Someone I resontate with Gibrán Rivera
“Together we can do what we could not do alone.” With this in mind, Gibrán’s job is to help people work better together. He is a consultant committed to the development of leaders, organizations and networks and uses coaching, training, process design and facilitation in service of those who are committed to social transformation.
Gibrán works with people who understand that we must take our next evolutionary leap. In keeping with the overall focus of IISC, Gibrán uses three lenses in his approach to collaborative leadership:
- Shifting dynamics of power, equity and inclusion
- Shifting from organizations to networks
- Building beloved community
Gibrán’s graduate studies were in diplomacy and processes of negotiation and mediation. He has devoted much of his work life to the idea of democracy and to the work of emancipatory politics in urban communities.
Gibrán’s approach to his work today is particularly influenced by the work of Robert Gass, founder of the Rockwood Leadership Institute; C. Otto Scharmer and his peers at the Presencing Institute; the work and writings of Grace Lee Boggs at the Boggs Center in Detroit; and the forward thinking work of John Powell and the Kirwan Institute.
History is Here Today
When the injustice done to Mike Brown and Eric Garner unfolded before our very eyes we witnessed the racial fault lines in this country as they made themselves painfully obvious. I witnessed anger, misunderstanding and resentment. I saw an oppressed community blamed, questioned and invalidated when we chose to protest and scream at injustice.
This is what happens when people don’t understand history. It is what happens when people don’t co-exist in community, in the context of authentic relationship.
It is what happens when we don’t understand that structural oppression is manifested across generations.
Lynching in America: Confronting the Legacy of Racial Terror, the horrific report released by the Equal Justice Initiative, and reported by the New York Times, is a painful but helpful way to give historical context to people’s rage.
The report names 4,000 lynchings between 1877 and 1950. 1950 was not too long ago; do you know anyone over 65?
It is good to claim our nation’s contribution to the idea of freedom and democracy. And it is also impossible to skip over the darker parts of our history. All of history is with us today.
“That was a long time ago” simply isn’t good enough.
Let us have the courage to face where we come from and let us have the dignity to right our wrongs.