turning them over to predatory businesses like payday lenders, check-cashing stores, and pawn shops. Reports show this costs the poor more than $2,400 a year in interest and fees. We can do better by creating a public option for simple banking services—ATM access, money transfers, and small loans. We can run these services through the Post Office, as is done in many other countries, providing needed postal revenue, increasing access, and saving the poor billions. This simple maneuver would provide multiple benefits, from modernizing our payment system to protecting against fraud to boosting the economy to even ending recessions. This panel will examine the potential benefits of public options for banking, giving abandoned communities access to financial services and leveling the playing field.

Led by: David Dayen

Panelists: Mehrsa Baradaran, Annette LoVoi, David Williams, Chuck Zlatkin

Agitating for Change: Russian Media and the Thirst for Information

Access to information is crucial for an informed and democratic society, and obtaining important government information is getting more difficult in Russia, where the state is beginning to clamp down on media in the wake of the turmoil in Ukraine. The professional and citizen journalists there face common enemies—corporate special interests with unending financial resources, procedural hurdles, and ever-changing political climates. To combat this, how are journalists in Russia leveraging social media and other online tools for action? What lessons can be gleaned from efforts in the US and other countries around the world? And how can we work together to support the work of our progressive allies across world?

Led by: Libby Rosenbaum

Panelists: Artem Chlegov, Ivan Pritulyak, Dimitrie Ross, Elena Vasilieva

Ain't I an Organizer? How Women of Color are Central to the Future of Feminist Activism

Coined by Kimberlé Crenshaw over 15 years ago, the term “intersectionality” has become a mainstay in discussions of successful feminist activism. Yet many publications, campaigns, and organizations still struggle to incorporate a feminist lens in their work, let alone center women of color in their gender analysis and activism. What does a truly cohesive, progressive, and anti-racist movement for gender equality look like in 2014? How can we create a broad-based progressive movement that centers the experiences of women of color and galvanizes the base successfully? Panelists will explore the concept of an intersectional approach to gender and identity by relaying stories and data from their own political organizing work in a range of fields including education, media, health, and wellness.

Led by: Samhita Mukhopadhyay

Panelists: Lori Adelman, Ileana Jimenez, Salamishah Tillet, Jamia Wilson

Analyzing Ourselves: New Research on the Experience of Working in Politics

As a movement, we’ve used data, analytics, and research to optimize nearly every outward-facing aspect of campaigns. Now we’re turning the microscope on ourselves. What salary inequalities exist within the world of professional politics, and what should we do about it? Is there bias in who gets hired for particular roles? Are microaggressions creating a hostile work environment that causes disproportionate numbers of women and people of color to turn away from politics as a career? This panel will present quantitative and qualitative research about what it’s like to work in the progressive movement. We will discuss what the numbers mean, what we can do about them, and what further research is needed.

Led by: Amelia Showalter

Panelists: Kevin Collins, Julie Martinez Ortega, Ethan Roeder, Lena Tom

Ask a Sista: Black Women Muse on Politics, Policy, Pop Culture and Scholarship

This session was a big hit in 2011, 2012, and 2013 with a panel of progressive Sistas who take no prisoners and give you the critical, political analysis you deserve. Our point of departure is that African-American women make up a two-thirds of the black Democratic voting bloc and have exercised their votes, judiciously in both 2008 and 2012. Their votes are consistent but their programs are routinely underfunded and voices disproportionately unheard. How can progressives expect the party to flourish without understanding this key voting bloc and their major influence in American culture? This panel session will shed light on African-American progressive women and their views on politics, policy, pop culture, and scholarship to address how the Democratic party can mobilize them for 2016 and beyond.

Led by: Cheryl Contee

Panelists: Jamila Bey, Jenifer Daniels, Kimberly 'Dr. Goddess' Ellis, L. Joy Williams

Back to Basics: Democratic Politics in an Era of Divided Government

The session will explore what the current and near-term equities are in Washington and what that means for progressive goals. This will include political and substantive reviews of the House and Senate, discussion of known goals such as immigration reform and climate change mitigation and where they stand, and a candid conversation about how the “pragmatic progressive” should strategize for the next few years vis-a-vis Washington. Which issues can be advanced in Washington? On which issues is defense crucial for now? Which issues are best left for state-based fights for the time being? Which are political, legal, or both? The next two election cycles will be challenging, and in between a lot can happen (good and bad). Let’s survey where we are, where we need to go, and what we can do with some difficult cards (but a lot of talent) on the table.

