My time with the LIPC has been challenging, rewarding, overwhelming, and life affirming. Through the organization and its affiliation with Citizen Action of New York, I have met some of the most kind, inspiring, and thoughtful human beings I know. In a short period of time, I have come to be a more open, vulnerable, and compassionate person. In the world of organizing for social change, this type of growth is necessary for the job.
Progressive change occurs at a frustratingly glacial pace. Compassion, openness, and patience are required tools for organizers in the fight against the structural injustices that shape our world. In the face of seemingly insurmountable odds, organizers do the most important thing you can to combat these forces: try. The appreciation and respect I have for my colleagues serves as a constant source of motivation in my work.
Since graduating from SUNY Binghamton in 2013, I have tried to secure an organizing position. My new role as the LIPC’s Sustainability Organizer is the first opportunity i’ve been afforded to do this work full-time and I am grateful to be here. It takes a very particular type of person to do this work. Although I have not been organizing long enough to know if I really am that type of person, I am excited to find out. I have much more to learn; much more to grow; and much more to work towards.
As the Sustainability Organizer, I will build upon the success of PowerUp Communities, which has already brought energy efficiency to hundreds of neighborhoods throughout the Island; I will advocate for renewable energy projects including offshore wind and community solar; and I will work towards sustainability by creating dialogue, policy, and programs necessary to realize further systemic change.