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Building Power for Breakthrough Social Change

January 26, 2010

By: Gita Gulati-Partee and Evangeline Weiss, OpenSource Leadership Strategies, Inc.

Open Source Leadership StrategiesWe are so excited to be back at Creating Change as part of the Academy for Leadership and Action!

Being an organizational partner to the Task Force affirms and gives us a chance to share the models and tools we have developed to build organizational and leadership capacity for breakthrough social change – paradigm-busting shifts that fundamentally alter reality, expanding justice, peace, democracy and sustainability for all. We also feel honored to be part of the Academy because we see it as the gathering place for truly cutting edge, intersectional work across social change movements.

Gita Gulati-Partee


From working with movement building groups across the globe, we’ve seen some recurring patterns that, without attention and intention, can thwart the possibilities for building power and effecting breakthrough social change. The OpenSource team brings two sessions to the 2010 Academy to address some of these challenges and unleash our collective best:

What’s Stop-Starting Me? Internalized Oppression and Supremacy

  • With the complexities of identity and social justice work, many of us find ourselves in spaces where we occupy both marginalized and mainstream identities. What are some of the social messages we have taken in and accepted, messages of both supremacy and oppression? How can we interrupt some of this programming in order to actualize our power, be more true to our selves, and bring a more just voice to the forefront of our work? We’ll look at how internalized oppression and supremacy affects each of us individually, our organizations, and our movement.

Intentional Leadership – Self Awareness in Service of Breakthrough Social Change

  • Discover why we do the things we do! Some people are so easy to work with and some people are just so challenging! What human impulses move us to work the way we do – fast or slow, directive or inclusive, measured or spontaneous? Develop greater self-awareness of your leadership style, tune in to how your style impacts others, and commit to creating a more generative and effective movement.

Both sessions are designed to catalyze activists and allies to locate and use our voices of “confident humility” in order to effect breakthrough social change.

Evangeline Weiss


 As facilitators, we also get to practice “confident humility” – drawing on our experience to create the container for participants to reflect on, share, and learn from their own experience as leaders and change agents.

As we enter not only a new year but also a new decade, breakthrough social change is within our grasp – but only if we fulfill the promise of building a movement that crosses boundaries between our issues, constituencies, strategies, and geographic locations. Once again, Creating Change and the Academy for Leadership and Action create the space to do just that. We look forward to seeing you there!

Check out the full Creating Change 2010 program book for a full list of workshops and events.

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