Led by: Reema Dodin

Panelists: Jocelyn Moore, Louisa Terrell

Beyond Livable Wage: Creative Strategies to Get to the Root of Inequality

Around the country, progressives are pushing for much-needed increases in the minimum wage toward a more realistic “livable wage.” However, what else can we do to change the debate to focus on some of the root causes of inequality? From the exploitative practices of a company like Walmart to the money big corporations pull out of state and local treasuries, the practices of the biggest corporations are directly driving median wages down and concentrating income. Our panel will look at some strategies to highlight these practices and empower progressives to fight back.

Led by: Brian Young

Panelists: Rep. Keith Ellison, Larry Mishel, Erica Smiley, Saket Soni, Jamie Way

Beyond the A/B Test: Building Better Fundraising Tests with Behavioral Science

While A/B optimization of emails and landing pages has been widely adopted by progressive organizations and candidates, often these tests compare very different creative rather than use behavioral science insights to drive research questions. This panel will feature three progressive organizations leading the way here. ActBlue will discuss a series of tests that show how organizations can use behavioral economics insights to shape the choice sets of suggested donation amounts to maximize landing page performance. ProgressNow will present the results of a multi-million-person email test that illustrate the impact of anchors and social norms in shaping donor behavior. And the DNC’s digital team will describe how “foot in the door” non-fundraising asks in email can increase donations.

Led by: Kevin Collins

Panelists: Conen Morgan, Julia Rosen, Patrick Stevenson

Black Feminism's New Wave

This panel will discuss the current climate in Black feminist writing and activism, with specific attention paid to the role of digital media as tools for activism and collaboration.

Led by: Feminista Jones

Panelists: Imani Gandy, Shafiqah Hudson, Mikki Kendall, Jamie Nesbitt Golden

Bro-Choice? Where Do Men Fit in the Reproductive Justice Movement?

Men have shown up as allies for women in politics since suffrage, but issues of reproductive, sexual, and family health continue to be seen as primarily the burden and responsibility of women. The limits of this frame have become glaringly apparent: the “war on women” frame leaves out the LGBTQ community, lacks a racial justice analysis, and most importantly, reifies outdated ideas about gender. It’s time to rethink our frame and engage men—not as allies, but as stakeholders, whose sexual health, bodily autonomy, and ability to form and care for their families is deeply impacted by the same systems of reproductive oppression.

Led by: Raquel Ortega

Panelists: Travis Ballie, Renee Bracey Sherman, Felipe Sousa-Rodriguez, Kashif Syed

Call to Action: Measurable Change in the Digital Space

Organizations are often clear about goals and strategic focus for the change they hope to achieve—until it comes to the digital platform. Getting a website up and generating social media followings can seem like a big win, but how much of it has a real impact? Join us for a discussion on how to move beyond the website to activate and engage audiences through the lens of the Black Male Achievement Movement. Leaders will offer their learnings on crafting a message, developing a platform, getting the word out, and how they decide on next steps as they collectively work to shift the nation’s perceptions of black men and boys and close the opportunity gap for good.

Led by: Rashid Shabazz

Panelists: Natasha Logan, Alexis McGill Johnson, Michèle Stephenson

Campaigning Down Under: Three Case-Studies That Will Make You Go "Crikey"

Australians may ‘speak funny’, have compulsory voting, and recently elected the “Motor Sports Enthusiast Party” to our Federal Parliament. But we also have plenty of lessons and creative tactics to share. Hear about the national advertising campaign by GetUp (Australia’s equivalent to MoveOn) to call-out the bias in Rupert Murdoch’s local media empire, and their competition offering ‘gold’ for registering to vote; meet the country social worker who helped launch and manage a remarkable local Independent campaign that won in a highly conservative area; and learn about the work of Australian labor unions building unique alliances to protect public services and education.

Led by: Rebecca Wilson

Panelists: Denis Ginnivan, Erin McCallum, Mark Reed

Can Technology Save Democracy?

We live in a world were technology has changed the political landscape for campaigns, but when it comes to voter turnout one could argue that it hasn’t made much of an impact. Is it possible, or a pipe dream? Join Queer Women Who Tech to debate the issue.

