Vision and Mission
The vision of Community Governance Partnership is to break down long standing barriers between conservation, labor, small business, social justice and environmental justice organizations to form and facilitate pragmatic, action-based progressive partnerships in California's Central Valley and Northern counties.
The Community Governance Partnership exists to empower others, through a combination of campaign development, directed trainings, partnership development and assisting with community-based actions that tie into larger issues. Our mission is to see key social and environmental issues raised through new community alliances, to address key planning and conservation issues with new tools and innovative campaigns, to break down barriers between diverse interests, and to make our partners' work more effective.
Approach and History
The Community Governance Partnership is the TIDES sponsored 501c3 arm of Leadership For Jobs and a New Economy, or LJANE (501c4), and was created to fully separate our 501c3 work from our other activities.
In addition to continuing our support of the Central Valley Partnership, we are in the process of establishing new broad-based, regional partnerships in the counties of rural Northern California around our Cannabis Removal on Public Lands Project (CROP).
Our project work is often supported by these partnerships, which we develop and facilitate, as was done with the Fresno Partnership (now the 501c3 Central Valley Partnership). In early 2013, we brought together over 40 labor, environmental and community organizations in Fresno to identify common values and put aside minor differences in order to organize and stand together on social and environmental issues like healthcare and income inequality—and then to stand together on public education and voter registration in election years. The Fresno Partnership succeeded in creating a new alliance between labor and community groups, and helped us to establish a new organizing paradigm.
In 2017, we began organizing work to solve the seemingly intractable problem of illicit cannabis growing on public lands. The CROP Project has developed into a major project with broad-based, bipartisan support, and represents the only citizen-based effort to leverage state and federal resources to clean up trespass grows in Northern California.
Campaigns of any type have organizing at their core, which is why we have developed the California Organizing Academy. Originally created by our Executive Director as the Sierra Community Organizer Academy in 2009, this intensive, two-day training based on the Midwest Academy Model teaches community activists how to identify and influence power, build coalitions and establish winning campaigns. We then provide mentorship, counsel and support to the 405 graduates of the program, 35 of whom now run non-profit organizations.
Our trainings are often the first step many people take in public service. There are now 27 elected officials, including Supervisors, City Council members, and a member of the California State Assembly who credit these past trainings as the start of their political careers. The next training is planned for Mendocino County and Lake County in 2019.
Our Strategic Mentoring program utilizes the skills and experience of past elected officials to teach newly elected the skills and techniques of governance. Using the appointment process, policy initiatives, reaching out to constituencies, model ordinances and resolutions, holding town halls and government efficiency are elements covered in this program.
Community Governance Partnership Team
Rich has been involved in conservation and electoral politics for most his career, serving in senior positions on Presidential and Senate campaign staffs, running a key 2016 California Assembly Special Election, and developing and running national and regional conservation campaigns. He was the Water Program Director at Food and Water Watch in DC, and Political Director for The Sierra Nevada Alliance, where he founded what would become The California Organizing Academy. With the help of organized labor and the conservation community, he founded our c4, Leadership For Jobs and a New Economy in 2012, and our c3, The Community Governance Partnership. He has trained over 500 organizers and political candidates, all with an eye to making the world a more just place.
David is noted as one of the world’s top community organizer trainers, having trained over 3000 activists in his career. His 25 years experience in the community development and citizen empowerment field gives him a special interest in working with community-based organizations. He has been working with the CGP team for over a decade. He continues to work with The Midwest Academy where he spent many years on staff, and whose approach and techniques are embraced in our trainings. David is a legendary storyteller, which makes his trainings unique and memorable.
Regional Field Director
Jackee's fervor for the natural world has fueled her career as a wildlife biologist and archaeologist, backcountry horse packer, and finally as the co-founder and Executive Director of Cannabis for Conservation, a new 501(c)(3) nonprofit. She graduated from Humboldt State University with a B.S. in Wildlife Management and Conservation, and a B.A. in Archaeology. She has worked for the US Fish & Wildlife Service and private organizations conducting wildlife research on endangered species including gray whales, desert tortoises, and Pacific fishers. Notably, her independent research of nesting shorebirds led to FWS protections and management of Salt Island in Connecticut. A graduate of our community organizer program, we immediately saw her potential. She joins us now to assist with CROP.
Patrick von Bargen
Patrick has a deep resume in campaigns and politics, and helps identify management and political talent from the non-profit community for mentoring and coaching. Patrick also is engaged in our organizer trainings, and works through our c4 (LJANE) on campaign training and coaching. His knowledge of Congress and the appropriations process was honed as Chief of Staff and Campaign Manager to Senator Jeff Bingaman (D-NM), and as Chief of Staff for the US Securities and Exchange Commission. Patrick headed the National Commission on Entrepreneurship, was the CEO of the Kauffman Fellows Program, and is a graduate of Yale School of Management, Stanford Law School and Stanford University.
Valerie is an avid outdoor adventurer and environmental advocate. She graduated from St. Cloud State University in Northern Minnesota with a B.S. in Environmental Studies as well as a Paralegal Certificate. Her passion for environmental advocacy led her to work for Rinke-Noonan Law Firm in environmental litigation, where she advocated for community environmental justice and equality. She has also worked within the state park systems and has volunteered with non-profit environmental organizations.
The Board of Directors of CGP consist of recognized senior leadership from well-known California-based organizations, who direct the activities of a small, highly experienced organizing and environmental campaign staff.
Richard A. McIntyre, President
Howard Penn, Executive Director/Planning Conservation League
Michael Evans, Chair