Exemplifying cross-movement learning, George Goehl presents at a fellowship seminar in 2011.

Build Peer Community + Individual Learning + Lead Social Movements

An intentional aspect of the program, gathering peers together is necessary to building trust and lasting relationships. Prime Movers convene in various settings—from informal gatherings to more formal seminars, retreats, and peer-to-peer phone calls. As a peer community, fellows openly discuss common issues and discover new pathways for leading change. Activities include:

  • Seminars
    Fellows opt into seminars covering everything from movement strategy and personal strategic positioning to theoretical discussions related to mobilizing masses of people. The program may bring in experts to inform conversation. For example, one seminar examined public narrative through Marshall Ganz’ curriculum on identity, agency, and action.
  • Reflection Retreats
    Fellows participate in a two and a half-day retreat, cloistered away from the demands of movement leadership. The time spent together focuses on a mixture of movement-based conversation and relationship building.
  • Peer-to-Peer Calls
    Prime Movers nourish one another as leaders and discuss current issues that are “top of mind.” The peer community selects topics and fellows take turns serving as facilitators. The goal of the conversation is to have concrete takeaways for participants.

Build Peer Community + Individual Learning + Lead Social Movements

Prime Movers receive $60,000 in grant funds for customized professional development. The grant is distributed over the first two years of their fellowship and is strictly for individual development purposes, not organizational support.

Each fellow develops a work plan to guide their individual professional development. Activities range widely. Prime Movers have used funds to:

  • Hire an executive coach
  • Hire a public speaking coach
  • Hire a media consultant
  • Attend a media training
  • Attend a leadership program
  • Write a handbook or guide to support your movement
  • Write a book
  • Convene other leaders in their field

Build Peer Community + Individual Learning + Lead Social Movements

Prime Movers lead social movements—vital work that has no end. By participating in fellowship’s collective activities and individual skill building, our fellows are asked to think beyond their organizations and take on broader, more pivotal roles within their movements.

Social movements have repeatedly re-woven the tapestry of our country’s history, and we have chosen to invest in men and women who will bend the arc of history toward justice. Our fellows engage millions in pursuit of social change, thus strengthening civic engagement across the United States.

Prime Movers: Cultivating Social Capital

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