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Foundation News & Blog
Puffin presents 2015 Puffin/Nation Award Winner Reverend Dr. William J. Barber II
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Reverend Dr. William J. Barber II, volunteer President of the North Carolina NAACP, is the winner of the 2015 Puffin/Nation Prize for Creative Citizenship. The award will be presented to Rev. Barber at The Nation Institute's Annual Gala Dinner on December 8 in New York City.

Reverend Barber — who pastors Greenleaf Christian Church, a 120-year-old congregation in Goldsboro — is the architect of the Forward Together Moral Monday movement, an alliance of more than 200 progressive organizations in North Carolina. The multi-racial, multi-issue grassroots civil disobedience coalition, which began organizing ten years ago, has met at the North Carolina state capitol for the past two years to protest the gutting of voting rights and social programs, and to rally for economic justice, universal healthcare, LGBTQ rights, labor rights, immigrant rights, and public education.

Taya Kitman, Executive Director and CEO of The Nation Institute said, "Reverend Barber is one of our most powerful voices and innovative leaders in a time when, all across the country, we're seeing the power of people standing together to demand social change. Reverend Barber doesn't just inspire; he builds progress from the ground up. At such a pivotal political moment, we are thrilled to recognize his accomplishments in North Carolina, proud to support his exciting plans to come, and honored to award him The Puffin/Nation Prize."

"Reverend Barber is a leader in the fight for true equality for all and a more peaceful world. His efforts to organize everyday citizens and create a movement to fight discriminatory laws are a true example of creative citizenship," said Perry Rosenstein, President of the Puffin Foundation.

Barber commented, "Years ago down in rural Martin County, North Carolina, I was preparing to go off to college. My father gathered members of our church and community in our front yard and had them stand in a circle. He walked me into the middle of that circle and told me never to forget the people who made me who I am. No matter where life took me, he said, I want you to remember them and to always seek to be a servant for justice fairness and the betterment of society. Though many of them have passed, I have never forgotten those people or that lesson.

"I've tried to give and serve, not for money and titles but for the cause of justice and mercy," said Barber. "I am deeply humbled to receive the Puffin Award. With it, I will be reminded of my father's lesson and remember the people of the community, and try with everything in me to keep on serving so that my living will not be in vain."

Rev. Dr. Barber will write an annual report for The Nation magazine on the state of race, civil rights, and the revival of grassroots anti-racism movements, with the first essay appearing in January 2016. The magazine published similar essays by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. from 1961 to 1966. A collection of his Moral Monday speeches — The Third Reconstruction: Moral Mondays, Fusion Politics, and the Rise of a New Justice Movement, will be published by Beacon Press, also in January 2016.

In 2005, Barber was elected President of North Carolina's NAACP, which has become the second largest state conference in the nation. He is one of 64 members of the NAACP National Board of Directors, and is the Chair of the National NAACP's Legislative and Political Action Committee.

In 2006, Barber convened the Historic Thousands on Jones Street (HKonJ) People's Assembly, which champions a 14-point anti-racism, anti-poverty, anti-war agenda. He chairs the Rebuilding Broken Places Community Development Corporation, a nonprofit initiative to revitalize Goldsboro through affordable housing, job training, low-cost child care, and after school tutoring. Rev. Barber is the author of two books: Preaching Through Unexpected Pain and Forward Together: A Moral Message for the Nation.

source: nationinstitute.org

 


Remarks of

Neal Rosenstein

Vice President, Puffin Foundation

Puffin Nation Prize for Creative Citizenship Award to Rev. William Barber II.

December 8, 2015

 

On behalf of Perry and Gladys Rosenstein and the Puffin Foundation, I am honored to announce the winner of this year’s Puffin/Nation Prize for Creative Citizenship.  This annual $100,000 award honors work that challenges the status quo through distinctive, courageous, imaginative and socially responsive work.

Reverend William Barber II, Pastor of the Greenleaf Christian Church in Goldsboro, North Carolina more than exemplifies these goals.  He is the architect of the “Forward Together Moral Monday Movement,” an alliance of more than 200 progressive organizations and vast numbers of the public, in North Carolina and beyond.

