Search Sessions

To view individual panels, trainings and other sessions and to see who’s speaking, check out our searchable agenda below.

Wondering what a typical day at Netroots Nation is like? Check out our overview schedule.

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Federal Judges 101: Advocating for Good Judges from Pipeline to Confirmation

Now more than ever, we’re seeing the impact federal judges have on our day-to-day lives—and why it’s so important that we put as many great judges on the federal bench as possible who represent the diversity of our movements. But the federal judicial nominations process is weird and wonky, and it can feel hard to figure out where the key moments are to engage—and even harder to figure out how to get your people excited about the prospect or to ultimately ensure your movement is represented in Biden’s nominations. Building on decades of experience in the field, we’ll walk you through every step of the judicial nomination process and outline key opportunities and methods for engaging your community in the fight for fair courts.

Trainers: Cedric Lawson, Keith Thirion

Conversational AI and SEO for Changing Hearts and Minds

What if you could be more effective at reaching people earlier in their persuasion window at the exact moment they needed it? After a friend shared a piece of disinformation? Or as they look for answers after a major event? Learn how to leverage conversational AI and SEO to influence people during moments of personal persuasion windows while defeating disinformation and oppositional narratives that often dominate online spaces. We have the opportunity to leverage available tools and tech to make a significant difference in fighting the spread of disinformation and fascism by influencing the content and answers that people are consuming in the moments in which they’re most likely to be persuaded.

Trainers: Britt Bischoff

Using Time-tested Tactics to Evaluate and Boost Your Organizing

It’s no secret that organizing is hard work. Talking with people, creating relationships, and building leaders is what has, and will continue to, advance our movement. We’re at a pivotal moment where we know the importance of high-attention, short-term events like elections, voter registration pushes, and Census outreach. Our challenge is molding these moments into long-term power-building opportunities for our communities. This training will cover the basics of the “leaderful” organizing model—including assessments, one-on-ones and more—and how to bring them all together into an effective, power-building organizing program that identifies and develops leaders to help scale progressive movements.

Trainers: Harry Marino, Seth Pinckney

Designs on Democracy: The Roles and Responsibilities of Graphic Designers

As graphic designers and media makers, how can we best develop strategic visual communication to win campaigns and stay accountable to the leadership of community organizers? Join us for a panel discussion on best practices and case studies, and hear BIPOC media makers reflect on opportunities and challenges we face in doing this work.

Led by: Sabiha Basrai

Panelists: Yash Mori, Anthony Rogers-Wright

From Storytelling to Tech Policy Reform: Activism for Social Change

Right now in the digital civil rights space, there is an unnecessary divide between activists and policy experts. Join us for a facilitated dialogue about how Black, Indigenous, Latinx, AAPI and other people of color in activist and policy spaces can come together to enact social change through tech policy reform. Hear from policy experts and advocates of digital civil rights, privacy and grassroots voices who have experienced how communities grapple with disinformation, hate, conspiracy and other dangerous online forces. This discussion will outline how the burgeoning digital civil rights sphere is organizing our field to urgently shape policy debate, with a focus on the storytelling to policy pipeline. Together, we’ll explore the narrative power of storytelling as a tool for reform.

Led by: Rose Lang-Maso

Panelists: Jaya Savita Aiyer, Willmary Escoto, Ranada Robinson, Sumayyah Waheed

Inseparable Fights: Winning Economic Justice and Reproductive Justice for All

Women are most often the caretakers of their loved ones when needed—whether it’s for their children, parents, or spouses. With women being at the frontlines of reproductive status being increasingly threatened, it is more important than ever to organize and fight for laws and policies that protect our bodily autonomy and economic opportunity. Dive into economic justice solutions and discover how the fight for reproductive justice is inseparable from the fight for economic justice. Join our panel to hear from women with diverse experiences discuss the intersection of economic and reproductive justice.

Led by: Maheen Kaleem

Panelists: Yvonne Gutierrez, Carol Joyner, Yadira Sanchez

Why Are Asian American Voters Swinging Right—and What Can We Do About It?

Asian Americans are the fastest-growing population in both New York and the United States, and have been steadily increasing voter turnout over the last decade, including being a key voter demographic in the 2020 election win for Biden. But in the 2022 midterm elections in New York, Asian American voters took a turn right, representing a major part of Republican gubernatorial candidate Lee Zeldin’s close race against Democratic Nominee Kathy Hochul, and several key State legislature seats going Republican. This panel will examine the factors contributing toward this disturbing trend, and well as discuss best practices for engaging and educating Asian American voters.

Led by: Zara Nasir

Panelists: Sandra Choi, Carlyn Cowen, Jagpreet Singh

Building Multi-Racial Power (and Winning!) in Rural Communities

When many progressive leaders hear the phrase “rural organizing,” they imagine conservative white farmers. That is, at best, an incomplete picture that limits our ability to see the kind of progress we can make if we invest and organize. In reality, rural America is only slightly less diverse than urban America. And that gap continues to close as new immigration transforms many rural communities. In every region of the country, rural organizing includes working in communities that have a majority of Black, Indigenous, Latino or Asian residents. And in every region of the country, rural voters can play an important role in building the multi-racial majorities we need to build power, win elections and create change.

Led by: Michael Chameides

Panelists: Celina Culver, Danny Diaz, W. Mondale Robinson

Fighting the Campus Right: How to Organize Against Racist, Homophobic Activists

The right-wing youth ecosystem has long excelled at organizing collectively; messaging uniformly and training, training, training young activists—particularly on college campuses. Yes, their ideas are dangerous, radical and anti-democratic. But their ability to empower young activists and their deep-pocketed donors’ willingness to fund so-called ‘grassroots’ youth groups have put left-wing organizers at a disadvantage when it comes to engaging students in the business of democracy building. How did this right-wing ecosystem come to be, and how can progressives combat it? What tricks, tools and strategies can we use to fight their well-funded astro-turfing with real student activism?

Led by: Julian Epp

Panelists: Jakob Buckley, Mary Pat Hector, Kyle Spencer

Building Narrative Power for a Guaranteed Income

Narrative change is a buzzword that has garnered much media and funder attention in the last year; but what does it mean to be doing this work on the ground with and in communities? Organizers are building guaranteed income programs that directly challenge narratives of deservedness, transforming communities into advocates and inviting artists to tell these stories. Join us for a discussion about centering impacted people and stories, providing personal autonomy through direct cash, and why we need artists and culture makers in order to build narrative power.

Led by: Dorian Warren

Panelists: Marcela Diaz, Aisha Nyandoro, Richard Wallace

Atlanta Case Study: How Carceral Foundations and Corporations Enable Cop City

Since 2021, organizers in Atlanta have been fighting to stop the construction of a $90M police militarization facility on a former slave plantation and current watershed forest. Community members and organizations alike have expressed fears of escalating police violence and increased climate impacts as a result of the environmental degradation. But with the support of the police foundation and corporations, the city government ignored the 70% of community members who disavowed the project and instead voted to move forward with building Cop City. A diverse panel of leaders will share lessons, history and strategies for building and wielding the power of frontline communities of color in the face of philanthropic neglect, corporate whitewashing and political repression.

Led by: Jill Cartwright

Panelists: Kyle Bibby, Mariah Parker, Tiffany Roberts

Gun Violence is a Civil Rights Issue

Gun violence is a civil rights issue. Not only does gun violence disproportionately harm communities of color and other marginalized communities, we need the framework of civil rights to dismantle the immovable white supremacist resistance to gun policy reform. This panel will look at bias and hate, and how hate with guns elevates it into terrorism. From race-motivated mass shootings, police shootings and immigration, to faith, mental health and more, we will also look at how gun violence’s intersections impact different communities. Perhaps most importantly, this panel will take a hard look at the structural racism, bias and hate behind the extreme opposition to gun policy reform and explore how to begin dismantling it, opening up the way for sweeping change so we can finally curb our raging gun violence epidemic and begin building a future with safety from gun violence for everyone.

