Request Linda Stout as a Speaker at Next Your Event
Are you hosting an event with activists who work against injustice and toward building a more inclusive community for social change? Interested in having Linda speak to and inspire your audience? Let us know by using this form.
Topics include (also see our Trainings)
- Stop the Silence: Bridging the Class Divide
- Why Rosa Parks Really Sat Down on the Bus
- Put Some Heart into It: Organizing with Intention and Building Community
- How to Shift Culture in your Organization
- Dealing with Attacks from the Right
“Linda is a woman with lots of experience, heart and mind and activist passion, while valuing spirit.” Karimah Stauch, Bonn, Germany, Regional Coordinator, United Religions Initiative
“I like very much the way as Linda explains: her rhythm, her way of listening all of us, the match between the words and her own life experience.” Enoé Texier, Venezuela, Regional Coordinator, United Religions Initiative
“It’s not very often that you walk out of a training or workshop feeling that both your intellect and emotions were stimulated by the experience you had with your facilitator and other participants. Linda’s workshop provided just that–and in an online setting!: a deeper understanding of how to run a GOTV campaign, as well as the impassioned urgency to act.” Julieta Vitullo, Author and Playwright, Seattle WA
“It was participatory and warm with a lot of encouragement from the trainer.” Despina Namwembe, Regional Coordinator, United Religions Initiative, Uganda
“I like and love everything, especially the Goals setting, the opportunity to learn and to share. The training was participatory and engaging.” Emmanuel Ande Ivorgba, Regional Coordinator, United Religions Initiative, North Central Nigeria
“Linda Stout’s workshop “Building Power To Win” offers such critical tools for this political moment. As a young organizer, so many of the early campaigns I was a part of struggled to build a long-lasting and powerful base of support – and nurture a strong community amongst those folks. Linda tells inspiring stories about her own experiences in effective base-building that make it clear that building our power to win is possible.” Jess Grady-Benson, PeoplesHub
Linda Stout is an activist and a visionary. She is also an experienced and in-demand speaker at colleges, conferences and activist gatherings, and can bring her heartfelt message of hope and vision to your group or panel discussion.
In her lifetime, she has identified and worked against injustice within her world, her country and her community. Like so many women – a handful recognized, most invisible – she has refused to be silenced or stopped from building inclusive, direct democracy. As a thirteenth-generation Quaker born to a tenant-farming family in the Piedmont region of North Carolina, Linda first recognized racial and economic injustice in the mid-1970s. Refusing to support the racism and classism endemic in the textile mill she worked in, Linda left a desperately needed paycheck and began a lifelong mission for social change.
In 1985, after several years working for a civil rights law office, she founded a successful grassroots organization called the Piedmont Peace Project (PPP). PPP quickly attracted national attention for its success in drawing leadership from within a poor and working-class community–empowering people who never had a voice in policy decisions to speak up for their own interests–and building an organization where a high level of diversity was achieved and maintained at every level. PPP established itself in the midst of a daunting mix of well-organized corporate interests including textile giant Cannon Mills and icons of the political right wing such as the Moral Majority, Senator Jesse Helms, and the Ku Klux Klan. In order to work at the national level, Linda Stout accepted the Executive Director position at the Peace Development Fund (PDF) in 1995. Under Linda’s leadership, PDF tripled its grant making capacity and initiated several groundbreaking projects, including the Community Media Organizing Project, the Southeast Training for Trainers Program, and the National Listening Project.
Linda founded Spirit in Action in January 2000 to seek out transformative tools, models, and resources for building a powerful and visionary progressive movement. Spirit in Action’s core initiatives, Circles of Change and the Progressive Communicators Network, produce real change in communities across the country. Most notably, both programs have contributed to the rebuilding of New Orleans through Kids Rethink New Orleans Schools – a student-led initiative to rebuild New Orleans’ public schools, and KIN – the Katrina Information Network that has mobilized and educated reporters about the systemic issues of race and class at play in New Orleans and the Gulf region.
Linda is the author of countless articles and a critically acclaimed book, Bridging the Class Divide, published by Beacon Press in 1997. Her awards and honors include a Public Policy Fellowship from Harvard’s Radcliff College, the Freedom Fighter Award of the Equal Rights Congress, the Petra Foundation Fellowship, and Studs Terkel’s profile of her life in his book, Hope Dies Last. She has been active in several volunteer organizations including Class Action, United for a Fair Economy, and the Radcliffe Public Policy Institute Economic Justice Task Force. Always a crusader for justice speaking from the heart, Linda has given over 500 lectures, sermons, and workshops in the last 30 years in an effort to use her voice to unite change-makers to create a just world. Her newest book, Collective Visioning shows how to create an inspiring vision, including a process for building trust so that people from every background work together with passion, commitment and joy.