Led by: Leanne Pittsford

Panelists: Jenna Lowenstein, Aisha Moodie-Mills, Kat Skiles

Challenging the Dramatic Under-Representation of Women and People of Color in Political Office

What would it look like if the people who hold political power actually reflected the communities they are elected to serve? What structural barriers prevent the United States from having elected leadership that reflects the full range and strength of our diversity? This panel will look at how systemic barriers like money in politics and negative gate-keeping networks operate to keep women and people of color from elected office. The under-representation of these groups undermines our democracy and contorts policy agendas but has rarely been directly targeted for structural change. Most efforts to diversity candidates for elected office lift individual candidates over walls through recruitment, training, and other forms of direct personal support. This panel will explore what it would look like to directly attack the walls that result in a system in which white men make up 32% of the U.S. but nearly 80% of Congress.

Led by: Jenifer Fernandez Ancona

Panelists: Cristobal Alex, Sayu Bhojwani, Ariel Boone, Glynda C. Carr

Changing the Meaning of a Super PAC: Ready for Hillary

Is a grassroots Super PAC an oxymoron? Learn how Ready for Hillary is utilizing the rules for Super PACs to engage grassroots support, expand digital engagement, and drive technology development to build a movement for a potential 2016 Hillary Clinton presidential campaign. Also learn how Ready for Hillary is working on the ground in 2014 to support Democratic candidates up and down the ticket.

Led by: Mike Liddell

Panelists: Eli Kaplan, Nickie Titus, Kaiya Waddell

Civil Disobedience Gets Results: Lessons from the Immigration, Labor and Climate Movements

Across the progressive movement, activists and organizations are embracing civil disobedience on a large scale as a tactic to escalate pressure in our most crucial fights—and getting results. We’ll share how progressives have leveraged the commitment of activists to increase pressure on decision makers.

Led by: Becky Bond

Panelists: Rae Breaux, Cristina Jimenez, Eric Schlein

Climate Justice Against Koch's Tar Sands from Detroit to New York

The Koch brothers’ petrochemical empire is poisoning the world and the American political process. From Detroit, home of the Koch petcoke mountain, to Sandy-ravaged New York City, where David Koch is the richest resident, leading climate justice activists will speak about how they’re fighting back against the corrupt fossil-fuel barons and building a better future.

Led by: Brad Johnson

Panelists: Marion Berger, Lisa Graves, Malisa Rivera, Mariah Urueta

Combating Online Hate, Bigotry and Discrimination

A convergence of activists, social media companies, and victims of hate are collaborating to figure out the best way to protect communities from vitriol that turns from hate speech to mobilized campaigns. While the Internet has revolutionized progressive change, it has also rallied others to encourage bigotry, brutal killings, mass protests against a community’s presence, and violence based on hate. This online fear-mongering and bigotry has become increasingly organized and is particularly evident in efforts targeted at vulnerable communities such as immigrants, Muslims, women who speak up about their rights and abuses, LGBT individuals, and African Americans. This panel sheds light on how online hate translates to inequality, disenfranchisement, and life-threatening violence for innocent Americans across the country—and what you can do to change the tides.

Led by: Madihha Ahussain

Panelists: Kalia Abiade, Rebecca Lenn, Anthony Nieto

Common Core: A View from the Middle

The Common Core State Standards—expectations of what children should know and be able to do by the conclusion of each school year—have been adopted by 40 states and DC because CCSS has the potential to provide a high-quality education to all students regardless of socioeconomic status. Student achievement and a quality education for all students cannot be a partisan issue. But the success of CCSS hinges upon how well each state implements the standards. Some states are working with all stakeholders and providing the resources for teachers to do it well and other states just aren’t.

Led by: Ruth Conniff

Panelists: Lily Eskelsen Garcia, Kiersten Gawronski, Marla Kilfoyle, Melanie Waltz

Corporate Welfare and Tax Loopholes vs. Public Services: Who's Winning?

Cuts to education, transit, housing, food assistance, public safety, infrastructure, and pensions are driving the political debate in communities as across the country as politicians claim that government spends too much. But cutting or eliminating such programs harms many taxpayers, especially those in underserved communities. We’ll explore the billions of dollars given away in the name of “economic development”—money that could be invested in vital public services. Discover how to use online resources to uncover inequities in your community and how to reframe the story to show how this shift in economic priorities is robbing many of vital services and perpetuating the rich-poor income gap.