Led by: Gloria Pan

Panelists: Manjusha Kulkarni, Po Murray, Bethzaida Olivera Vazquez, Jamal Watkins

How Service Workers are Building Power—and Winning—in the Windy City

Since the pandemic, restaurant workers have been leaving the industry in droves. Research by One Fair Wage reveals that 53% of restaurant workers surveyed are considering leaving the industry, and 70% cite low wages and tips as their primary reason for leaving. In response to this staffing crisis, thousands of restaurants nationwide have raised their wages to get workers to attract and retain staff, but this measure is not enough. In Chicago, a worker-led movement is fighting for better pay and improved working conditions—and they’re winning. Join us to hear from the organizations and workers on the frontlines of this fight talk about how they’re winning wage increases in the Windy City.

Led by: Nakia Browner

Panelists: Saru Jayaraman, Antonio Lightfoot, RICHARD RODRIGUEZ, Nataki Rhodes

Feminist Buzzkill Live from Netroots Nation

Lizz Winstead (co-creator of The Daily Show, Founder Abortion Access Front) returns to Netroots with a live broadcast of Feminist Buzzkills, the podcast from Abortion Access Front.  Each day at noon, join Lizz, her cohost Moji Alawode-El (writer, activist and marketing lead at Abortion Access Front) and special guests, for a hilarious breakdown of the latest news from patriarchy’s evil trilogy of misogyny, white supremacy, and anti-abortion extremism. Your Buzzkills will make sense of all the madness, and with their expert guests, toss around some f-bombs and dive deep into the abortion stories and info being ignored by the mainstream media. So grab your lunch and watch a live broadcast of the Feminist Buzzkills pod!

Led by: Moji Alawode-El, Lizz Winstead

New Tools Showcase

Come learn about the latest voting, organizing, campaigning, make-the-world-a-better-place technology solution—and cast your vote for the best ones. The New Tools Showcase is a great way to get the inside story on new tools that are being designed and built, the impact they’re having on campaigns and organizations, and what they can do to help you become a more powerful and effective activist. At this event, select presenters will make a live pitch for their app, product, or technology. Attendees will vote on their favorites in each category and for an overall winner.

Want to pitch your product, feature or tool at Netroots Nation? Apply here. The deadline for submission is 8 pm EST on Monday, May 15th.

Submission categories:

  • Most Innovative Use of Existing/Conventional Technology
  • Best New Feature or Product (For established companies rolling out new features/products)

The New Tools Showcase is brought to you by Netroots Nation, New Media Ventures, and Higher Ground Labs.

Screening and Q&A: From the Hood to the Holler

For Kentucky, 2020 was an especially difficult year. The Covid-19 crisis compounded with the aftermath of Breonna Taylor’s murder highlighted systemic issues in a state that has suffered from stark inequality for decades. As one of the poorest states in the nation, Kentucky has some of the worst access in the U.S. to education, healthcare, and clean drinking water. It’s ironic that a state with some of the most disenfranchised people is represented by one of the most powerful politicians in the country: Mitch McConnell. Running in the Democratic primary for the U.S. Senate seat held by Mitch McConnell, Charles Booker attempted one of the biggest upsets in political history by challenging establishment-backed candidate Amy McGrath. From the Hood to the Holler follows Booker’s campaign across Kentucky, from the most urban to the most rural settings, with Booker and his team rewriting the campaign playbook. Instead of exploiting divisions, they lean into the idea that average Kentuckians have common bonds, united by their shared day-to-day fight to survive. Booker works to represent Kentuckians, both Black and White, who feel entirely left out of the political process. His message is simple: Whether you are from the city “hood” — like Booker — or the Appalachian “holler,” you are not invisible.

Panelists: Charles Booker, Pat McGee

Youth Caucus

We grew up totally online, and we use social media to drive the country’s political momentum, as needed. So we’re Digital Natives, but after saving democracy a few times, we’re overdue for an opportunity to talk about how a life lived online is really affecting us and the issues that matter to young people.

Daily Kos Caucus

Members of the Daily Kos community (and those curious about it) are invited to meet with site founder Markos Moulitsas and other staff at this caucus.

Mindful Meditation Moment

Need a break to regroup and recenter? Join us for a mid-day mindfulness moment to reset after the morning sessions and stay grounded headed into the afternoon.

Panelists: Reggie Hubbard

UnF**k Texas Caucus

Texas organizations and supporters talking about Texas.

Civic Engagement Workshop: Identifying Challenges and Solutions in Organizing

Successful organizing work has challenges—from voter turnout to down-ballot drop-off to volunteer recruitment. We need to address these challenges if we want to keep winning elections. In this hands-on workshop, participants will break out into small groups to ideate creative solutions to chronic civic engagement challenges, with an eye towards scalability, impact and cost-effectiveness. We’ll break down problems to focus on the barriers most amenable to creative solutions. This workshop is the place to explore ideas that previously seemed impossible. Participants will leave the session with new strategies to try in their communities.

Trainers: Ani Kelemdjian, Andrea Vasquez

Bridging the Gap Between Impacted Families and Community Activists

Heart-wrenching murders have sparked protests across the country. The need to eradicate state-sanctioned violence is at an all-time high, and developing a coalition of impacted families and grassroots groups is the order of the day to eradicate state-sanctioned violence. In this training, we’ll discuss how to empower and heal our communities impacted by police violence and how to affect policy change as a coalition that shares resources, information, and campaign strategy.

Trainers: Cat Brooks, George Galvis, Cephus "Uncle Bobby" Johnson

From Lead Ads to Outreach: List Building Using Meta Ads and Zapier

Running digital ads on Meta is one of the most cost-effective ways to grow your list and begin moving your audience from online to offline action. But too often, as organizers and campaigners, we get stuck in the weeds trying to keep data organized and follow up quickly, especially when we’re on a tight budget. In this ads-to-outreach crash course, we’ll cover first how to create easy signup forms with ads to help you generate the right leads for your campaign, how to design and move your leads with Zapier into your data system or an easy-to-use spreadsheet template to help your team manage follow-up and visualize data, and how to do effective outreach for your new leads.

Trainers: Giovanni Bravo Ruiz, Tamara Lunan

Stand and Deliver: Email Deliverability, Sender Reputation and You

Deliverability is the most important facet of any email program. You can have the smartest strategy, the most impactful creative and the most compelling ask; but none of that will matter if your email goes straight into the spam folder. But having a strong email sender reputation is harder than ever, especially with spam filtration becoming more rigorous, strenuous and algorithmic. How do you build and maintain a strong email sender reputation? How even is sender reputation determined? Does your CRM matter? Does your sender domain? What are some proven strategies to make sure your most impactful emails get to where they’re needed when they need to get there? This training will answer all of those questions—and more.

Trainers: Audrey Glaser, Damien Shirley

Social Media: How to Slay and Not Flop

Learn how to utilize social media in a strategic, effective and not cringey way. How does one communicate and more importantly, garner engagement on platforms on Instagram vs Twitter? Is it worth investing time into understanding opportunity on emerging platforms like TikTok? What is BeReal and should I be using it? The online space is continuously evolving and the way we use it should too. Participants from this panel will come away with the knowledge of how to be creative, authentic and harness the power of online platforms.

Trainers: Annie Wu Henry, Amelia Montooth

When We Fight, We Win: Abolish ICE at the State and Local Level

For more than a decade, organizers have been pushing back against ICE detention—and winning! Learn more about the state legislative campaigns, national coordination and local fights that have shut down multiple facilities and freed hundreds of people from cruel, degrading, often life-threatening incarceration. The legislative successes from our states, including Illinois, provide inspiration and instructions for anyone fighting for freedom and dignity for all. This panel will present on how, using an abolitionist framework, state advocates shifted strategies between the Trump and Biden administrations to end abuse and the local proliferation of ICE detention beds.