This multi-racial, multi-issue grassroots coalition has met weekly at the North Carolina state capitol for the past two years, sometimes with up to 80,000 demonstrators to protest the gutting of voter rights and social programs, and to rally for many issues, including:

Economic Justice

Universal Health Care

LGBTQ Rights

Labor and Immigration Rights & Public Education

Rev. Barber has said (and I quote the Nation so it must be true.) “The history of the white ‘Southern Strategy’ is to keep people divided …. This movement directly challenges that.”

And not only does the Moral Monday movement challenge that divisiveness, it openly recognizes that a truly successful movement must be multiracial, intergenerational and build diverse coalitions of support.

But the Reverend has not only built extraordinary coalitions, he’s also on the front lines himself.  He’s been arrested three times for civil disobedience as he stood for educational and social justice.

Without important work of organizing and resistance like that undertaken by Reverend Barber, we risk becoming apathetic to the rising forces of intolerance and bigotry in our country.

The Puffin/Nation Award is intended to encourage and support the recipients to continue their work and to inspire others to challenge the system and oppression they face and witness in their own lives.

Reverend Barber is a leader in this fight for true equality and social justice.  His efforts to organize everyday citizens and create a movement to fight discriminatory laws are a true example of creative citizenship.

We are honored Tonight to be able to help make this coming year one in which we can share in Reverend Barber ’s victories.  His fight is our fight, and we salute him and stand with him.  Thank you Reverend Barber.

 
Tickets for the Teaneck International Film Festival
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Ticket are available online at BrownPaperTickets.com or in person at Teaneck Cinema and the Teaneck General Store.

Tickets for the Opening Night showing of Althea on Thursday are $10.
All other tickets are $6 in advance or $8 at the door. A weekend pass is $35 (Friday to Sunday).

TIFF Information
201-203-1723
tiff@teaneckfilmfestival.org

Website
http://www.teaneckfilmfestival.org

 
The Puffin Foundation is a proud sponsor of Driving Miss Daisy at the Garage Theatre, now showing through November 8th.
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Driving Miss Daisy, one of modern American Theatre’s most touching and irresistible stories. A treat for all audiences ages 10 to 110, Driving Miss Daisy is a moving story of friendship told with humor, warmth and beauty. Written by Alfred Uhry in 1987 as a tribute to his Atlanta-based family, the play went on to win the Pulitzer Prize for Drama and the Outer Critics Circle Award.  You can purchase tickets at http://garagetheatre.org/.

 
The Garage Theatre 2015
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http://thegaragetheatre.org/

Fall 2015 Schedule

HOLIDAY MELODRAMA
ROD MCGIRDLEBUTT STRIKES BACK OR
THE SUN SETS ON THE CYCLONE RACER ONE LAST TIME
WRITTEN & DIRECTED BY JAMIE SWEET
DECEMBER 4TH – DECEMBER 19TH

 
The Fight for a Living Wage
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Puffin is proud to present a special event:  The New New York Activists: Living City, Living Wage
Thursday, October 1 at 6:30 pm at the Museum of the City of New York.

New York's economic dynamism has long been a hallmark of the city; for centuries, jobs, and opportunity have attracted people to New York from across the nation and around the globe.  Yet today, many New Yorkers find themselves unemployed or working in unsafe conditions for unsustainably low wages.  At a moment of impassioned debate about the right to a "living wage," join us to hear from a diverse range of activists, scholars, journalists, and entrepreneurs who use organized labor, equitable business models, and the media to fight for a more livable and prosperous city -- for all New Yorkers. Reception to follow.

Kendall Fells is the organizing director of the Fight for $15 campaign, which is funded by the Services Employees International Union (SEIU).

Diana Furchtgott-Roth is Senior Fellow at the Manhattan Institute and was chief economist of the U.S. Department of Labor between 2003 and 2005.

Sarah Maslin Nir is a staff reporter for The New York Times who published an influential two-part investigative series about workplace conditions in New York City nail salons in April, 2015.

Jessamyn Rodriguez is the Founder and CEO of Hot Bread Kitchen, a social enterprise bakery supporting low-income, immigrant, and minority entrepreneurs through on-the-job training and business development.

