Please welcome our fabulous panelists and speakers! They are a phenomenal collective of change leaders, strategists, activists, creators, and deep thinkers. We know that you will be moved by their inspirational ideas and radical aspirations.
Meet the most important and powerful social justice warrior you’ve never heard of…unless you live in Washington State…Vicki Lowe.
She has also worked in the Health Department of the Jamestown S’Klallam Tribe since December of 1996. Ms. Lowe has seen this program through many changes in the private insurance world as well as Medicare and Medicaid. She participated on the Basic Health Sponsorship Workgroup, negotiated a Tribal Member only plan with a commercial carrier, initiated contracting with commercial carriers at the Jamestown Family Health Clinic, participated in the creation and implementation of the Jamestown S’Klallam Tribe Employee Plan, a self-funded plan, worked with Jamestown S’Klallam Tribe’s newly created Human Resources Department to review and update benefits for the employee’s plans – benefits including Life, AD&D and LTD, Long Term Care Coverage, Self-Funded Worker’s Compensation and Wellness benefits. She also worked on implementation of the Indian provisions of the Affordable Care Act into the Employee Benefits and PRC programs.
(She/her) is a White, neurodivergent, queer woman of 20th-century, working-class immigrant descent. She got her start in social justice and equity in her high school years. She later expanded into electoral politics with the Bernie 2016 campaign. Now a civil service worker and union member, she aims to bridge the generational gap in healthcare reform dialogues. Her primary interests in working with OPS are in consolidating power across voting blocs and promoting policies that integrate multiple dimensions of wellness in public health administration.
Rodney S. Sadler, Jr.
(He, him) is a graduate of Howard University (1989, B.S. Psychology/Philosophy), Howard University School of Divinity (1992, M.Div.), and Duke University (2001, Ph.D. Hebrew Bible and Biblical Archaeology), and has also studied at Hebrew University (1990). He is an ordained Baptist minister and presently serves as Associate Pastor of Mount Carmel Baptist Church and Associate Professor of Bible at Union Presbyterian Seminary. MORE.
Paul Blundell is an Amazon warehouse worker in southern New Jersey who, along with his co-workers, has been organizing with Amazonians United for over two years. Amazonians United South Jersey has won policy changes and safety improvements through collective direct action like petitions and marches on the boss. Amazonians United is a national network of Amazon workers who organize on the shop floor to build worker power at work and to win concessions from the boss through direct action. Paul is also active in Philly DSA.
Claude Burfect (He, him) is First Vice President of the Seattle/King County NAACP and has been an NAACP member since 1957. He has degrees in Political Science as well as Communication among others from the University of Washington. Claude has worked for the Seattle Times, Madrona Middle School, and Boeing Aerospace, all while supporting and participating in organizations fighting for equality, fair labor practices and voter education/turnout.
(She, her) BA English & Spanish, MS Spanish, MED Public School Administration- serves as President of the Health Care for All Colorado Advocacy Board (HCAC). Lydia was born and raised in Texas and lives in Denver. She has a son who lives in Texas. She is a retired educator, most recently serving in the Denver Metro area school districts as a teacher, High School Principal, Assistant Principal and a school district Chief Program Officer. She has also served on the Board of Directors for Health Care for All Colorado (HCAC) for the past 13 years. She served as Chair of the Denver Chapter of HCAC. She has been a diligent activist for health care reform in Colorado. MORE
Assistant Director of Shelter Services at the Centre County Women’s Resource Center, an organization that provides services to survivors of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual violence, and stalking. Michele lives in Centre County, PA, and supports many local progressive and human service programs. She currently serves as the Vice President of the PA National Organization for Women. MORE.
(He, him) After retiring from teaching high school chemistry in 1999, He turned his attention to political action hoping to preserve the environment. This led to involvement in Healthcare for All PA, helping publicize and lobby for universal healthcare. Now 85, he is a member of the old generation, dealing with health issues, and hoping to be of some use.”