Led by: Mesha Williams

Panelists: Greg LeRoy

Creating a Beloved Community: Visionaries for an Inclusive Detroit

Many reports about Detroit focus on decrepit houses and factories, constructing a narrative of ruin porn that promotes a curiously titillating mix of nostalgia and dismay. Others promote the Gilbertification of the downtown, suggesting that just one more massive giveaway to fund yet another stadium will turn the trick. Recently the governor insinuated that the real problem with Detroit is the people who live in it, suggesting that attracting high-tech workers (read: non-African-Americans) would guarantee rebirth. Our panelists are both more modest and more ambitious in striving to create a liveable, sustainable, post-industrial city with the people already here. They base their projects in Detroit’s neighborhoods, drawing upon their experience of day-to-day life in a seriously deprived environment, materially speaking. They strategize about food justice and affordable utilities; they care for the needy; and they sponsor creative projects for the young. Come learn how you can be a progressive ally for Detroit.

Led by: Gloria (Aneb) House

Panelists: Will Copeland, Shea Howell, Malik Yakini

Daring to Internet While Female

Most women have experienced some kind of online harassment, bullying, or threats because of what they say or simply because they dare to be female while using the internet. It’s a shared experience that leaves many discouraged, afraid, or silenced. Since the law hasn’t caught up to technology and the anonymity of the internet offers offenders protection, it’s up to us to find ways women can have successful professional and personal online personas while still feeling safe.

Led by: Adria Richards

Panelists: Krystal Ball, Kimberly 'Dr. Goddess' Ellis, Robin Marty, Zerlina Maxwell, Lizz Winstead

Detroit, Rocked City: How the Bankruptcy Led to Retirement Attacks that Could Spread Nationwide

Join us for a discussion on one of the biggest factors in income inequality: the right-wing assault on retirement security. Learn about the Detroit bankruptcy and what it means for the economic security of public service workers nationwide. We’ll examine how the attacks on pensions, Wall Street’s 401(k) scam, and the right-wing war on Social Security fit together. And we’ll keep it real with a retired Detroit city worker who’s now up a creek without the paddle he’s been promised, a Wall Street watchdog who has been investigating Wall Street’s favorite pension gutter, and an expert on the Detroit bankruptcy and the implications it will have for workers and retirees across the country.

Led by: David Sirota

Panelists: Gwendolyn Beasley, Reesa Kossoff, Diane Oakley

Does God Love Women Who've Had Abortions?

For too long the abortion debate has been too far removed from thoughtful, or even respectful, conversation on the real lives and experiences of women. The tidal wave of overly intrusive and harmful anti-abortion legislation is often justified by religion, so much so that one might assume that to be religious is to be anti-choice—and conversely, that one cannot be both a person of faith and a supporter of abortion access. But the truth is, just like women’s own lives, the role religion plays in reproductive health and rights is complex, nuanced, and deserves to be heard. This panel is for anyone interested in the intersection between abortion access and spirituality.

Led by: Emma Akpan

Panelists: Michelle Martinez, Carolyn Meagher, Amber Phillips, Kashif Syed

Domestic Workers: Leaders for a New Economy

Women are supposed to lean in—to have it all—but how, when women’s work is undervalued and underpaid? Join us to find out how our movement can support a new women’s economic agenda that will move us toward an economic system that values all women’s contributions, from high powered CEOs to domestic workers. Nation-wide, domestic workers have been leading the fight for new labor protections for women and families. In 2013, domestic workers saw victories at the federal level with minimum wage and overtime protections for home care workers, and in the states with Bills of Rights wins in California and Hawaii. How can we turn these victories into a national movement with the power to change the way we value women’s work? We’ll strategize with the National Domestic Workers Alliance, Hand in Hand: The Domestic Employers Association, and the California Domestic Workers Coalition.