Led by: Luis Suarez

Panelists: Tania Mattos, Amy Torres, Fred Tsao

Mobilizing the Midwest Ahead of 2024

The 2024 presidential election is rapidly approaching, and mobilizing Black and Brown voters, including poor, immigrant and working-class communities, is critical to ensure their voices are heard. The Midwest significantly impacts the election, and efforts must be made to ensure high voter turnout. Using case studies from the Midwest (Detroit, Chicago, Milwaukee and rural Ohio), organizers who accomplished wins during the midterms speak about the importance of organizing young people and organizing in the Midwest, as well as thoughts/plans to solidify wins for 2024. This panel brings together experts and activists from four organizations to discuss mobilizing Black and Brown voters in the Midwest.

Led by: Anthony Baber

Panelists: Prentiss Haney, Cendi Trujillo Tena, Stevie Valles, Joanna Velazquez

How Influencers Can Help Win Elections and Make Issues Catch Fire

Influencers have a proven record of moving people up the ladder of engagement. But too often, progressive groups under-utilize this effective and low-cost strategy—or they do it wrong, with messaging that misses the mark. This panel will give attendees a clear understanding of how to sidestep social media’s traps and work with influencers to reach a campaign’s objectives. We’ll look at the role progressive social media influencers played in capturing the narrative in 2022 and in Spring’s Wisconsin Supreme Court race. We’ll also dive into best practices for harnessing the power of influencers to move minds and drive meaningful action, how to avoid mistakes, and how to quantify the metrics for success.

Led by: Stuart Perelmuter

Panelists: Schuyler Bailar, Charles Booker, Sabrina Collins-Childers, Michelle Lim

Organizing for Disability Justice Across Social Movements

We cannot achieve progressive change and liberation without including disabled people. The progressive movement often perpetuates ableism through workplace culture, communications/language or even in policy advocacy. Join us for a panel featuring organizers in the disability rights and disability justice spaces to focus on why all progressive organizations, campaigns and movement organizers must include disability in their work. We’ll talk about collective liberation, how and why disability justice intersects with every other social movement, and will give concrete suggestions for how progressive organizations can make sure to do every bit of their work through a disability justice framework. Often times, disability is an afterthought, but in order for progressives to win more elections, get more policy change and grow our movement, we must do a better job of including disabled people.

Led by: Dom Kelly

Panelists: Shafeka Hashash, Mia Ives-Rublee, Kehsi Iman Wilson, e.k. hoffman

Our Rights, Our Court? A Review of the Supreme Court's 2022 Term

After a tumultuous 2021 term which saw the Supreme Court overturn Roe v. Wade and take away a fundamental right for the first time in history, the 2022 term will again have the high court deciding cases at the heart of our democracy and rights. From voting rights and environmental justice to affirmative action and student loan debt forgiveness, our rights, opportunities and way of life continue to be significantly impacted by the only branch of government we cannot directly elect. Join us for a review of the Supreme Court’s 2022 term, its implications for the current state and future of civil rights and gender justice and what we can do to reform and take back Our Court.

Led by: Erinn D. Martin

Panelists: Bayliss Fiddiman, Brielle Green, Jennifer Nwachukwu, Pilar Whitaker

End Prison Funding and #StopCopCity: Financial Activism Strategies = Decarceration

After generations of community organizing, investors and national allies locked arms with the local Communities Not Prisons Coalition in Alabama to block a $630M deal to build three new mega prisons. Our win sent seismic waves through the financial industry and exposed a grave weakness in the prison industrial complex. And we’re taking these strategies to #StopCopCity in Atlanta. This is our story of how a directly impacted-led, multi-racial, multi-class campaign informed by those fighting on the inside, supported by investors and also Tea Party Republicans, won against all odds. We’ll walk through our playbook, get real about what worked and didn’t and share how our victory exposes a clear opportunity for us to win all across the country.

Led by: Matt Nelson

Panelists: Kamau Franklin, Christina Hollenback, Veronica R. Johnson, Nancy Treviño

Letters, Digital Ads and Ballot Guides: Things That Worked (And Didn’t) to Protect Democracy Downballot in 2022

After a decade of watching conservatives dominate downballot races, 2022 was a turning point. We flipped state legislatures, won governorships and won key ballot initiatives. We even defeated every single election denier running for secretary of state in a swing state. In many cases, the candidates and issues lower down outperformed the top of the ticket. How did we get there? First, there were some horrible candidates on the other side and great ones on ours. But across the movement, there was also an explosion of experimentation at the state and national level. And we learned a lot about how to ensure voters know and understand the stakes of every race.

Led by: Joe Hines

Panelists: Alex Alvarez, Bhavik Lathia, Emily Wasserman

How to End the Legacy of Economic Slavery: Close the Gender, Race and LGBTQ+ Pay Gap

The nation is at a tipping point when it comes to wage justice. Pay equity can be a powerful lever in the fight to rid today’s workplace of the remaining vestiges of wage slavery. Pay has always been a barometer of how we value workers. The longstanding gender, race and LGBTQ+ pay gap steals from families billions each year, harms communities’ ability to care for families, robs their wealth-building and artificially stifles their innovation in political and other spheres. Activists nationwide are meeting this moment. Hear from advocates promoting radical pay transparency through legal reforms, abolishing the subminimum wage and demanding the inclusion of migrant and part-time workers in efforts to end the pay exploitation of workers.

Led by: Noreen Farrell

Panelists: Cherita Ellens, Catherine Hinshaw, Saru Jayaraman

Data Storytelling: Building Your Messages with Data

What if you could use your data to better inform your creative campaigns? Content is most impactful when its strategy is built around a deep understanding of your audience. But, outreach strategy teams often struggle to plan around this complete picture and never fully realize the potential of their comms. Many communications professionals have an understanding of how to measure content performance with data but not necessarily how to leverage data in the development of their message. During this workshop, we’ll explore how teams plan audience experiences, and how to use marketing tools to maximize engagement. We’ll dive into use cases and how systems integrations can support those goals and leverage advanced capabilities like automation.

Trainers: Stefan Byrd-Krueger

Gimme More Data: A Conversation about Data Equity

Join us for a lively discussion answering questions about what data can do for you and what it can’t and what it takes to build good race and ethnicity models. We’ll cover how to get the most out of your data and where we need to go as a community to fill the gaps and build better, more equitable data sets. We’ll have a quick presentation, then a moderated Q&A with experts from the Catalist Analytics and Data teams.

This session is sponsored by Catalist.

Panelists: Hillary Anderson, Russ Rampersad

2023 Social Media Platforms: Beyond the Big 5

With the increased chaos in the Twitter world, it seems like every week new social media platforms are appearing on the scene. Which ones should you be using? How do you even decide which to try? Join us for this discussion of how to choose which platforms to prioritize—and get some useful information about the fediverse platforms (aka Mastodon), BeReal, T2 and more.

Trainers: Beth Becker, Rosemari Ochoa

Winning Jobs Narrative: Using Values Based Economic Messaging to Win

Working people decide who holds power in this country. The existential challenge facing Democrats is that we’ve been losing strength with these voters, particularly non-college voters, cross-race and geography. The Winning Jobs Narrative Project, launched in 2021, focused on creating effective, values-based economic messages that increase support for policies and candidates. Based on our research, we have created an easy-to-implement guide on how to communicate effectively with working people. We’ll go over the guide including specific messaging examples and a narrative checklist for you to implement in your own work.

Trainers: Bobby Clark, Melissa Morales

How to Build a Powerful Deep Canvass Program

Deep canvassing is the only field tactic that has been found, through extensive study, to change voter attitudes and behavior long-term, both in person and on the phone. Join us to learn more about the latest in deep canvassing and to receive training on the aspects of how to build a power-building and persuasion program. We’ll share key case studies that demonstrate how deep canvass programs have been built to create change and build power on a variety of issues and contexts.

Trainers: Drew Frye, Heather Schmucker

Your New AI Intern: How to Navigate Chat GPT for Texting

Who is texting me? Are they even human? Does it matter? Sure, texting is fast, efficient and cost-effective, but who is on the other end? Join us to learn how Chat GPT can change your texting skills, habits and campaigns. We’ll cover what AI tools are and how to use Chat GPT to your progressive advantage as well as tips and tricks to keep your message fresh and relevant.

