Facing Race: A National Conference coming to St. Louis, MO — November 20-22, 2024! #SaveTheDate

Causten Rodriguez-Wollerman

Partnership Director | Demos

Causten is passionate about strategy and people. With his ten plus years of social change work he has worked at the local, state and national level leading campaigns and managing leadership training programs. He is a skilled trainer, facilitator, and political campaigner. As Senior Project Manager at Wellstone Action, he executed specific projects that increase the skills and capacity of organizations and individuals across the progressive movement. He developed his campaign skills and expertise as the Leadership Programs Manager and Organizer at the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force.

Presentations from Facing Race 2018

Unifying the Progressive Story: A Narrative to Unite People of Color and Working Class Voters

The progressive movement stands divided. Some insist we mobilize the white working class, others the new American electorate—and both camps seem to regard these choices as mutually exclusive. This division is unnecessary and debilitating. The right builds popular support for politicians beholden to billionaires by using dog whistles to stoke anxiety around race—demonizing black lives, undocumented immigrants and Muslims. To counter this, progressives can and must speak simultaneously and forcefully to the connections between class and race. A robust conversation about race is critical to converting the aspiration of a “New American Majority” into an energized and cohesive force. The question is how to engage around race and class in ways that build solidarity, reduce division and scapegoating, and create a viable foundation for both electoral and policy victories. Therefore, Demos embarked on a narrative project In order to shift the tide of racially and economically divisive politics that strategically uses racism to divide the working class and poor so that a few can gain. We wanted to uncover a narrative that would help people envision a multiracial country in which everyone has economic opportunity. Our Integrated Race & Class Narrative Project started with the premise that we can rebut the right’s faux populism and white nationalism with a potent new story. Join us to learn, discuss and practice strategies on how to unify constituencies across race and class in your electoral campaigns, grassroots organizing, media outreach, and legislative advocacy to mobilize a multiracial coalition and increase progressive governing power.

Speakers: Anika Fassia, Causten Rodriguez-Wollerman