Led by: Rosana Reyes

Panelists: Sandra Fluke, Alicia Garza, Nenette Manalo, Lenore Palladino

Ending Voter Suppression and Building Progressive Leadership in Congress: Why DC Statehood Matters for Liberals Now

For the first time in 20 years, there is a bill before Congress to grant statehood to Washington, DC, a majority-black city with a population greater than that of either Vermont or Wyoming. The proposed legislation preserves the Constitutionally-mandated federal district but restores basic democracy to DC’s 646,000 citizens, who pay local and federal taxes, fight and die in U.S. wars, and fulfill civic obligations but are denied their right to vote at the federal level have limited control over even local legislative and budgetary affairs. This session will explore the relationship between the DC statehood and black political empowerment movements since the Civil Rights Act of 1964. We’ll also discuss the role of voting representation for DC in moving progressive legislation through a divided Congress and debate different perspectives and strategies for effectively moving forward on achieving statehood for the disenfranchised citizens of Washington, DC.

Led by: Martin Austermuhle

Panelists: Shadow Rep. Nate Bennett-Fleming, Josh Burch, Kimberly Perry, Khadijah Tribble

Everything You Need to Know to Run a Progressive Startup You Learned at this Panel

Taking an organization from zero to thriving isn’t easy. Come hear from progressive startup founders across the spectrum of for-profit to non-profit, and early-stage to late-stage: Berim, Upworthy, SumOfUs, UltraViolet, and the Good Fight. We’ll share tricks and tools we’re using to make it. Each of us has learned a ton over the past months and years, and we want to share those challenges and strategies with you—if only so you don’t make the same mistakes we did.

Panelists: Sara Haghdoosti, Taren Stinebrickner-Kauffman, Shaunna Thomas, Ben Wikler

Expanding Online Voter Registration

Our antiquated voter registration systems present a key barrier to youth participation. The good news is there is some momentum for updating our voting systems. By almost every measure, the online voter registration was a success in 2012. In just one month before the voter registration deadline, 839,297 Californians registered to vote or updated their voter registration online. This panel will share some of the lessons learned in California about dos and don’ts with online voter registration implementation and how to maximize its effectiveness to boost participation, particularly among younger voters.

Led by: Sujatha Jahagirdar

Panelists: Catherine Hazelton, Emily Rusch, Ashley Spillane

Fighting Fake Science: When the Right tries to Derail Your Movement with Misinformation

This panel will discuss right wing tactics—from climate change deniers to misinformation campaigns on birth control, sex ed, and abortion—that use fake science to try to attack progressive movements. Panelists will present successful strategies devised to counter the right’s attacks, and identify best practices on how to respond when the right comes at you with fake science.

Led by: Travis Ballie

Panelists: Peter Sinclair, Felipe Sousa-Rodriguez, Erika West

Fighting for Democratic Practices after an Emergency Manager Takeover in Michigan: Report from the Trenches

Since taking office in 2010, Rick Snyder, the corporate-friendly Republican governor of Michigan, has installed 10 so-called “emergency managers” (EMs) to take the place of elected mayors, city councils, and school boards. In 2011 Snyder and the Republican legislature broadened the powers of EMs and essentially replaced local democracy with their political appointees. In 2012, Michigan voters rejected Snyder’s version of the law, but the legislature simply ignored the vote and passed an identical law. The majority of those deprived of their local representation live in cities where people of color are a majority of the population. Despite this profoundly anti-democratic takeover, residents and elected officials keep resisting this abrogation of the rule of law. This panel will feature activists from across Michigan who continue the struggle to regain their city’s autonomy.

Led by: Alec Gibbs

Panelists: Brandon A. Jessup, Karen Majewski, Claire McClinton, Nayyirah Shariff, Maureen Taylor

Fighting for Truth and Universal Healthcare

Obamacare has finally been fully implemented, but the fight to successfully reform our healthcare system has a long way to go. Come hear detailed analysis of how we got here, what challenges we currently face, and what remains to be done.

Led by: Paul Song

Panelists: Kesha Ram

Fighting for Voting Rights in the 21st Century

This year we’re fighting for voting rights on both the federal and local levels. A new bill updating the VRA is moving through Congress, and states are working locally to modernize elections or combat restrictive bills. However, there are two key components we must continue addressing to ensure the future of voting rights: felony disenfranchisement and youth engagement. Last year, the New York Times estimated that while black turnout reached record numbers, it was still suppressed do to the shear amount of African American citizens who couldn’t vote because of a prior felony conviction. Nationally 4.4 million citizens who are no longer incarcerated are blocked from the ballot box due to similar laws. There is also an increased attack on the youth vote in states like North Carolina and Florida. This panel addresses what needs to be done not only to protect these votes but also encourage turnout.

