Joshua Kahn Russell is a campaign strategy and non-violent direct action facilitator with the Ruckus Society, an Actions Coordinator with 350.org, and has trained thousands of activists. He is an organizer, helps design protest actions, and does group facilitation with change-makers from around the world. He has worked for the last 11 years with a wide variety of organizations, movements, and campaigns.
Joshua has written and edited numerous books and manuals, most recently Beautiful Trouble with Andrew Boyd (O/R Press 2012), and Organizing Cools the Planet: Tools and Reflections to Navigate the Climate Crisis, with Hilary Moore (PM Press 2011), and the forthcoming Lines in The Sand, (Between the Lines Press 2014). You can see his other publications here. Recently, Joshua was a lead trainer for the Tar Sands Action protests against the Keystone XL Pipeline. He has helped campaigns win against banks, oil companies, logging corporations, and coal barons; worked with a wide variety of groups in a breadth of arenas, from local resiliency projects, to national coalitions, to the United Nations Climate Negotiations.
Currently, Joshua is coordinating the program for Global Power Shift, a youth climate convergence of 500 leaders from 135 countries, in Istanbul Turkey.
Joshua is a regular writer for Znet, Grist, Rabble.ca, WireTap, and It’s Getting Hot In Here, and his articles have appeared in Yes! Magazine, Left Turn Magazine, Peacework Magazine, Upping the Anti, and Z Magazine, among others.
His artwork has appeared on the cover of books authored by INCITE! Women of Color Against Violence, and Noam Chomsky, smartMeme, and in the Celebrate People’s History poster series – you can see his art here.
TRAININGS, TALKS, & WORKSHOPS:
Joshua is available to facilitate retreats, strategic planning sessions, or consult on a longer term basis. He offers workshops on a wide variety of topics, and all curriculum is custom designed to meet your group’s goals. Workshops can last from a few hours to a few days or even weeks based on your groups needs and capacity. Trainings Joshua has offered in the past include:
- Training for Trainers
- Social Movement Strategy
- Campaign Strategy
- Action Strategy & Design
- Organizing 101, 102, 103
- Media & Message development
- Introduction to Ecological Justice
- U.S. Social Movement History
- Intro to Non-Violent Direct Action / Civil Disobedience
- Non-Violent Direct Action / Civil Disobedience planning and design
- Student & Youth Organizing
- Solidarity: navigating privilege and tools for allies
- Building your group Vision
In addition, Joshua is available to give a speech, talk, or host a multimedia discussion on a range of topics, including:
- Theories of change in social movements
- Building our power: Social Movements in the 21st Century
- What’s Left? Learning from the Right
- Civil Disobedience: storytelling and learning from the past
- Direct Action Stories across movements
- Solidarity: supporting communities on the frontlines of coal and oil extraction
- Organize!: different organizing models from around the world
Joshua has trained, given talks to, & facilitated numerous groups including:
Act Everywhere; American Jewish World Service; AW@L; Bard University; Beehive Design Collective; Bioneers; Bloomsburg University; Brandeis University, Business Ethics Network; Campement d’Action Climatique Quebec; Canadian U.N. Youth Delegation; Central Valley Air Quality Coalition; Climate Justice Action; Climate Justice Now!; Delaware Riverkeeper Network; Don’t Frack Ohio, Dream City Collective, Earth Quaker Action Team; Energy Action Coalition; Firestorm Cafe; Fossil Free Coalition; Gasland; Greenpeace USA; Greenpeace Semester / Organizing Term; International Center for Ethics, Justice, and Public Life; Justice League; Mobilization for Climate Justice – West; Mountain Justice; New School Radical Students Union; Peaceful Uprising; Power Shift; Power Shift Canada; Puente Movement AZ; Rainforest Action Network; Regional Center for Healthy Communities; Rising Tide North America; Ruckus Society; Santa Cruz Strike Committee;Student Environmental Action Coalition (SEAC); Students for A Democratic Society; Tar Sands Action; Tikkun Leil Shabbat; United Nations International Youth Delegation (YOUNGO); United Students Against Sweatshops, United Students for Fair Trade, United States Coastguard Academy,U.S. Social Forum, Yale University, 350.org Southeast Asian Youth, 99% Spring
“Joshua Kahn Russell and Hilary Moore’s manual will be useful to all who want to make change creatively and peacefully in our brutal times.”
—Dr. Vandana Shiva
“Joshua Kahn Russell is a dedicated, very effective organizer who operates with his eye on the bigger picture of building mass movements for structural change to society. I have seen him at work in a number of arenas and many would benefit from his insight and experience.”
—Boots Reilly, The Coup
“A little while back I felt myself weaving in and out of the sad adult pattern of throwing in the towel on humanity. Then I watched Joshua Kahn Russellget up in front of crowds of allegedly apathetic young music fans night after night, and systematically win them over to the sane side of the climate debate. He may help you pull your grown-up head out of your adult ass.”
—Chris Hannah, Propagandhi
“In an atmosphere heavy doomsday predictions and fear, Organizing Cools the Planet is a breath of fresh air. Joshua Kahn Russell and Hilary Moore weave together stories and organizing tools to create a vision for practical transition amid the climate crisis. Their booklet confronts pressing questions of our time.”
—Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz, Founding Director, Indigenous World Association & author.
“I watched Joshua Kahn Russell and his colleagues train more than a thousand people over two weeks to get arrested in civil disobedience. Not a one participant broke discipline; as far as I could tell every one of them was deeply satisfied with the training they got. It was hard duty, but given how often I’ve watched Joshua come through in the past it didn’t surprise me a bit.”
“There is no task more urgent than to organize a mass popular movement to deal effectively with the looming environmental crisis. The barriers are high, the forces opposed powerful. All the more reason to dedicate ourselves to the kinds of efforts outlined in Joshua Kahn Russell and Hilary Moore’s booklet.”
“As the climate crisis becomes increasingly unignorable, our movements must learn to navigate a rapidly changing and high stakes political landscape. Our times demand we think bigger, push harder, and reimagine the possibilities for 21rst century movement building. This potent little pamphlet is a great place to begin the conversation. Authored by two visionary young leaders who share their personal struggles and hard earned lessons from organizing at the intersection of justice, ecology and change, Organizing Cools the Planet is required reading for anyone who gives a damn about the future. Tune in for some indispensable analysis, provocative thinking and a healthy dose of people-powered optimism.”
—Patrick Reinsborough, co-founder smartMeme Strategy & Training Project