Dorian Warren is political analyst and MSNBC host.

Georgia Levenson Keohane (moderator) is Senior Fellow at New America and Director of the Program on Profits and Purpose.

 

This event is part of the Museum's Activist New York program series, made possible by the Puffin Foundation, co-presented with New America NYC, and co-sponsored by the Murphy Institute for Worker Education & Labor Studies at CUNY.

 
Puffin Cultural Forum Gallery is Open
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The gallery is open to the public from Tuesdays to Thursdays from 12pm to 4pm.  Appointments can be requested by calling 201-836-3499 or emailing info@puffinfoundation.org

Currently on view is exhibition "Thinking in Spanish." In honor of Hispanic Heritage Month, The Puffin Cultural Forum presents works of Josephine Barreiro, Rodriguez Calero, Gabriel Pacheco, and Freddy Rodriguez. Each artist’s unique and personal artistic expression communicates elements of heritage, history, and cultural identity.

The Exhibition will be on view from September 18th to October 31.

 
The Camp at Teaneck Creek
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Puffin Foundation, 20 Puffin Way, Teaneck N.J. 07666
Karen Yucht, Program Coordinator (201) 836-0142
PRESS RELEASE

The Camp at Teaneck Creek, in collaboration with the Teaneck Community Education Center, funded by the Puffin Foundation, provides wonderfully creative end-of-summer experiences for Teaneck children entering grades 2-6. For three weeks, camp is held in “the Great Outdoors,” on the grounds of the Teaneck Creek Conservancy and in the Puffin, at 20 Puffin Way, from 9:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m., August 10-28.

Exciting programs, run by experienced teachers, stimulate the imagination, help to develop new skills, encourage collaboration, provide intellectual stimulation - and hours of fun! Thanks to a generous grant from the Puffin Foundation, the cost per child was minimal and included a special rate membership to the Conservancy.

During the first week (August 10-14), campers entering grades 2-3 enjoyed two wonderful Hobby Quest programs. Kids and Cameras - New Techniques in Photography provided children with professional quality digital cameras and taught them how to point, click, and capture scenery and people through a lens. At the end of the session, friends and family were invited to an exhibition of campers’ photographs. An online “gallery” of their work, and an album of their pictures were theirs to take home. In Making Magic, a real magician provided the tools and secrets that ensure mastery of tricks that will wow audiences. Magic tricks created by the campers were performed in front of an audience and were theirs to keep.

Photo credit: Adam Hecht

 
"Seeing the Power of Political Posters"
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Excerpt from July 31, 2015 Arts II Section of the New York times by Martha Schwendener. Full article here.


“Activist New York” at the Museum of the City of New York is visually challenging, but in a different way. Rather than being focused on art objects, the exhibition is a room-size onslaught of sensory stimulation, complete with videos, graphics and text. The extravagant presentation, created by the firm Pentagram, is reminiscent of what is often seen as the touchstone for revolutionary design installation: El Lissitzky’s pavilion for the Soviet Union at the 1928 “Pressa” exhibition in Cologne, France, which was devoted to the thriving practices of print journalism, advertising and publishing.

A 1970 lithograph from the New-York Historical Society show. Credit Collection of Merrill C. Berman Told through 14 “moments” in New York activism, the exhibition starts with a 1657 episode in which 31 settlers of the Dutch colony of New Netherland (later New York) defended the right of the Quakers to live in the colony — risking their own banishment. It includes a facsimile of the Flushing Remonstrance (1657), a petition for religious tolerance given to Peter Stuyvesant, director-general of the settlement, as well as contemporaneous objects, like a Dutch tobacco box and a Bible.

Other moments in the exhibition focus on the abolitionist movement, the anti-immigrant Nativist Party (Samuel F. B. Morse was one of its creators), women’s suffrage, the struggle for gay and lesbian civil rights, and local environmental activism. Part of what makes “Activist New York” interesting is the “Meet the Activists” kiosks adjacent to each display, which identify activist groups working in the present.

Activist New York is shown in the Puffin Gallery at the Museum of the City of New York.

 
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