Trainers: Lloyd Cotler, Tamilla Mirzoyeva

Prioritizing Accessibility in Advocacy

Prioritizing accessibility is critical to addressing ableism in both our advocacy and the systems we are working to change. People with disabilities make up 1 of 4 adults in the United States. But our country’s systems of communication, transportation, work and democracy were too often built without disabled people in mind and create barriers that exclude millions in our communities. Join this training on accessibility in advocacy to learn practical and meaningful ways to make your work more accessible and inclusive of the diverse disability community.

Trainers: Alexia Kemerling

We Got NOW! The Black Women Bench

Black women are a powerful electorate with the proven ability to decide elections. We now have the first Black woman Vice President, 26 Black women serving in the House and Black women mayors in seven of the nation’s largest cities. Despite those accomplishments, Black women still lack representation in important chambers of power. Only 4.9% of the U.S. House are Black women and zero serve in the U.S. Senate. Our panel of dynamic Black women including current and former elected officials, operatives and pundits will talk about the cadre of Black women doing amazing things in every sector of American politics and how we can uplift them and support their growth. The Black women bench doesn’t need to be built—it needs to be believed and bolstered.

Led by: Angela Angel

Panelists: D'Shawna Bernard, Tamia Booker, Stacy Davis Gates, Rep. Sonya Harper

Progress at the Ballot Box: Why Progressives Should Back Ranked Choice Voting

Ranked Choice Voting has exploded in popularity over the last few years, with over 62 U.S. jurisdictions currently using it and likely many more in coming years. This panel brings together local, national and international political and advocacy voices to explore why it’s time for the progressive movement to throw themselves firmly behind this reform. We’ll explore how Ranked Choice Voting helps women and minorities get elected, increases the power of advocacy organizations, encourages forward thinking policy, depolarizes politics and encourages coalition building, breaks the power of corporate lobbyists and authoritarian candidates, and encourages voter turnout by giving voters a real choice at the ballot box.

Led by: Rep. Maurice West

Panelists: Mike Griffin, Rachel Hutchinson, Alisa Kaplan, Matt Martin

Seeing Sexwork Within and Connected to Our Movements for Justice and Equity

Many movements rely on the experience, energy and leadership of individuals with past and present sex trade experience. Yet, sex worker voices are often maligned or silenced in these same movements, such as exclusion from Pride festival events, reduced presence in marches for reproductive rights or consideration in demands for racial justice. This panel brings together Chicago-based sex worker activists and leaders along with movement experts to share the impact of silence on the past, a snapshot of what is being done in collaboration today and how justice-oriented leaders can take action to welcome sexworker voices and join to address key sex workers’ rights initiatives, including decriminalization.

Led by: Shane Lukas

Panelists: Betty Devoe, Melodie Garcia, Kiah Morris, KoCo the advocate

Don't F**k Up Your Campaign Launch: Building Your Online Infrastructure Early

Building a successful online fundraising effort for your campaign starts long before day 1. In this session, you’ll hear from the folks behind some of the biggest digital campaign launches in the 2022 cycle—John Fetterman, Beto O’Rourke and Charles Booker—as well as early 2024 candidates like Katie Porter and Lucas Kunce. What should progressive candidates do before launch to ensure they’re ready to hit the ground running? How can we build a comprehensive launch plan that spans email, ads, texting, web, social and other channels? This panel will focus on how to capture attention, drive the narrative, generate huge fundraising returns and make the most of your campaign launch online.

Led by: Kasey O'Brien

Panelists: Marissa Fretes, Emily Harrison, Crystal Stanford, Eric Stern

Democracy in Jeopardy: Reining in Big Tech to Protect Election Integrity

In recent years, we have seen unprecedented attacks on the integrity of our democracy and the information ecosystem that supports it. Social media has been weaponized to manipulate countless voters and exploited by extremists to incite political violence. But there are straightforward design principles that tech companies can and must implement to restore voters’ confidence in the democratic system. With the Presidential election next year—along with dozens of major global elections in 2024—it is critical that social media companies take action now. Learn from advocates and activists who have been leading the fight to demand critical democracy-saving change from Big Tech.

Led by: Nashiha Alam

Panelists: Jelani Drew, Paul Gowder, Kaili Lambe, Zamaan Qureshi

App Workers Organizing—Online and Off—for Pay, Security, Safety and Power

App corporations like Uber and Lyft force their costs and risk onto drivers, mostly people of color and immigrants, while paying low rates and controlling working conditions through faceless algorithms. In this panel discussion, drivers and organizers will share how they are fighting for fair pay, safety and security in Chicago—and coordinating with drivers around the country to build long-term power. Panelists will explore new strategies and models for building worker power in the gig economy, share how workers are coordinating and forming relationships online (since drivers are always on the move and often don’t know their coworkers) and discuss how people who use these platforms can stand in solidarity with drivers.

Led by: Catherine Foley

Panelists: Lisa Lei, JC Muhammad, Ted Parks, Lori Simmons

Combating Political Cynicism in Black Communities

Young people and BIPOC communities are now the majority in the U.S. They are the political powerbrokers of the future, but cynicism with a system that has ignored their interests threatens their full participation. In 2020, 73% of Black voters felt their vote was ‘very powerful’. Today that number has dropped to 43%. This session brings together a diverse panel of experts at the forefront of polling, advocacy and media to discuss new messaging and power frames that civic leaders must employ to effectively mobilize BIPOC communities in politically divisive times. In an actual field test, their messaging was 49.53% more effective than conventional tactics.

Led by: Katrina Gamble

Panelists: Ranada Robinson, Terrance Woodbury

When You're Called a Terrorist: How Domestic Terrorism Laws Target Protestors and Activists

In January 2023, 19 climate justice activists in Atlanta were charged with domestic terrorism and other crimes for their protests against Cop City. Meanwhile, the Israeli government has designated human rights organizations as “terrorists,” and justifies its crackdown on Palestinian protestors as combatting terrorism. These trends threaten our movement work to build a better and more equitable world. Today, the “domestic terrorism” label is wielded against communities of color, even though the laws were pushed through to ostensibly quell white supremacist violence. This panel explore how domestic terrorism laws target anyone challenging police violence, environmental degradation and militarism.

Led by: Sandra Tamari

Panelists: Jehad Abusalim, Kamau Franklin, Diala Shamas, Nick Tilsen

How Minnesota Prepared for a Democratic Trifecta and Won Our Progressive Agenda

In 2022, Minnesota unexpectedly won a narrow Democratic trifecta with momentum from voters who were demanding action on reproductive rights, climate change, paid leave and strengthening democracy. While this trifecta was a surprise to many of us, we’d been preparing for this moment for 5 years. In 2017 a group of legislators and people-powered organizations started the Minnesota Values Project. We toured the state to listen to Minnesotans and build a shared agenda. In the only divided legislature in the country at the time, that agenda seemed impossible. But we built a robust inside/outside table committed to making that agenda a reality. Join us to hear more about how we made history in Minnesota in 2022.

Led by: Alexa Howart, Bethany Winkels

Panelists: State Sen. Liz Boldon, Rep. Cedrick Frazier, MN House Majority Leader Jamie Long, State Sen. Erin Murphy

2024 Starts Here: Supercharge Your Digital Fundraising with ActBlue and Sophie Ota

When we hear ’23, we think ’24. Join ActBlue and Sophie Ota, former Digital Director for John Fetterman’s historic U.S. Senate campaign, to examine recent digital trends, dive into crafting a strong fundraising ask, and explore fundraising tips and best practices. Participants will leave with an understanding of how to supercharge their digital fundraising programs for the 2024 cycle and beyond.

This session is sponsored by ActBlue.

Led by: Sophie Ota, Ruby Sarron

Enough for All of Us: Supporting New Arrivals and Long-term Residents with Solidarity, Justice and Abundance

The arrival of tens of thousands of asylum-seekers in major northern cities over the past year has sharpened the national debate on immigration and the federal resources that would be required to humanely address the domestic crises caused by years of harmful and extractive foreign policy.

