We’re living in historic times. Times of great frustration, anger, hope, optimism, divisiveness. Across the country, people are demanding fundamental change to a system that is no longer working for them.
And as goes the nation, so goes Western Colorado. We’re starving for better leadership here. We’re hungering and thirsting for elected officials and institutions with vision and an ethic of working for the people, not just maintaining the tired old status quo.
In this uncertain hour, Western Colorado Congress is reinventing itself to seize the political moment. Together with our allies, we’re building a new movement in our region, and organizing people to challenge old power structures and reclaim our democracy.
We’re excited to step up as the voice for social, economic and environmental justice on the Western Slope – to fight for such causes as a living wage, and fair treatment of communities threatened by industrial-scale oil and gas operations.
We also see tremendous opportunities to offer a positive, inclusive vision for what the Western Slope can and will be. We see the rich potential of clean energy, recreation and local agriculture to rivitalize our local economies, and we’re eager to help our historically energy-extraction-based communities navigate the transition ahead.
In the coming months – starting at our annual conference on Sept. 17 – we’ll be embarking on a long-term process to research the problems our communities need us to organize around, and then to re-engineer WCC accordingly. We won’t limit ourselves to the kinds of issues we’ve worked on these past 36 years; we’ll listen and meet our people where they are.
Funding permitting, we plan to interview hundreds of individuals representing a wide variety of constituencies. And because we’re a grassroots, member-driven organization, we’ll be asking for your help in doing this outreach, and later, we’ll be depending on you, our members, to chart our best course forward.
We want to make Western Colorado Congress the natural home for all who are fed up with partisan gridlock, and just want public policy to be guided by the public good. We want to bring together those who desire to act locally for a fairer, more compassionate world. We want to create a powerful movement of people who believe that democracy only works when ordinary folks have a seat at the table where decisions are made, and that strengthening our democracy is the most patriotic thing we can do.
Our vision is a Western Slope that works for everybody – and community leaders empowered to keep it that way. That’s why leadership development is at the core of all our work, and our chapters function as local leadership training centers. Going forward, we hope to increase our training offerings.
Our strength is in our numbers, so if you’re not already a WCC member, we’re counting on you to join. If you are a member, I encourage you to contact your WCC community organizer to get on our leader track.
And if you’d like to help steer our organizational reinvention, please contact me directly at email@example.com. Decisions are made by those who show up, and that goes for newcomers as well as longtime WCC members!