Panelists: Terry Ao Minnis, Gregory Moore, Hester Wheeler

From Underdog to Top Dog: Organizing for Impact While Small and Mighty

Listen, we know everyone wants to nerd out about list sizes, email tests, and unsubscribe rates. And let’s be honest: a lot of the assumptions about successful online organizing focuses heavily on growing massive lists. But what if your organization doesn’t have 8 million members—or even 8,000? What if you don’t have unlimited resources to run unlimited tests? Don’t fret! Because even if you’re a small dog, you can still hunt. Hear from organizers who have run campaigns with small petitions, moved nimbly with a staff of three, and built connections that grew networked power between online and offline groups.

Led by: PaKou Her

Panelists: Kirin Kanakkanatt, C. M. Samala, Felipe Sousa-Rodriguez, Nelini Stamp

Headline Risk and Social Cost: Hitting the 1% Where it Hurts

Headline risk remains one of the largest realms where progressives can force change on the masters of the universe. This session will examine the assets society has against the 1%, and how we can create a true social cost to both the 1% and their enablers. We will also examine what it looks like when that leverage is brought to bear—beyond simply targeting election cycles.

Led by: Alexis Goldstein

Panelists: Max Berger, Nicole Carty, Nelini Stamp

Hunger First: The Importance of Food Security in Detroit, and Why We're so Hungry (for Change)

Detroit natives can easily point to any number of challenges to food security in their community. Whether it’s the lack of fresh and affordable options or the insidious targeting of our kids by fast food outfits, the “healthy meal” is under attack. This problem isn’t unique to Detroit: these are problems facing communities of color and children across the country. Join us to explore the importance of—and threats to—food security in Detroit and lessons we can apply to broader campaigns around food justice. This panel will tell stories you’ll remember, offer lessons you can use in your work, and further weave us together as a community of food activists.

Led by: Dream Hampton

Panelists: Monica Patrick, Tepfirah Rushdan, Kadiri Sennefer

Innovative Field Strategy: How Social Network Theory and Visualization Technology Can Achieve 2% Flake Rates (and Progressive Victories)

Over the past few cycles, we’ve seen the importance of innovative field programs in successful campaigns. The most effective campaigns have understood the increasing synchronicity of digital and field as an ever-increasing percentage of the electorate engages meaningfully online. The best campaigns have utilized lessons learned from Social Network Theory, the analysis of how people interact in the context of real life social networks, and applied them with incredible results. This session will begin with an overview of applicable tenets of Social Network Theory and will highlight innovative campaigns of the last cycle. Special attention will be paid to a recruitment and confirmation system developed by McAuliffe Fairfax County Regional Field Director Colin Hicks that allowed his team to shatter recruitment goals and post an incredible 2% flake rate during GOTV.

Led by: Max Stahl

Panelists: Dennis Hughes, Justin Strekal, Monique Teal

Iran: Diplomacy or War?

This panel will discuss the Obama administration’s effort to achieve a diplomatic solution to the Iranian nuclear issue, with attention to recent progressive grassroots successes in beating back efforts by Congressional hawks to foreclose non-military options.

Led by: Matt Duss

Panelists: Ali Gharib, Heather Hurlburt, Sen. Chris Murphy, Ilya Sheyman

Let's Get Ready to Rumble! Q&A on the 2014 Midterms

Before you know it, November will be upon us. Come join the editors of Daily Kos Elections for an in-depth Q&A about the 2014 midterms. There are NO presentations, NO PowerPoints, and NO speeches—just your questions (and our answers) on any race in the nation you care about. Progressives need to be well-informed about the races that matter most so we can deploy our limited resources effectively. So if you want to know more about what’s going to happen this fall and what it will mean for Democrats, Republicans, and the entire country, stop in!

Led by: David Nir

Panelists: Carolyn Fiddler, Arjun Jaikumar, David Jarman, Jeff Singer, Steve Singiser

Living Our Values: Building the Movement We Deserve

We’re great at preaching, but do we practice? It’s time for ALL progressive movement employers to commit to fair labor practices and gender and racial diversity. Come and learn how and why to build a movement that reflects our values.

Led by: Mikey Franklin

Panelists: Christopher Honey, Mariah Minigan, Angela Peoples, Taren Stinebrickner-Kauffman

Low-Wage Workers Went on Strike. Now What?