Nearly ten thousand asylum-seekers have arrived in Chicago since Texas Gov. Greg Abbott first started sending buses in the fall of 2022; the majority have arrived by bus but thousands have also come of their own free will, in the hopes of finding a safer and more welcoming community.

Their arrival has strained the city’s shamefully under-resourced homelessness, public health, and public education systems. The hundreds of millions of dollars required simply to patch these systems rapidly has provoked painful outcry from long-term residents, many of them Black, who have suffered the brunt of these under-resourced and broken systems themselves for years prior.

In this panel, local officials at the city, county, and state level, together with frontline Black and immigrant organizers, will share the challenges they’ve encountered, their plans for modeling solidarity and abundance, and the lessons that other cities and regions can learn from these efforts.

Led by: Xanat Sobrevilla

Panelists: Claudia Guzman, Cristina Pacione-Zayas, Dixon Romeo, Byron Sigcho-Lopez

Friday Keynote featuring TN State Rep. Justin Jones

At every turn, the GOP is taking steps to silence those they don’t agree with and squash progress on critical issues like reducing gun violence, ensuring abortion access and protecting our democracy. Right wing extremists’ continued assault on our rights and democracy helped Democrats mobilize—and win—in the midterms, but the work isn’t over.
To counter their efforts, we must continue to organize, build power and develop a bench of progressive leaders up and down the ballot. In even the reddest of states, courageous, bold leaders and community organizers are stepping up to raise their voices, inspire change and mobilize their communities. In this keynote, Tennessee State Rep. Justin Jones, in conversation with Alicia Garza, will discuss his experience standing up for democracy, disrupting the status quo and demanding action. We’ll also hear from Daily Kos founder Markos Moulitsas Zuniga, Center for Popular Democracy’s DaMareo Cooper and Analilia Mejia and Cephus “Uncle Bobby” Johnson.

Panelists: DaMareo Cooper, Alicia Garza, Cephus "Uncle Bobby" Johnson, Rep. Justin Jones, Analilia Mejia, Markos Moulitsas

Chairman (Emeritus)'s Pub Quiz 2023: Getting The Band Back Together

It all began in Chicago in 2007, as an energized crowd waited for a beloved former Vermont Governor to complete his keynote so that everyone could boo Mother Teresa, or at least that’s how the New York Times initially reported it. It has changed little since those august (and August) days — form teams of 6-10 to answer trivia questions on politics, history, pop culture and Americana. There will be silliness, merriment, costumes, and bonhomie — because that’s the Chicago Way … unless you switched the samples, didn’t you, or my name isn’t Abe Froman, Sausage King of Chicago.

Led by: Adam Bonin

Fantasy Indictment League Panel & Comedy Hour

Allison Gill, known as AG from Mueller She Wrote and host of the Daily Beans, Jack, and Cleanup on Aisle 45 podcasts will be hosting a Q&A panel with former Watergate Prosecutor Jill Wine-Banks, former Federal Prosecutor Renato Mariotti, and Host of I Gen Politics and On The Move Victor Shi. We’ll discuss the indictments of Donald Trump, celebrate the rule of law, and follow it up with some political comedy as we all enjoy cocktails and mocktails. So make your Fantasy Indictment League picks and we’ll see you there!

Panelists: Allison Gill, Renato Mariotti, Victor Shi, Jill Wine-Banks, Lizz Winstead

Environmental Justice and Climate Action Caucus

Join us to discuss how the progressive movement build renewed and strengthened political power for environmental justice and climate action between now and 2024.
We’ll share how as a movement we’re collectively mobilizing the base, moving the persuadable middle, supporting downballot climate candidates, securing a pro-climate, pro-environmental justice Federal majority between now and 2024 to have the best shot of good policy outcomes in 2025 and beyond.

Networks & Nightcaps with Plural

Join Plural for an evening of networking and nightcaps on Friday, July 14th from 8:30-10:30pm in the Normandie Room. Engage with a diverse community of forward-thinkers, cultivate meaningful connections and discuss impactful initiatives. Be a part of the dialogue that shapes tomorrow. Space is limited, stop by the Plural booth for a drink ticket!

Black Caucus

Closed Caucus
Join the Black caucus at Netroots Nation 23 on Friday during lunch! We’re excited to share this space as an opportunity to build community with other Black attendees! We’re keeping the agenda light, but intentional and hope you can come through!

Morning Yoga with Reggie Hubbard

As activists we often get caught up in the perception of progress through busy-ness and neglect the necessity of focus and calm. Our morning flow will ground your day in peace and clarity before diving into the business/busy-ness of the conference. We’ll do light stretching, joint mobility enhancements, breathing and relaxation exercises.

Panelists: Reggie Hubbard

Campaign Disability: Making Your Social Media and Comms Accessible

Every day, progressive organizations and campaigns craft great content to reach folks in their community and fight for change. But, this content is too often not created with accessibility in mind. In this session, we will approach accessibility in communications through language, color and images. We will look at how all three come together in social media and work together to design a social media tool kit that is accessible to all audiences.

Trainers: Jessica Olson

How to Build Your Email List Ethically and Sustainably

Every campaign and issue-advocacy organization needs to recruit new donors, supporters and volunteers; and having an effective and ethical list-building strategy can save your team time, energy and money. In this training, we’ll discuss effective tactics you can employ to build your email list ethically and sustainably, including digital advertising, social media, internet communities, online actions, data modeling and even signup notebooks at your reception desk. We’ll also cover how to avoid common pitfalls like spam, list swaps and passive storytelling.

Trainers: Will Easton, Craig Grella

Golden Moments: Working with the Media to Enhance Your Campaign

Working with the media at the right place at the right time can take a golden moment to the next level and raise community awareness of your campaign in a massive way. In this training, you will learn strategies to communicate with the media, develop relationships and keep the media engaged with your campaign. We’ll show you how to create an effective media advisory and press release. You’ll also learn and practice ways to communicate your message to the media when you are interviewed for TV, radio, online or print media. This training is for those who are new to working with the media as well as experienced media relations practitioners.

Trainers: Laila Dalton, Bill Whitmire

Digital Ads from Soup to Nuts: Persuasion and Mobilization Campaigns that Win

Working on digital advertising can feel like playing whack-a-mole with new formats, channels and restrictions every cycle. In this training, we will review the benefits and limitations of the top channels and formats; discuss how to use audience research to build media plans and how to design creative that gets results; go over effective QA processes and show you how to report and optimize once your ads are running. We’ll also offer best practices from elections up and down the ballot and across the country. Every participant, whether they are “hand-on-keyboard” executors or strategists, will come away with a better understanding of what questions to ask and what to look for in strong digital ad campaigns.

Trainers: A.J. Carrillo, Michael OMeara

The Long Game: How to Organize and Win in Rural America

Too often, rural races (especially in red states) are under-resourced because they’ve been deemed “unwinnable” in one cycle. But we need to look at the long game. In this training, we’ll discuss how to develop and deploy messages that resonate and fundraising techniques that work in rural communities. We’ll cover how to identify progressive organizers and create a boots-on-the-ground approach for reaching rural voters. We’ll also talk about how to keep going in rural America if winning in one cycle doesn’t seem possible.

Trainers: Jess Piper

Fighting Digital Suppression of Abortion Information

Digital suppression and disinformation are posing an overt threat to the pro-abortion movement, which is increasingly relying on the Internet and digital tools to deliver services and disseminate information. With the overturn of Roe v Wade, a surging number of people are searching for abortion-related resources online. Concurrently, Big Tech companies and governments are suppressing accurate abortion information and preventing access to critical healthcare. In this panel, we’ll identify common patterns of content suppression and dissect the tools and strategies of those working to challenge the often biased and misinformed policies technology providers have adopted around SRH-related content. We’ll also discuss how we can hold Big Tech accountable for allowing the dissemination of accurate abortion information.

