2018 Annual Membership Meeting

We’re in a moment of tremendous danger, but also surrounded by profound political opportunity. In the face of these times, KFTC is part of building a movement that is oriented to a shared vision of a beloved community – the Kentucky that many of us believe is possible.

The Beloved Community was a concept popularized by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and is based on his belief that a mass group of people who are truly committed to non-violence can create a world where discrimination, poverty, militarism, hate, fear and all forms of violence are eradicated and love, trust, reconciliation, peace and justice thrive. For KFTC, and our Commonwealth, that Beloved Community is alive in our vision statement.

We are claiming that Kentucky, and building toward it now with work to change the political landscape, and to build power through our relationships and interconnectedness. This movement – this transition – will take all of us. Join us in a weekend of claiming Kentucky and creating our beloved community.

Join KFTC members from across Kentucky at our annual gathering August 3-5 in Berea. We’ll meet on the campus of Berea College for a weekend of great guest speakers, workshops, social activities and more. The weekend gathering is family-friendly. Childcare will be offered, and youth are encouraged to participate in all sessions.

Our Keynote Speaker

Anthony Thigpenn, a Los Angeles-based community organizer for more than 30 years, heads California Calls, a powerful alliance of 31 organizations in 12 counties around the state. The centerpiece of California Calls is to achieve progressive, long-term tax and fiscal policy reform by engaging underrepresented, low-income voters in state public policy decision-making.

Mr. Thigpenn is widely recognized as a leading expert in grassroots, civic engagement technology and programs. He ran successful field campaigns for Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, Congresswoman Karen Bass, State Senator Kevin de León, and former City Councilmember Martin Ludlow, among others.

Mr. Thigpenn is also the founder and president of Strategic Concepts in Organizing & Policy Education (SCOPE), a grassroots organization formed in South Los Angeles shortly after the 1992 uprising in the city. It was formerly known as AGENDA.

The weekend begins Friday evening as folks arrive, settle in and get to know each other through a fun, interactive and informal program. Then we begin Saturday morning with an opening session where we orient ourselves to the space and theme of the weekend and begin to dig into a great day of learning and sharing.

Participants will have the opportunity to attend two break-out sessions of their choice from a great lineup of eight different workshops. An afternoon break on Saturday will give folks a chance to stretch our legs or relax our minds a bit. Optional recreational and educational activities will be offered during the break. Then we’ll come back together on Saturday evening for a fun awards ceremony that recognizes the hard and important work of KFTC leaders throughout the year, and also hear from a powerful, engaging keynote speaker Anthony Thigpenn of California Calls.

Sunday morning we’ll have a brand-new set of break-out sessions to choose from and then join together for our democratic, grassroots business meeting before saying goodbye. A full schedule is listed below. More details will be added as the program continues to take shape.

Lodging will be provided in three dorm buildings within a very short walk of the meeting space. When you register you’ll have the opportunity to tell us which dorm rooms best suit you and your family’s needs. All dorms are fully air-conditioned, and accessible rooms are available. If for some reason the dorms will not work for your lodging needs, you can indicate that when you register and we will work with you to find appropriate accommodations.

If you have questions about the gathering that you would like answered before deciding to register, please let us know by contacting KFTC staffperson Carissa Lenfert at 502-208-1696 or carissa@kftc.org.

Don’t delay. Register now. We expect to fill up quickly, so reserve your spot today. Register by June 29 to lock in the early-bird pricing. Scholarships are also available by request.

Schedule of Events

Friday, August 3

4 p.m.           Registration Opens

6 - 7 p.m.     Story Circle

7 - 8 p.m.    Story Circle

7 - 10 p.m.  Berea Music Festival

9 p.m.          Film: Gender Journeys: More Than a Pronoun

9 p.m.          Social Time: KFTC Game Night


Saturday, August 4

7:15 a.m.    Gentle Yoga

7:30 a.m.   Breakfast, Registration Opens

9 a.m.          Opening Session: Claiming Our Commonwealth: Creating Kentucky’s Beloved Community

10:15            Group photo 

10:30 a.m. Break

10:45 a.m. Workshop Round 1

    • Digital Organizing: Building Grassroots Power Online & In Real Life – Join us to learn how to use social media platforms to build community on and offline, bring people into the movement, and take action for justice.

    • From Monuments to Monumental Movements: Supporting People Of Color Led Organizing – We are working for a day when discrimination is wiped out of our laws, habits, and hearts. In this workshop we will hear from folks working for racial justice in Kentucky, learn tools for anti-racist organizing, and explore how best to show up for people of color led movements.  

    • Shaping a Just Transition in Kentucky– Join this workshop to learn how KFTC members and allies are working to advance a Just Transition. We’ll explore what those words mean for us in Kentucky and in other contexts around the country and the world. We’ll spotlight specific campaigns and projects KFTC members are organizing to shape inclusive and participatory decision-making and win policies and investments to address racial, gender and economic inequalities. And we’ll discuss ways all of us can take action and help lead a Just Transition to a more just and sustainable economy – one that works for all of us.

    • Creating spaces of belonging: anti-oppression within our organizing – KFTC aims to model and live out the values and vision that are necessary to build the world we want to live in. This workshop will support participants in building a shared understanding of systems of oppression, how they impact us and our organizing, and how we can create spaces that move us toward collective liberation. We’ll learn concrete ways to make our spaces inclusive for all, and together, we’ll develop more ways forward. We’ll leave better equipped to create beloved communities and spaces of belonging.

