Revolution At The Crossroads Schedule


Revolution at the Crossroads Working Conference Schedule

MayDay Community Space
176 St. Nicholas Avenue Brooklyn, NY 11237
Presidents' Day Weekend 2017

Nearest subways: Dekalb Ave (L), Myrtle-Wyckoff Ave (M,L) 


Friday, February 17, 2017

Location: Mayday Space 176 St Nicholas Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11237

6:30 PM: What Is a Young Democratic Socialist to Do? Lessons and Strategies to Fight the Trump Administration

  • Winnie Wong, People for Bernie
  • Michael Lighty, National Nurses United
  • khalid kamau, Candidate for South Fulton, GA City Council
  • Elizabeth Henderson, DSA (moderator)

Saturday, February 18, 2017

9 AM: Registration and Breakfast

10 AM: Plenary #1: What is Democratic Socialism?

  • Joseph Schwartz, DSA National Political Committee and Vice-Chair
  • Dan LaBotz, Co-Editor, New Politics
  • Rahel Biru, Chair, New York City DSA
  • Meghan Brophy, YDS National Coordinating Committee (moderator)

12:15 PM: Workshop Block #1

1)      Intersectionality Explained 

  • Natalie Midiri, Philly DSA
  • Jack Suria Linares, YDS Coordinating Committee
  • Hannah Zimmerman, YDS National Coordinating Committee (moderator)

2)      Unions in Crisis: How Young Workers Can Revive the Labor Movement 

  • Bianca Cunningham, Communications Workers of America and NYC DSA Labor Branch
  • Paul Prescod, Working Educators, the reform caucus in the Philadelphia Federation of Teachers
  • Chris Maisano, NYC DSA, contributing editor of Jacobin, and New York State Nurses Association
  • Ryan Mosgrove, YDS Assistant Youth Organizer and labor movement & Occupy activist (moderator)

3)     Campus Organizing 101: How to Build Power and Win!

  • Hannah Allison, DSA Traveling Organizer

4)     Skills Training to Fight the Right on Your Campus

  • Adam Cardo, Metro Atlanta DSA
  • Javier Miranda, DSA Anti-Racism Working Group
  • Andrew Shelton, YDS National Coordinating Committee (moderator) 

1:45 PM: Lunch

2:45 PM: Plenary #2: Looking Backward, Moving Forward: People of Color in Socialist Movements

  • Jose LaLuz, Trade Unionist and DSA Vice-Chair
  • Komozi Woodard, Sarah Lawrence College professor 
  • Jesse Soria, El Chuco (El Paso, TX) DSA (moderator)

4:30 PM: Workshop Block #2

1)      Turning Activists Into Organizers

  • Dustin Guastella, Philly DSA
  • Elizabeth Henderson, Boston DSA and DSA National Political Committee
  • Spencer Brown, Co-Chair of the National Coordinating Committee of the YDS (moderator)

2)      Racialized Capitalism

  • Kazembe Balagun, Rosa Luxumburg Stiftung
  • Maria Svart, National Director, DSA
  • Jack Suria Linares, YDS National Coordinating Committee (moderator)

3)      A Socialist Approach to Privilege Politics & Cultural Appropriation

  • RL Stephens II, founding editor of Orchestrated Pulse, co-host of Jacobin podcast 'Stockton to Malone,' and union staffer
  • Liza Featherstone, Editor of False Choices: The Faux Feminism of Hillary Clinton and columnist at amNY
  • Shuja Haider, Contributing Editor of Viewpoint
  • Amber Frost, Chapo Trap House and DSA (moderator)

4)      A Credible Model for the Socialist Left and How Neoliberal Globalization Undermines It: Sweden and Latin America

  • Joanne Barkan, Writer and Dissent editorial board member
  • Jared Abbott, Chair, Steering Committee of the DSA
  • Andrew Shelton, YDS National Coordinating Committee (moderator)

6 PM: Saturday Closing Event: Building a YDS chapter – Moderator: Ryan Mosgrove

8 PM to Midnight: Party in Brooklyn

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Note Location Change: Starr Bar 214 Starr St, Brooklyn, NY 11237 

9:30 AM: Registration

10:30 AM: Plenary #3: Socialist Feminism

  • Michele Rossi, DSA and National Feminist Working Group
  • Nichole Shippen, Professor at CUNY and author of Decolonizing Time: Work, Leisure, and Freedom
  • Hannah Zimmerman, YDS National Coordinating Committee (moderator)