Led by: Imani Wilson-Shabazz

Panelists: Claire Crossett, Martha Dimitratou, Jessica Ensley

Why Care Infrastructure Wins (and the Fight Ahead) Impact Everyone

Over a dozen organizations have come together to push our nation to finally build the care infrastructure we all need; and while we’ve so far fallen short of the transformational change our country needs, the fact that we’re building momentum is undeniable. The end-of-year 2022 Congressional package included unprecedented victories: The Pregnant Workers Fairness Act, the PUMP Act for Nursing Mothers, $8 billion in childcare funding and more. Looking forward to 2024, we are doubling down on our victories to aggressively push for transformational policy change—and against Moms For Liberty. We’ll discuss how we can make policies like paid family/medical leave, childcare and fair pay key priorities in the 2024 elections.


The panel will have mimosas & glazed donuts to share!

Led by: Hillary Holley

Panelists: Melissa Boteach, Jocelyn Frye, Dawn Huckelbridge, Kristin Rowe-Finkbeiner

We Just Passed the Biggest Climate Bill Ever. Now What?

The Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 was touted by Democrats as “the biggest climate bill since ever.” And it’s got huge amounts of money in it. However, many environmental justice advocates believe that the IRA is a betrayal of deeply help principles of intersectionality. This panel will examine the IRA through the lens of the progressive movement: what went right and what went wrong? What can be done to fix it? What can be done to make it work for all Americans, from factory workers to kids on school buses? Will this signature achievement turn out to be a hollow victory?

Led by: RL Miller

Panelists: Daniel Blackman, Representative Sean Casten, Juan Jhong-Chung, Hebah Kassem

Immigration is a Black Issue, a Gender Issue and a Social Justice Issue

This panel brings together diverse, Black leadership working in the field of immigration to call on the progressive movement to see immigration as a Black issue, a gender issue and a social justice issue. The progressive world reacted in horror to the images in Del Rio, Texas in September 2021 as U.S. agents on horseback threatened and menaced people from Haiti seeking refuge at the U.S. Southern border. This panel will connect that moment to the history of anti-Black racism within the US immigration systems, highlight the contributions of Black immigrants and their families in the U.S., and demonstrate how seeing justice in immigration alongside other progressive-justice priorities will strengthen the progressive movement.

Led by: Guerline Jozef

Panelists: Patrice Lawrence, Ola Osaze, Seydi Sarr

Passing the Assault Weapons Ban in America

Since an AR15 was used by a gunman to kill 26 children and educators at Sandy Hook Elementary School a decade ago, assault weapons have been the weapons of choice for mass shooters. Assault weapons were used to kill AAPI dancers in a ballroom in Monterey Park, black shoppers in a grocery store in Buffalo, Latino children in Uvalde and Jewish parishioners in Pittsburgh. Weapons of war are being used to target all our communities. This January, Illinois passed the ban and lawmakers and advocates from other states are working to do the same. Join us for a discussion of how we can build momentum around banning assault weapons and mobilize voters around this issue in 2024.

Led by: Po Murray

Panelists: Robert Emmons, Jr., Rachel Jacoby, Felix Rubio, Kimberly Rubio, Angela Weber

Centering Race to Build Narrative Power

As both progressive & regressive movements have shown, we only win by strategically (re)claiming, deploying and making common our narrative of both problem and solution. Arguably, progressive movements don’t always have strong processes for cohesive online/offline engagement. In this training, we’ll explore how to strategically advance a progressive, intersectional narrative deeply connected to and working with communities to shift the political and ideological environments toward long-term structural change.

Trainers: Dr. Charlene Sinclair

#UnionsforAll: No Contract, No Coffee. No Justice, No Fries. No Standards, No Peace.

We’re in the midst of a historic uprising by workers. From Starbucks baristas and fast-food workers to gig workers and airline cleaners, workers are tired of corporations wielding all the power and they’re standing up to demand a voice on the job through a union with a force and clarity like never before. They are leading the charge on game-changing legislative approaches, rejecting a status quo that has never worked for working people, and in the process, inspiring other workers to unite together and demand a better future for their families and communities with unions for all. Come hear from workers who are leading the way on some of the most innovative and game-changing organizing and progressive legislative approaches with victories both nationally and in the states.

Led by: Kim Kelly

Panelists: Aryssa Burton, Rep. Jesús "Chuy" García, Mysheka Ronquillo, Joy Vaughn

Creating Joy and Setting Boundaries in Times of Resistance

During times of unrest and progress, oftentimes those most impacted by the issues find themselves working tirelessly personally and professionally to create, advocate and implement necessary change. However, this can not only lead to burnout about also barriers to progress. In order to create lasting change and truly build transformative power for a reflective democracy, organizers must be able to sustain themselves through setting boundaries and being intentional with creating communal moments of joy in order to withstand the onslaught of attacks attached to making a difference. In creating strategies for success, the mental health and wellbeing of the organizers is paramount, especially in such unprecedented times.

Led by: Miracle Jones she/her

Panelists: Farooq Al-Said, Andres Garduno, Dena Stanley (She/her)

US-China Policy: How Not to Repeat the Mistakes of the War on Terror

This panel examines how the U.S. approach to China has reproduced the patterns of racism and violence against vulnerable communities here and abroad that we saw in the post-9/11 era, and offers an alternative vision for the U.S.-China relationship. At a time when progressives are facing a growing Washington consensus in favor of a militarized, zero-sum approach to U.S.-China relations, this panel discusses how to describe the costs of that approach in human terms and make a powerful case for prioritizing diplomacy over escalation and xenophobia.

Led by: Stephen Miles

Panelists: Tobita Chow, Nancy Okail, Rep. Ilhan Omar

Ace in the Hole: How a Coordinated Campaign Mobilized Local Organizing and Top-of-the-Ticket Momentum to Win Big in Chicago

In the fall of 2022, Black labor leader and Cook County Commissioner Brandon Johnson was polling at just 3%, while Rahm Emanuel’s former campaign manager had just launched a super PAC to defeat the most progressive incumbents in City Council. Six months later, Brandon Johnson is now Mayor of Chicago, the progressive incumbents defeated their challengers, and the Progressive and Socialist Caucuses are larger than ever.

How did we do it? This panel will tell the story of what the Chicago Sun-Times called Brandon Johnson’s “ace in the hole”: a coordinated field program, made up of a slate of down-ballot candidates campaigning for Johnson, powered by volunteers from labor, community, and political organizations, and animated by a bold vision for Chicago.

Come hear from the organizers, campaigners, and candidates behind the strategy of running as a slate behind an unapologetically progressive platform–the political risk involved, the grassroots organizing required, the lessons learned, and the powerful potential for Chicago and around the country.

Led by: Matthew Luskin

Panelists: Candis Castillo, Graciela Guzman, Sandra Puebla, Willa Voss, Desmon Yancy

Neuro-Diverse Caucus

There are many reasons why political work might appeal to people with diverse neurotypes, but neurodivergent folks also face challenges while job searching and in the workplace. Many campaign staffers and political operatives are navigating unaccommodating interview and hiring processes, deciding whether or not to disclose (and when), how to ask for accommodations and which accommodations to ask for, and how to thrive in a field that is often unpredictable and prone to cause burnout.

This space is primarily intended for those with ADHD, Autism, OCD, sensory processing disorders, or any other folks possessing spicy brains, and we will center those voices. The caucus, however, will remain open so others may attend to listen, ask questions, and learn how to make their organizations or campaigns more inclusive for neurodivergent staff.

HUD vs. Chicago: How a Fight for Civil Rights Resulted in a Landmark Land-Use Settlement between HUD and the City

On October 2, 2020, People for Community Recovery, Chicago South East Side Coalition to Ban Petcoke, and Southeast Environmental Task Force filed a groundbreaking civil rights complaint. It exposed a pattern of three companies being relocated from the predominantly white North Branch of the Chicago River to the working-class and economically disadvantaged neighborhoods on the Southeast Side of Chicago. Join us to learn more about this historic agreement with HUD and the yearslong fight that paved the way for this outcome and a different way of doing industrial zoning in neighborhoods.