My name is Ilyas Khan (they/them), I’m an 18 year old Muslim Latine Youth Climate Activist. I’m originally from Buffalo, New York. I organized climate strikes there from the end of 2018 til the end of 2020 and thereafter moved to Pittsburgh Pennsylvania. I’ve organized with the youth climate organization Sunrise Pittsburgh ever since. This coming year I’ll be a freshman at Carnegie Mellon.
Ajay Marwaha M.D.
(He, him) is a physician who believes that high-quality and affordable healthcare is a human right. He advocates for expanding affordable, equitable, portable, and high-quality health insurance coverage to everyone in America in their spare time. Ajay believes that, as the wealthiest nation in the world, America has the ability to achieve this. MORE.
(He, him) coordinates between the policy and phone bank branches of the Center for Common Ground, assists with day-to-day operations, and facilitates daily communications with CCG volunteers.
(She, her) is a senior advisor to OPS and a veteran social justice strategist and organizer. In 2019 she had a major role in making Action Network the core element of OPS organizing and communication. She is a founding board member and digital strategist for the Center for Common Ground. MORE.
Peter Olney is the retired Director of Organizing for the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU). Olney has been part of the labor movement for over 50 years. He has worked for numerous labor unions as an organizer and negotiator. Since coming to California in 1983 he has focused his work on building organization in the immigrant working class.
From 2001 until 2004 Olney was the Associate Director of the University of California’s Institute for Labor and Employment (ILE). Olney has a Masters in Business Administration from UCLA. He resides in San Francisco, California.
Daye Pope (she/her) is a gender justice advocate who has been organizing LGBTQ communities for over a decade to change narratives, oppose discriminatory laws, and fight for equality. As Director of Civic Engagement with TAKE, a trans-led organization, Daye works to get trans and nonbinary communities more deeply engaged in the political process..
Nox Shou / 蘓章良
(They/them/theirs) is a Philadelphia-based farmer, philosopher, aesthetician, artist, activist, filmmaker, and self-styled polymath and psychopomp of Teochew-Chinese descent. They run Crow’s Rest Farm, an urban micro-farm in South Philly. Nox practices regenerative, organic, urban micro-farming with the use of permaculture methods. Their goal is to teach people to grow their own food and shake off the toxic dependence on supermarkets and industrially produced food.
(She, her) is an organizer for social justice issues and candidates in Pennsylvania. She managed a grassroots state senate campaign against a seventeen-year incumbent, raising over $25,000 during the campaign, in the midst of a pandemic. She cultivates working relationships with area businesses, local media and community organizations. She has spearheaded methods of text, phone banking and social media voter outreach. Organized socially distanced campaign events such as a drive-in movie fundraiser, virtual parades and Facebook town halls.
(He, him) is a political activist, author, political blogger, radio show host, business owner, software developer, web designer, and mechanical engineer in Kingwood, TX. Egberto is an ardent Progressive that believes tolerance is essential. His favorite phrase is “political involvement should be a requirement for citizenship”. He believes that we must get away from the current policies that reward those who simply move money/capital and produce nothing tangible for our society. If a change in policy does not occur, America will be no different than many oligarchic societies where a few are able to accumulate wealth while the rest are left out because it is mathematically impossible to catch up. [LinkedIn profile]
Chuck Pennacchio, Ph.D., is a five-decade issue, electoral, and union organizer; president of the One Payer States network (onepayerstates.org); senior advisor to Healthcare for All Pennsylvania; co-founder of Our Revolution PA; founder of the Justice for All Network (justiceforall.global); producer of the single-payer documentary “Fix It: Healthcare at the Tipping Point” (fixithealthcare.org); 2016 Bernie Sanders delegate; 2006 Democratic primary candidate for the United States Senate (PA); aide to four U.S. Senators and one U.S. House Member, 1979-1988; a 32-year history and politics professor at University of the Arts in Philadelphia, Delaware Valley University (PA), Texas A&M-Corpus Christi, and University of Colorado-Boulder; and author/co-author of several books, book chapters, and articles on U.S. and European history, U.S. healthcare, and U.S. politics. More importantly, Chuck is the father of two children, Sophia (26) and Ben (23), who are also politically and intellectually engaged citizens. He now lives in Sharpsburg, Pennsylvania.