12 PM: Brunch

1:30 PM: Workshop Block #3 

1)      Building Sanctuary Spaces on Campus and Beyond

  • Shirley Leyro, CUNY
  • Matt Ospina, California-based student and immigrant rights activist 
  • Morgan Donhoff, New Sanctuary Coalition of NYC and NYU Silver School of Social Work
  • Jack Suria Linares, YDS National Coordinating Committee (moderator)

2)      Hit the Books! The Importance of Socialist Political Education

  • Bhaskar Sunkara, Jacobin and DSA Vice-Chair
  • Neal Meyer, Jacobin
  • Meghan Brophy, YDS National Coordinating Committee

3)      Socialism and Queer Liberation 

  • Kate Redburn, contributing editor Jacobin magazine
  • Jon Nalley, long-time socialist and LGBTQ activist
  • Aubrey Simonson, YDS
  • Ben Serby (moderator), DSA

3 PM: Goodbyes



Bhaskar Sunkara
Bhaskar Sunkara is the founding editor and publisher of Jacobin, a Vice-Chair of Democratic Socialists of America, and the editor of The ABCs of Socialism.


khalid kamau
From Black Lives Matter organizer to 2016 Bernie Sanders delegate, kamau is leading a generation of activists from protests to politics. After leading the walkout of nearly 1,900 Sanders delegates at the Democratic National Convention, kamau returned to Atlanta, emboldened by Bernie's advice to run for local office. He is now running for City Council in Georgia's newest city, and organizing other progressives to run as well. khalid is a member of Atlanta chapters of Black Lives Matter, Fight for 15, and the Atlanta Housing Justice League. He is a member of the Democratic Socialists of America.


Michael Lighty 
Lighty is currently the Director of Public Policy for National Nurses United. Since becoming active during college in the DSA youth section, he has organized throughout the country for economic justice, and in particular guaranteed healthcare for all. Lighty was the first openly LGBTQ person to lead a socialist organization as DSA National Director in the early 90’s. He has worked for California Nurses Association/NNU since 1994, where he has coordinated campaigns for an HMO patients’ bill of rights, clean money elections, and against Arnold Schwarzenegger and Meg Whitman. He has also campaigned nationally for a Robin Hood Tax. In 2016, he led NNU’s BernieBus campaign, an independent effort to elect Bernie Sanders for President. He is currently working to win Improved Medicare for All nationally and in California. He serves on the Board of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Freedom Center in Oakland, CA, where he lives.


Photo credit: Brennan Cavanaugh
Liza Featherstone
Featherstone writes about feminism, education, economic justice, socialism and many other subjects. She is the first-ever advice columnist for The Nation magazine and also writes an opinion column for amNY. Featherstone is editor of False Choices: The Faux Feminism of Hillary Rodham Clinton, published by Verso last year. She’s also the author of Selling Women Short: The Landmark Battle for Workers’ Rights at Wal-Mart (Basic Books), and the co-author of Students Against Sweatshops (Verso).


Jose La Luz
La Luz is a Veteran Trade unionist and tireless social justice organizer. La Luz has been a leading voice for worker and immigrant rights for more than five decades. La Luz was the architect of the strategy that unionized 120,000 Puerto Rican public sector workers. He is also a Vice-Chair of the Democratic Socialists of America.


Amber A’lee Frost
A Brooklyn-based writer and journalist. Frost teaches writing at New York University, is a Baffler columnist, and co-host of Chapo Trap House. She also served as a Young Democratic Socialists chapter leader and national elected leader, and serving a term on the National Political Committee of the Democratic Socialists of America.


Maria Svart
Svart is Democratic Socialists of America's National Director. Prior to that she was a union organizer with the Service Employees International Union for eight years, as well as a campus organizer with the Massachusetts Public Interest Research Group. She joined DSA through the Young Democratic Socialists as a student feminist activist searching for a more intersectional feminism, and went on to be a YDS national co-chair and then member of the DSA National Political Committee.