Led by: Ivan Moreno

Panelists: Trinity Colón, Robert Weinstock, olga bautista

Gun Violence Survivors Caucus

This caucus is for those who identify as survivors of gun violence to gather, support one another, and remember they aren’t alone.


Trainers Caucus

The trainers caucus will be an opportunity for progressive trainers to come together and discuss best practices and upcoming opportunities. Share experiences from the field, opportunities, and challenges.

Saturday keynote featuring Reps. Summer Lee, Delia Ramirez, Greg Casar, Maxwell Frost, Ilhan Omar, Pramila Jayapal, Jan Schakowsky and Jesús “Chuy” García

The 2022 midterms ushered another wave of young, diverse voices into the halls of Congress—with some of them making history on a number of fronts. Hear from four of the newest progressive members of Congress—Rep. Summer Lee (PA-12), Rep. Delia Ramirez (IL-03), Rep. Greg Casar (TX-35) and Rep. Maxwell Frost (FL-10)—about what work and life has been like for them in their first few months. In a conversation moderated by Rep. Ilhan Omar, they’ll talk about what their priorities are and how the progressive movement can support them as they continue pushing forward progressive policies in the coming months.

Then, you’ll hear from Rep. Pramila Jayapal (WA-7), Rep. Jan Schakowsky (IL-9) and Jesús “Chuy” García (IL-04) as they discuss the current state of Congress, their plan for moving progressive policies forward and the Congressional landscape looking toward 2024. Markos Moulitsas of Daily Kos will moderate.

Panelists: Rep. Greg Casar, Rep. Maxwell Frost, Rep. Jesús "Chuy" García, Rep. Pramila Jayapal, Rep. Summer Lee, Markos Moulitsas, Rep. Ilhan Omar, Rep. Delia Ramirez, Rep. Jan Schakowsky

Feminist Buzzkill Live from Netroots Nation

Lizz Winstead (co-creator of The Daily Show, Founder Abortion Access Front) returns to Netroots with a live broadcast of Feminist Buzzkills, the podcast from Abortion Access Front.  Each day at noon, join Lizz, her cohost Moji Alawode-El (writer, activist and marketing lead at Abortion Access Front) and special guests, for a hilarious breakdown of the latest news from patriarchy’s evil trilogy of misogyny, white supremacy, and anti-abortion extremism. Your Buzzkills will make sense of all the madness, and with their expert guests, toss around some f-bombs and dive deep into the abortion stories and info being ignored by the mainstream media. So grab your lunch and watch a live broadcast of the Feminist Buzzkills pod!

Led by: Moji Alawode-El, Lizz Winstead

Education Caucus

Public schools are under attack like never before by a highly coordinated and well-funded campaign conducted by the most powerful rightwing organizations. Come to this year’s Education Caucus to tell us what’s going on in your community, hear what’s happening elsewhere, and share ideas for how progressives can fight back and win.

Led by: Jeff Bryant

Screening and Q&A: Higher Power

Recreational cannabis use is legal in Washington, D.C. Recreational cannabis sales are not. Higher Power uses the stories of Black Washingtonians navigating this gray space while fighting to enter the legal cannabis industry to reveal the stark reality of 700,0000 disenfranchised American citizens and the urgent need for D.C. Statehood. It explores how the D.C. Home Rule Act of 1973 marginalized D.C.’s Black community. It profiles Black cannabis and wellness entrepreneurs serving the community through the gray market and Black-owned licensed medical dispensaries juggling the impacts of a global pandemic and competition from unregulated operators. Higher Power shows how the federal government’s control of the District has made a challenging process almost insurmountable, bolstering the case for D.C’s right to self-rule.

Led by: Queen Adesuyi

Panelists: Rafi Aliya Crockett, Dewey Ortiz, Bo Shuff

Mindful Meditation Moment

Need a break to regroup and recenter? Join us for a mid-day mindfulness moment to reset after the morning sessions and stay grounded headed into the afternoon.

Panelists: Reggie Hubbard

1/6: The Graphic Novel Book Signing

Written by Alan Jenkins and Gan Golan and illustrated by Will Rosado, 1/6 asks and answers the question: What if the January 6, 2021 Insurrection had been successful?

The graphic novel chillingly illustrates how close we came to authoritarian rule in America and the threats to our democracy that we still face. In the tradition of speculative fiction from George Orwell’s 1984 to Margaret Atwood’s Handmaid’s Tale to the Twilight Zone, it explores themes of autocracy, scapegoating, strategic disinformation, and more, all told through a compelling, character-driven story.

Drawing on real-life events, 1/6 travels the road that led from back-room meetings, white supremacist rallies, and the Four Seasons Landscaping parking lot to a violent attack on the Capitol that left several Americans dead and shook our nation to its core.

Meet the authors and get your signed copy between noon and 2 p.m. at Booth 417.

BAMEMSA (Black, Arab, Middle Eastern, Muslim, South Asian) Caucus

This is a space for communities who have been affected by Islamophobia in the US to discuss what our current priorities are and what fights we see coming up next, how to foster partnerships and strengthen structural aspectBAMEMSA (Black, Arab, Middle Eastern, Muslim, South Asian) Caucus – to talk through how to build solidarity within communities, what our current priorities are and what fights we see coming up next, and how to foster partnerships and strengthen structural aspects of the work.s of the work, and how to build solidarity within our communities.

Led by: Reema Ahmad, Firdaus Arastu, Zainab Chaudary

LGBTQ+ Caucus

Join us for an open conversation about building the political power of the LGBTQ+ and transgender liberation movement. How are transgender and gender expansive communities navigating the current political landscape, building alliances, and gathering a stronger base of co-conspirators? What policies can we address to grow our coalitions and build mutual support and solidarity? Why is a racial equity lens critical for co-liberation?

Expanding Justice: Organizing to Reform the Supreme Court

While Supreme Court justices are not elected, voters and activists have the power to organize and change the direction of the Court. As the Court’s conservative supermajority attacks our fundamental rights, expanding the Court has quickly entered the political mainstream as the surest way to restore ideological balance and save us from a generation of right-wing, minoritarian rule. Over 60 members of Congress and 130 organizations have endorsed historic legislation to add 4 justices to the Court. Featuring progressive champions inside and outside Congress, this panel will underscore how the progressive community can strategically organize to rebalance the court to save democracy and our rights.

Led by: Tristin Brown

Panelists: Rep. Greg Casar, Brett Edkins, Rep. Pramila Jayapal, Murshed Zaheed

Running on Climate: 2022 Lessons that Can Help Democrats Win in 2024

In 2022, the power of climate and other issue-based voting was on clear display, vital to winning up and down the ballot and to flipping swing seats and states. Democrats had the best midterm elections in the first term since the Kennedy administration because both the base and less-frequent voters turned out to vote on the issues. The climate and environmental justice crises are escalating—as are their importance to voters. What do the midterms teach about how and why to run on climate in 2024? How can Democrats best communicate climate achievements as well as urgency? Join us to discuss takeaways from 2022—and why leaning into climate issues is a winning strategy for 2024 and beyond.

Led by: Michelle Deatrick

Panelists: Garlin Gilchrist II, Rep. Jan Schakowsky, Ebony Twilley Martin

An Overdue Reckoning of Structural and Systemic Racism in Policing

Black lives matter. I Can’t Breathe. Hands Up Don’t Shoot. No Justice, No Peace. These powerful phrases are rallying cries for fair-minded Americans seeking to live up to one of this country’s core principles: equal justice under the law. Since this nation’s founding, Black Americans have struggled, fought and died for the right to be free and equal citizens. At a powder keg moment in American policing history, Black fathers from the frontlines will share a fly-on-the-wall look deep inside their intimate personal state as they struggle to confront structural and systemic racism in abusive policing that led to the murder of their children. Nowhere else will you have the opportunity to hear and witness the power of their experiences.

