CFS Seminar with Marshall Ganz
Senior lecturer in public policy at the Harvard University John F. Kennedy School of Government and social justice champion Marshall Ganz presented Moral Leadership and the Challenges We Face Today on Wednesday, April 25, 2012. Ganz's book Why David Sometimes Wins was available for purchase and signing at the seminar. The CFS Spring Seminar Series is an annual event that is open to the public free of charge. Registration was recommended. Seating was limited.
Marshall Ganz grew up in Bakersfield, California, where his father was a Rabbi and his mother a teacher. He entered Harvard College in the fall of 1960. In 1964, a year before graduating, he left to volunteer with the Mississippi Summer Project. He found a "calling" as an organizer for the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, and, in the fall of 1965, he joined Cesar Chavez in his effort to unionize the California farm workers. Over the next 16 years with the United Farm Workers, he gained invaluable experience in union, community, issue, and political organizing; became Director of Organizing; and was elected to the national executive board on which he served for eight years.
During the 1980s, Ganz worked with grassroots groups to develop effective organizing programs and designed innovative voter mobilization strategies for local, state, and national electoral campaigns. In 1991, in order to deepen his intellectual understanding of his work, he returned to Harvard College and, after a 28-year "leave of absence," completed his undergraduate degree in history and government. He was awarded an MPA by the Kennedy School in 1993 and completed his PhD in sociology in 2000.
As senior researcher in public policy at the Kennedy School of Government, Ganz teaches, researches, and writes on leadership, organization, and strategy in social movements, civic associations, and politics. He has published in the American Journal of Sociology, American Political Science Review, American Prospect, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, and elsewhere.
Ganz's newest book Why David Sometimes Wins: Leadership, Organization, and Strategy in the California Farm Worker Movement was published in 2009, earning the Michael J. Harrington Book Award of the American Political Science Association. He was awarded an honorary doctorate in divinity by the Episcopal Divinity School, in 2010.