More and more low-wage workers have started organizing and have gone on strike in the last few years. People who would never have considered themselves “labor activists” are now protesting outside their local Walmart or clicking “like” on the President’s call for a higher minimum wage. As alt-labor movements grow up, how do we measure their success? What does winning look like for these workers and their communities?

Led by: Nathan Henderson-James

Panelists: Bene’t Holmes, Dolly Martinez, Shyquetta McElroy, Lenore Palladino

Manufacturing a Middle Class with Quality Jobs

Rebuilding our manufacturing base is the key to building a strong economy for the future and putting millions of people back to work in good middle class jobs. Manufacturing has long been the backbone of our economy and over the past 30 years as companies have moved our factories overseas we have seen economic turmoil and an increase in the rich/poor gap. In 2013, Senate Democrats unveiled a strategy designed to kick start the manufacturing sector and create more manufacturing jobs in the United States. A manufacturing strategy for the United States is long overdue. The panel will discuss the impact this could have on income inequality and explore whether this strategy can stabilize the middle class.

Led by: Joe Sudbay

Panelists: Laura Clawson, Rep. Dan Kildee, Scott Paul, Durwin Royal

Marijuana Arrests: The Gateway to Mass Incarceration

Every 48 seconds someone is arrested for marijuana possession in the United States. Most of these arrests are of people of color, despite the fact that white people use and sell marijuana at higher rates. In this panel we will explore how the drug war and biased policing practices fuel marijuana arrests and, in turn, mass incarceration. We will discuss how in New York City, the Marijuana Arrest Capital of the World, communities are organizing to end marijuana arrests and reverse the collateral consequences haunting the nearly half a million New Yorkers now living with criminal records. We approach our work from an explicit racial justice perspective—and will share how we insert ourselves into the white-male-dominated marijuana reform world—to message our campaign, build leadership of directly impacted communities, and pass innovative policies and laws to end racist marijuana arrests in New York.

Led by: Alyssa Aguilera

Panelists: Shenna Bellows, Kassandra Frederique, Shapriece Townsend

Money in Politics: Candidate Forum

Join us for a frank discussion on money in politics in the context of the 2014 election, as both a movement building exercise and opportunity to raise awareness of the candidates running on the issue. Candidates on the panel will discuss fundraising challenges that come up while running on the premise getting money out of politics, as well as the pros and cons in fixing this critical issue. Audience members will have a chance to hear what they will do if elected to advance this issue.

Led by: Marge Baker

Panelists: Shenna Bellows, Derek Cressman, Zephyr Teachout, Rick Weiland, Kelly Westlund

Mothers of Murdered Children: Moving from Grief to Action

We know the names of Trayvon Martin, Hadiya Pendleton, and Jordan Davis, but what of the thousand of children murdered every day in America’s cities and towns? This session will bring to life how Detroit mothers who’ve lost children to violence are channeling their grief to propose policy changes, increased funding, and attention from mayors, school board officials, and others to make a difference—and make sure other families don’t face these same tragedies. In addition to families with first-hand experience, attendees will hear from policy staffers on how to advocate most effectively with city and county municipalities.

Led by: Dana Vickers Shelley

Panelists: Brenda Hill, Natalie Motyka, Andrea Perkins Clark, Catherine Phillips

Moving Beyond Petitions: How Organizations Can Harness Distributed Campaigns to Build Progressive Power

What does it take to turn an online petition into a full-fledged, multifaceted, effective campaign that builds progressive power? We’ll discuss what we’ve learned about turning petitions into winning campaigns and developing progressive leadership at scale. We’ll also have a conversation about opportunities and challenges with petition-based distributed organizing, and offer thoughts on how you can integrate distributed member-led campaigns with staff-led campaigns for maximum impact.

Led by: Jackie Mahendra

Panelists: Anna Galland, Hope Wood Moore, Murshed Zaheed

Network Depth: How the Love Factor is Creating Change

From the leaders taking action against Walmart to domestic workers to organizations emerging in the shared economy, the love factor—people taking care of each other—is a factor in changing systems. Join us for a discussion of why love is important for scaling large base building efforts. We’ll look at best practices in places where communities of leaders are caring for each other and take a look at what happens when people don’t get along.

Led by: Marianne Manilov

Panelists: Devita Davison, Alicia Garza, Carla Goldstein, Girshriela Green


Netroots Nation 2017