Acknowledgments
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ACKNOWLEDGMENTS A wise friend once told me, “If you want to get something done, ask someone who’s overcommitted.” I owe a large debt to the many overcommitted individuals who made the time to help write this book. Ranging in discipline from public health education, social work, medicine, and community psychology to law, urban and regional planning, and political and social science, they were invited because of their demonstrated commitment to health and social equity. But they also were selected because of their gifts in telling their stories and sharing the theory, methods, tools, and perspectives that are so central to community organizing and community building practice. Each writes from the heart, and their combination of passion and professionalism has contributed greatly to the final product. Although all the authors gave selflessly, I am particularly indebted to my friend and colleague Cheryl Hyde, who helped me envision a new book that would expand its lens to more broadly address social work macro practice, as well as the isms and the centrality of critical self-reflection on power and privilege in our work. Her gifts as a scholar and practitioner are evident in her several written contributions, and in less visible ways throughout the new volume. I am also deeply grateful to the team at Rutgers University, and particularly to my editor, Peter Mickulas, who believed in this project from the beginning, and to Larissa Klein, Suzanne Kellam, Romaine Perin, and Bryce Schimanski, who helped make this final edition a reality. Many colleagues, practitioners, and community activists have shared with my fellow authors and me case studies and examples, ethical dilemmas faced in practice, and new ways of conceptualizing key aspects of community organizing and community building. Although too numerous to mention here by name, their contributions are cited throughout the book, and they are deserving of special thanks and recognition. Like many of my coauthors, I have been blessed in the choice of a profession that places a strong emphasis on the centrality of empowerment and social justice for health and well-being. Numerous public health leaders and social justice activists have inspired me in their unstinting efforts to promote health and social equity, but several in particular—Angela Glover Blackwell, Joyce Lashof, Pam Tau Lee, Shaw San Liu, Henrik Blum, H. Jack Geiger, Gary Grant, Donald Minkler, Naeema Mahammad, S. Leonard Syme, Dorothy Nyswander, Victor xv Sidel, Arnold Perkins, and Steve Wing—have been special role models, to whom I am deeply grateful. My colleagues at the School of Public Health have been a tremendous source of support and encouragement, and I wish to acknowledge especially those current and former colleagues in community health education and health and social behavior who have contributed to my own thinking in the areas of community organizing, community building, and health disparities: Ray Catalano, Darlene Francis, Denise Herd, Leonard Duhl, Seth Holmes, Rachel Morello-Frosch, Amani Nuru Jeter, Emily Ozer, Cheri Pies, William Satariano, S. Leonard Syme, William Vega, and Lawrence Wallack. The school’s staff, and particularly Ghada Haddad and Teresa Liu, have also been wonderful sources of support and encouragement. I also owe a great debt to my colleagues at PolicyLink, and especially Angela Glover Blackwell, Judith Bell, Victor Rubin, and Mildred Thompson, whose commitment to “lifting up what works”™ and using the lessons of community building on the ground to help inform and shape healthy public policy, is a source of tremendous inspiration. Like its predecessors, this third edition owes its existence to my current and former gradate students at the University of California, Berkeley, and I owe them immense gratitude for teaching me far more about community organizing, community building, and cultural humility than I could ever have hoped to teach them. Although too numerous to name, my doctoral students in particular have influenced my thinking and expanded my horizons, while also becoming treasured friends and colleagues, and working with them, as well as my MPH students, has been a blessing and an honor. My other best teachers have been people on the front lines, and I wish to acknowledge especially some of my early and more recent teachers—restaurant workers in Chinatown and members and staff of the Chinese Progressive Association and the former Tenderloin Senior Organizing Project, Concerned Citizens of Tillery, the Gray Panthers, the former Youth Empowerment Strategies Project, the disability rights movement, and the staff and Youth Community Council members of CHAMACOS. Their leaders and members have deepened my understanding of what committed organizing and...



Subject Headings

  • Health promotion.
  • Community health services -- Citizen participation.
  • Community organization.
  • Community development.
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