    • Action for Democracy: Working Toward People Powered Politics in Kentucky – Join this workshop to learn more about Action for Democracy, KFTC's year-round approach to building grassroots power to win on election day, increase civic engagement, build a healthy democracy, and pass progressive local, state and federal legislation. You'll walk away with new skills to register, educate, empower, and turnout progressive voters in your community in 2018 and beyond.

    • Building Beloved Community through Connection and Resilience – Good organizing demands strategy, tactics, and vision. But good organizing IS, fundamentally, relationships. Through personal relationships, we create the connective tissue of the world we want to see. In this workshop, we’ll consider how to cultivate movements that are inch-wide and mile deep. How can listening, story circles, and togetherness help us grow roots for the long haul.

    • Following Youth Leadership – This highly interactive workshop is by and for youth. It is open only to folks 14-30 years old. Participants will build our skills to bring other young people into our movements, share our stories, and connect to young people across the state. We’ll spend time envisioning, strategizing, and planning for a Kentucky where our voices are heard and valued.

    • Beyond Pronouns – To be better allies to members of our community who are transgender, genderqueer or non-binary, this workshop will focus on deepening our understanding of our work around gender inclusion and gender justice. We will be discussing a wide array of challenges that transgendered folks face every day, including but not limited to: racism, invalidation, violence, lack of access to health and much more. Together, we have a lot of room to improve how we treat people who fit outside conventional ideas around gender. This workshop’s goal is to create intentional dialogue to discuss and address the issues mentioned above.

12:15 p.m.      Lunch

1:30 p.m.       Workshop Round 2

    • (Same set of workshops as listed above, except for Youth Leadership)

    • ADDITIONAL AFTERNOON WORKSHOP: Building a Plan to Build Governing Power: Over the past decade, grassroots organizations across the country have begun developing strategies to move beyond political resistance or winning issue campaigns, to building governing power.  In this workshop, with guest Anthony Thigpenn, we will examine the statewide power building approach of California Calls and their allies and imagine the commitments and strategies needed to build vision-based “governing power” in Kentucky.

3 p.m.            Afternoon Break
                          Optional Berea College Historical Walking Tour        

5:30 p.m.     Dinner

6:45 p.m.     Keynote Address: Building Governing Power, Anthony Thigpenn

8:15 p.m.     KFTC Annual Awards Ceremony and Celebration

The annual KFTC Awards Ceremony is an opportunity to recognize members who have made exceptional contributions to our work during the past year. Over the years, many KFTC members have been arrested, lost jobs and overcome great personal adversity in the pursuit of change. These annual awards recognize courage, sacrifice, hard work, passion and commitment.

9 p.m.          Social Activity 

Sunday, August 5

7:15 a.m.      Zen meditation

8 a.m.           Breakfast

9 a.m.           Workshops

    • Art in Organizing - Vision Building and the Role of Creative Expression: The world we are building towards, the one described in our vision statement, is a world we’ve never seen before. As Adrienne Marie Brown describes, “Art is not neutral. It either upholds or disrupts the status quo, advancing or regressing justice.”  Art can cause a disruption, help us see the world that we’re striving to create, and can serve as an outlet to help us process the world that we’re living in. Art also allows us to ground our social justice work in our cultural identity to create change in a way that acknowledges our full and authentic selves.  Join us as we view some examples of art in organizing and create art together.

    • Campaign for Our Commonwealth - Investing in Our Future: Join us for a brief overview of economic justice in Kentucky’s tax and budget policy. Hear from experts about what lessons we are learning from Kansas’ tax and budget problems and how we can do better. Leave knowing how we can take action between now and the November elections.

    • Building a moral movement: the Kentucky Poor People’s Campaign. Fifty years ago, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was killed while working to build a Poor People’s Campaign to address the interlocking issues of poverty, systemic racism and militarism. Today, a new effort is underway to re-ignite a moral movement capable of lifting up the voices and concerns of 140 million people living at or near poverty in the U.S. In recent months, many KFTC members have participated in the Kentucky Poor People’s Campaign, including taking part in speak-outs and nonviolent direct actions, hosting community conversations, challenging the governor’s closed capitol policy, speaking with members of Congress and attending a large rally and march in Washington, DC. Join us in this workshop to learn more about this inspiring movement. We’ll share stories from recent events, discuss what we’ve learned and accomplished so far, and shape ideas about where we go from here.

    • Pulling Off a Successful Nonviolent Direct Action - More than just an introduction: Nonviolent Direct Action is an effect, yet complex campaign tactic. Come to this workshop to get a good understanding of what NVDA is, how to make it happen, the various roles that need to be filled, how to keep it legal and other legality considerations, and finally, how to take care of yourself and your people mentally and physically throughout.

    • Writing for Social Change: A Workshop on Movement Building - Do you have something to say? And do you want to get it out into the world, but feel intimidated or unsure of where to start? You don't have to be a published author, an award winning journalist, or a famous artist or songwriter to put what's in your head and heart onto paper and into the world. Join us for this workshop to practice writing and learn best ways to create and share what you have to say to build our Beloved Community in a fun, welcoming, judgement-free, creative space.

10:30 a.m.  Annual Business Meeting

This is the time when we review and vote on KFTC’s issue platform, elect statewide officers, and approve new and returning KFTC chapters.

12 p.m. Adjourn

August 3, 2018 (All day) to August 5, 2018 (All day)
Event Organizer: 
Carissa Lenfert
Contact Email: 
Event Venue: 
Berea College
Event Location: 
101 Chestnut St
Berea, KY 40404