Komozi Woodard
Woodard's special interests in African American history, politics, and culture, emphasizing the Black Freedom Movement, women in the Black Revolt, US urban and ethnic history, public policy and persistent poverty, oral history, and the experience of anti-colonial movements. Author of A Nation Within a Nation: Amiri Baraka and Black Power Politics and reviews, chapters, and essays in journals, anthologies, and encyclopedia. Editor, The Black Power Movement, Part I: Amiri Baraka, From Black Arts to Black RadicalismFreedom NorthGroundworkWant to Start a Revolution?; and Women in the Black Freedom Struggle. Reviewer for American Council of Learned Societies; adviser to the Algebra Project and the PBS documentaries, Eyes on the Prize II and America’s War on Poverty; board of directors, Urban History Association.


Kazembe Balagun
Balagun is a writer, activist and father living in The Bronx, New York. He is former member of the Student Liberation Action Movement (SLAM!) a collective of students defending public education at the City University of New York. He currently works as a project manager at Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung New York Office, where he works on issues of racial justice, Black liberation and the right to the city.


Winnie Wong
Wong is an organizer and co-founder of the People for Bernie.


Bianca Cunningham
Cunningham organized her coworkers at Verizon Wireless to form a union and join Communications Workers of America (CWA). She now is an organizer with CWA. Cunningham serves as the chair of the DSA Labor Branch and the point person on DSA’s Racial Justice city-wide working group.


Rahel Biru
Biru is the co-chair for the NYC Democratic Socialists of America. She has lived in the city for nearly seven years and been an active DSA member for about three. She found DSA after her state's 2014 gubernatorial primary ended like the last Democratic presidential primary, with a corrupt corporatist beating a reformer. She realized something else had to be done; and it wasn’t enough to vote and canvass for the nearest DNC-er. She joined DSA shortly after that.


Jared Abbott
Abbott is the chair of the steering committee of DSA's National Political Committee and a PhD student in political science at Harvard University where he studies the relationship between left political parties and social movements. He is active in the Harvard Graduate Student Union (UAW).


Joseph Schwartz
Schwartz serves as a Vice-Chair of Democratic Socialists of America and is an elected member of its National Political Committee. He teaches political theory and American politics at Temple University and is the author of The Permanence of the Political and The Future of Democratic Equality.  Active on the left since being a high school anti-Vietnam war activist, Schwartz served as the first campus organizer for DSA (1979-1981). Since then he has been active in Boston, Ithaca, and Philadelphia DSA, Schwartz writes frequently for Dissent, In These Times, Jacobin, and other left publications. 


Shirley Leyro
Leyro is an Assistant Professor of Criminal Justice at Borough of Manhattan Community College – CUNY.  She is a native New Yorker currently living in Harlem U.S.A. with her pets. A critical criminologist, Dr. Leyro’s research focuses on deportation effects – including the impact of the fear resulting from the vulnerability to deportation. Her research interests include immigration, social disorganization, and crimmigration. She is co-editor of Outside Justice: Immigration and the Criminalizing Impact of Changing Policy and Practice as well as a contributor to the same volume. She is also a member of the Leadership Team for the Latina Researchers Network


Joanne Barkan
Barkan is a writer based in New York City and Cape Cod and author of Visions of Emancipation: The Italian Workers Movement Since 1945. She has written on Sweden, the European Union, social democracy, and globalization as well as Italy. Her latest work is on the role of “big philanthropy” in the United States and the privatization of public education. She is on the editorial board of Dissent magazine


Dan La Botz
La Botz was involved in the anti-war movement and farmworker movement in the 1960s, was a truck driver and Teamster union activist in the 1970s, a community organizer in the 1980s, and has spent the last thirty years as a college teacher and writer on social movements, labor unions, and politics in Mexico and the United States. He is an editor of New Politics ( and a teacher at the Murphy Institute, the CUNY labor school. He is a Democratic Socialists of America member active in the Brooklyn branch.


Nichole Marie Shippen
Shippen is Associate Professor in the Department of Social Science at LaGuardia Community College, CUNY. She is the author of Decolonizing Time: Work, Leisure, and Freedom (2014). Her current research is on the politics of premature death.  


Neal Meyer
Meyer lives in Brooklyn and is on the Steering Committee of NYC Democratic Socialists of America. He also works as the reading group organizer for Jacobin magazine.


Michele Rossi
Rossi has been a member of DSA since 1993. In addition to having served on DSA's national staff and National Political Committee, she has been active in the New York City, East Bay, and Philadelphia locals. Currently she resides in Philadelphia, where she spends a lot of time thinking and writing about inequality, culture, and politics, and raising a rambunctious toddler.