Led by: Rashad Timmons

Panelists: Michael Brown, Cephus "Uncle Bobby" Johnson, Andrew Joseph, Kevin Tarver

Check the Roots: The Root Causes of Gun Violence & How AGs are Responding

Attorneys General wield considerable power and influence throughout the country and within their respective states. As the nation continues to grapple with gun violence, including mass shootings and other senseless acts of violence, AGs nationwide are leading efforts to address this crisis. AGs are focused on utilizing every tool at their disposal to reduce violence, including interventions at all levels. This panel will discuss the work and impact of AGs in addressing gun violence, as well as strategies and approaches for gun violence reduction and prevention.

Led by: Kyle George

Panelists: Rob Bonta, Keith Ellison, Rev. Brenda Mitchell, Kwame Raoul

Beyond Land Acknowledgement: Moving from Optical Allyship to Action

After hearing a land acknowledgment statement, do you ever find yourself asking, “Now what?” Land acknowledgment is growing in popularity, yet it often functions as optical allyship. Since releasing a guide to land acknowledgment in 2019, Native Governance Center (NGC) has received hundreds of inquiries from people wanting help. Most of these inquiries have focused on verbiage, rather than action steps for supporting Indigenous communities. In response, NGC created a new action-planning approach. In this session, you’ll learn why land acknowledgment can be problematic. You’ll engage in small and large group activities to learn how to design meaningful action steps. Finally, you’ll have a chance to begin creating your own action plan.

Trainers: Wayne Ducheneaux, Jessica Glidden

Standing in the Gap: Organizing Joy When Policy Fails

When policy fails to support thriving communities, particularly in neighborhoods being gentrified, how can social justice organizations step in? Using a case study in East Liberty, Pennsylvania, we’ll talk about how to center joy and community in the midst of efforts to displace and exclude marginalized people from changing neighborhoods and communities.

Trainers: Jasmine Green

How Digital Organizing Can Turn Community Organizers into Community Influencers

While a lot has been said about what happened during the most recent midterm elections in Texas, we have not heard enough about what grassroots organizers in Harris County did to galvanize the second-largest midterm election turnout in 30 years. Join us to learn four critical digital organizing tactics that will turn community organizers into community influencers to make a historic impact in the next election.

Trainers: Jess Moore Matthews, Chris Valdez

How to Organize Online (Even if You Don't Want to)—and Win

In 2020, every facet of U.S. life changed and organizers were forced to take their offline efforts online. Three years later, where have things landed? In this session we’ll follow the work of ACCE-LA (The Alliance of Californians for Community Empowerment–Los Angeles), a grassroots organization that was forced to go digital in 2020. Despite all odds, they tripled their membership, elected their people into office and won a city-wide eviction moratorium. This case study will trace the journey this member-led organization took from in-person, direct actions to flooding public comment spaces on Zoom, organizing communities on WhatsApp, and creating digital spaces that support real relationships and wield enough force to move decision-makers.

Trainers: Joe Delgado, Shireen Nori

The Anti-Abortion Playbook is Coming for Us All

The anti-abortion playbook is being used as a tool to erase other rights and freedoms, including threats against the transgender community. Look no farther than Missouri —the first state to ban abortion just minutes after the Dobbs decision. We’ve long said what happens in Missouri never stays in Missouri. Now, the Missouri legislature is using the same tools—sham investigations, character assassination hit pieces and inflammatory disinformation—to eliminate transgender health care and rights. Abortion and LGBTQ+ advocates will talk about the interconnectedness between the fight for reproductive freedom and all intersections of justice, liberation and human rights.

Led by: Bonyen Lee-Gilmore

Panelists: Shira Berkowitz, Pamela Merritt, Yamelsie Rodríguez

How Labor Can Help Build a Progressive Media for the 21st Century

In the past three years, interest in labor organizing has exploded, along with public attention. High profile organizing campaigns and strikes are constantly in the news. Yet the once-robust labor media has declined for decades alongside unions themselves, leaving the movement today dependent largely on mainstream reporters unfamiliar with the labor movement. In our panel, four veteran labor journalists—who are themselves rooted in the values of the movement—will talk about how to build, grow and maintain a new and thriving progressive media for the 21st Century. The panel will discuss how the newly energized labor movement can work together with progressive journalists to build a strong independent media that can scale.

Led by: Hamilton Nolan

Panelists: Maximillian Alvarez, Miles Kampf-Lassin, Kim Kelly

Hide and Seek with Gen-Z: Identifying Platforms to Effectively Engage the Youth

To bring the next generation of organizers into the progressive movement, we need to speak their language, engage on their platforms and elevate their ideas. Four young leaders coming out of the YouTube and Twitch streaming space will speak about their experience forming new action-focused political communities that reached hundreds of thousands of voters in the midterm elections. These groups built upon the existing excitement among political streamer audiences and offered them the tools and knowledge to organize. They’ll share their thoughts about how individuals and organizations across the progressive movement can tap into Gen-Z’s energy and passion, utilizing this generation-native model.

Led by: Jack Gardner

Panelists: Cameron Jones, Sam Laude, Kristian Park, Alberto Pena

Care Over Cost: Organizing People Hurt by Insurers to Win Medicare for All

To win Medicare for All, we need a long-term strategy to defeat our corporate opponents in the healthcare industry. We need to win victories for people harmed by the healthcare industry now, but we must do so in a way that decreases the power and profits of the private health insurance industry while strengthening public programs. In this panel, we’ll discuss a strategy to build power and set the conditions to win Medicare for All, as well as how we can organize people directly impacted by corporate profiteering and grow our movement.

Led by: Aija Nemer-Aanerud

Panelists: Eva Bell, Matthew Covington, Callie Gibson, Ken Whittaker, mark hall

Housing Advocacy for All: Coordinating Local, State and Federal Efforts

Housing is an issue that affects everyone. In New York, the housing crisis impacts upstate and downstate residents differently; but legislation to protect tenants, increase assistance programs and create/retain affordable housing happens on the state, local and federal level. This panel will delve into the many challenges of tackling such a broad and complicated issue, including how to build a unified coalition, how to coordinate priorities and messaging, how to expand outreach and advocacy to all communities and how to keep the focus on the issues that matter most. We’ll also explore ideas that are gaining more momentum, like Land Banks and Community Land Trusts, and how they can shape the future of housing for all.

Led by: Danielle Mowery

Panelists: Gabby Ross, Byron Sigcho-Lopez, Ritti Singh

Winning on Public Safety: How Progressives Can Combat GOP Narratives on Crime

Republicans attempted to make crime the centerpiece of the midterms, spending millions on ads that smeared Democratic candidates with race-baiting attacks. While the GOP underperformed, they will likely return with similar messaging in 2024—and these midterms showed us which strategies work and which ones don’t. In this session, political and policy experts will describe how to construct a winning coalition for progressive public safety reform. We’ll outline actionable policy proposals and communications tactics to help voters understand the need to reimagine public safety. We’ll also provide strategies on actualizing policies to improve racial and economic justice in every aspect of our criminal justice system.

Led by: Roshni Nedungadi

Panelists: Stephen Clermont, Stacy Davis Gates, Alicia Garza, Insha Rahman

A Chance to Come Home: Remedying Injustices of the U.S. Immigration System

For decades, the U.S. immigration system has deported hundreds of thousands of people, permanently separating them from family and community. In some cases, the deported had strong legal grounds for remaining in the U.S. In others, the government abused its discretion, imposing detention and deportation in grossly unfair ways. The unjustly deported, who now seek to return and reunite with loved ones, include U.S. military veterans, civil rights activists, former DACA recipients and a disproportionate number of Black and Brown immigrants. Across the world, journalists, filmmakers, politicians and activists are calling on the U.S. to redress the injustices of its immigration system—to give the unjustly deported a chance to come home.

Led by: Nayna Gupta

Panelists: Hector Barajas, Rep. Jesús "Chuy" García, Alex Rivera, Xanat Sobrevilla