By Jodie Tonita
Forward Together is one of the very first organizations that I heard refer to having a 100-year strategy. They build long-term power and have led the way, not only in thinking about long-term strategy as an organization, but also in thinking about building power as a network of organizations. Forward Together is thinking into the future and recognizes transformational opportunities to shift culture.
The tools and resources that Forward Together creates — the white papers, reports, research, images, arts and culture — are all necessary in the movement’s efforts to incorporate gender more fully and expansively in social change work. From the New Vision white paper on reproductive justice, which gave so many people a way to explain and live into intersectionality, to their work on mamas day, Forward Together is doing the work year-in and year-out to recognize and honor parents regardless of their gender. Forward Together’s work is so movement minded, really allowing people pathways to incorporate gender and sexuality more fully into their strategy and into how we build power collectively.
It would be remiss of me not to mention Forward Together’s investment in leadership development. I truly believe that their Stepping Into Power program is the leading example of how to build leadership across movements. The work that they have done in introducing forward stance — practices that aren’t only important for Forward Together — has been for the benefit of movement spaces everywhere. The concepts and learnings in forward stance aren’t important just to certain sectors either. Forward stance has spurred huge breakthroughs for the movement itself. And all of this impact comes from the depths of practice and strategy and leadership that Forward Together models and then does the incredibly generous work of developing and sharing.
When it comes to gender, all of Forward Together’s contributions have helped us to have a much more embodied and accessible place to live, create, and in particular, to do our justice work.
Thank you for 30 years!