Kate Redburn
Redburn is a JD-PhD student at Yale Law School and the Yale Department of History. Their work in 20th century U.S. queer and trans* legal history addresses questions of identity formation and legal consciousness in administrative and local government law. Prior to starting graduate school, they worked as a community organizer in New York, and as a photographer and oral historian in Argentina. You can find their writing in lefty magazines, including Jacobin Magazine, where they are a contributing editor.


Shuja Haider
Haider is a writer and musician based in Brooklyn. He is a contributing editor at Viewpoint Magazine, and has also written for Jacobin and The Believer.


Jon Nalley
Nalley is a photographer and writer living in NYC who cut his teeth politically as a 13 year old working on the McGovern campaign. A member of the Democratic Socialist Organizing Committee's student chapter at Michigan State, Jon also served as MSU's (then) Lesbian/Gay Council rep on student government and as an elected leftist (& openly gay) member of student government. Upon moving to NYC in 1983, Jon worked for many years in the Democratic Party's progressive / insurgent sectors – particularly in the grassroots, neighborhood clubhouse level. Involved in both ACT UP/NY and Central America work (CISPES) during the Reagan and Bush Sr. years, Jon was elected as a leftist, openly gay, and openly HIV+ member of a Manhattan School Board in May 1993 with nearly 9,000 votes – the highest garnered by a school board candidate in the city's history (under decentralization). He was handily reelected to a second term in 1996. 


Natalie Midiri
Midiri works in housing and transportation at the Philadelphia Unemployment Project. She is also co-chair of Philly Democratic Socialists of America.


Adam Cardo
Cardo is the former President of Emory University Young Democratic Socialists, and on the executive board of Metro Atlanta Democratic Socialists of America. He currently works as a package handler at UPS, where he is a member of Teamsters local 728.


Spencer Brown
Brown is on the Young Democratic Socialists National Coordinating Committee and serves as co-chair. Currently a student at Wesleyan University, he is originally from Boston, where he helped to rebuild the ever-growing local.
Aubrey Simonson
Simonson is a member of the Young Democratic Socialists and the Wellesley College Student Labor Action Project, and has spent much of the last year trying to launch QUILTBAG, a podcast about Queer History. They spend a great deal of their time trying to convince college students who have a tenuous and only newly socially acceptable collection of identities to also call themselves socialists, among other forms of herding cats.  


Chris Maisano
Maisano is a member of the NYC Democratic Socialists of America steering committee. He is also a union staffer and a contributing editor at Jacobin magazine


Jack Suria Linares
Suria Linares was born and raised in Los Angeles, California and is currently completing his Master's in Labor Studies at the CUNY-Murphy Institute. He has served on the Young Democratic Socialists National Coordinating Committee since 2015. 


Morgan Donhoff
Donhoff is an MSW Candidate at NYU’s Silver School of Social Work and works for the New Sanctuary Coalition of NYC. Her work focuses on migrant rights and dismantling the deportation machine; radical, intersectional feminism; and mass incarceration and the prison industrial complex.


Matt Ospina
Ospina is an immigration activist and community college student in Southern California. He has worked with Catholic Charities of San Bernardino and coordinated with community college Dreamer clubs in order to train up DACA screeners in Dreamer leadership and provide free DACA services for undocumented students.
Paul Prescod
Prescod lives in Philadelphia and a member of Working Educators, the reform caucus in the Philadelphia Federation of Teachers.
RL Stephens
Stephens is a labor organizer and former editor at Orchestrated Pulse. He's been published in Jacobin, The Guardian, Black Agenda Report, and Red Pepper. He is now the co-host of "Struggle Session," a new podcast on Jacobin Radio. 
Dustin Guastella
Guastella is a leader in Philly Democratic Socialists of America (DSA) and a coordinator for DSA's National Design Committee. When he isn't organizing for socialism he is studying sociology at Rutgers. 
Javier Miranda
Miranda is a member of the Iowa State University Young Democratic Socialists. He is a steering committee member of the Democratic Socialists of America's Anti-Racism Working Group.
Liz Henderson
Henderson is a member of DSA's National Political committee, and is also an active member of Boston DSA. She previously worked on DSA's Drop Student Debt and We Need Bernie campaigns.