Eric K. Ward

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Eric K. Ward

Template:TOCnestleft Eric K. Ward is Executive Director of the Western States Center. Eric K. Ward was Program Officer, Gender, Racial, and Ethnic Justice of Ford Foundation from 2014-17.

Married to Jessica Acee.

"A letter from the movement to the movement'

In September 2019 Eric K. Ward was one of 100 black leaders, many affiliated with Liberation Road who signed A letter from the movement to the movement defending Maurice Moe Mitchell and Nelini Stamp of the Working Families Party for endorsing Elizabeth Warren instead of Bernie Sanders for the Democratic Party presidential nomination.

Ford Foundation Bio

"Eric K. Ward works on the Gender, Racial, and Ethnic Justice team. His grant making has supported the consolidation of progress achieved in combating inequality and promoted the dismantling of institutional discrimination and other barriers to full participation that racial and ethnic minorities and indigenous peoples continue to experience in society.
"Eric has a long and distinguished career as a social justice advocate, working over the past 20 years with local, state, and national organizations to implement strategies for change around racial justice and immigrant rights. Before joining the foundation in 2014, he was a program executive for Reconciliation and Human Rights, United States, at the Atlantic Philanthropies, where he helped guide US grant making in the areas of immigration, national security and rights, and civic participation and engagement.
"Previously, Eric served as national field director for the Center for New Community, a national civil rights organization based in Chicago. He also served as publisher and contributor for Imagine 2050, supervising a daily blog exploring race, immigration, and American identity through politics, narratives, culture, and sports. He has served on the boards of America’s Voice, Western States Center, the McKenzie River Gathering Foundation, and A Territory Resource Foundation.
"Originally from Los Angeles, Eric attended the University of Oregon, where he began his organizing career assisting in the formation of over 100 local human rights organizations in Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Washington, and Wyoming at a time when the white supremacist movement was engaged in violent paramilitary activity that sought to undermine minority rights and the democratic process in the Pacific Northwest. During this period, he was one of a handful of prominent leaders of color working to counter this new manifestation of organized hate and, through his work, successfully encouraged violent neo-Nazi youth to renounce racism and violence.[1]

Western States Center Bio

"A national expert on the relationship between hate violence and preserving democratic institutions, governance, and inclusive societies, Eric brings nearly 30 years of expertise in community organizing and philanthropy to his role as Western States Center’s Executive Director.
"Originally from Los Angeles, Eric began his civil rights work when the white nationalist movement was engaged in violent paramilitary activity that sought to undermine democratic governance in the Pacific Northwest. Eric founded and directed a community project to expose and counter hate groups and respond to bigoted violence with the Community Alliance of Lane County (1990–1994). With the Northwest Coalition Against Malicious Harassment (1994-2002) Eric worked with government leaders, civil rights campaigners, businesses leaders, and law enforcement officials to establish over 120 task forces in Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Washington, and Wyoming. As one of a handful of prominent leaders of color working to counter this new manifestation of organized hate, Eric successfully encouraged some violent neo-Nazi leaders to renounce racism and violence. Joining the Center for New Community as National Field Director (2003-2011), Eric assisted immigrant rights advocates in addressing the growing influence of xenophobia on public policy.
"As Program Executive for The Atlantic Philanthropies’ U.S. Reconciliation and Human Rights Programme (2011-2014), Eric led grantmaking in immigration and national security and rights. Eric’s grantmaking as a Ford Foundation Program Officer (2014-2017) supported efforts to combat inequality. Eric has consulted extensively with philanthropic institutions across the country including the Open Society Foundation, and co-founded Funders For Justice (a project of the Neighborhood Funders Group). Eric has volunteered with numerous philanthropic and community-based organizations and is currently on the boards of The Proteus Fund and Revolutions Per Minute (RPM), a nonprofit agency that provides artists with strategy and support for their activism and philanthropy.
"A contributor to the Progressive Media Project from 2008-2014, Eric has been quoted and cited extensively by national media and is the editor of three published works: Conspiracies: Real Grievances, Paranoia and Mass Movements; Second Civil War: States’ Rights, Sovereignty; and Power of the County and American Armageddon: Religion, Revolution and the Right.[2]

Testified at Portland United Against Hate

Western States Center Tweet from May 2018: "We're testifying today at Portland City Council in support of PUAH - or Portland United Against Hate."

Western States Center testified in favor of Portland United Against Hate.[3]

Tagged on the tweet were Portland City Commissioner Chloe Eudaly, Amanda Fritz, Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler, Kari Koch, and Eric K. Ward.[4] Western States Center tweeted that they were accompanied by Unite Oregon, Urban League, Q Center and Coalition of Color.

Eric K. Ward was quoted as testifying: "Let me be clear: when you have a growing social movement invested in ethnic cleansing, hate violence is the logical outcome. Hate violence is white nationalist ideology in practice."[5]

National Leading From the Inside Out Alum

Eric K. Ward, Executive Director, Western States Center was a 2019 Rockwood Leadership Institute National Leading From the Inside Out Alum.[6]


Left Labor Project held a forum at 1199 SEIU, 310 W 43rd St, 14 January 2016, 18:00 till Thursday 14 January 2016.

The run-up to the Presidential primaries has unleashed a right-wing frenzy that's unprecedented in its naked scapegoating and repressive policy ideas. How do we analyze and respond to these developments, through our labor and community groups, and in the electoral arena? What new alliances, campaigns, and demands do we need?

Those signalling their support, or intention to attend on the events Wherevent page included Dara Silverman, Audrey Sasson, Jill Greenberg, Michael Dormo, Dennis Hart, David Mirtz, John Tarleton, Katrina Marie, Robert Ambaras, Ethan Frey, Maureen Silverman, Scarlett Ahmed, Caroline Unger, Emiljana Ulaj, Dahlia Goldenberg, Jessica Acee, Ferdinand Joseph, Kate Aronoff, Greg Dunkel, IrieAndrea LeDawes, Kristi Barnes, Nora Taggart, Mark Duran, Patrick Loman, Marion Lipshutz, Mindy Rubinstein-Rosier, Dego Adely, Marcus Meute, Gee Nimius, Mary Boger, Ellen Gurzinsky, Glorya Cabrera, Prince Manlaw King, Eric K. Ward, Joseph Phelan, Vince Kelley, Christine Williams, Plinio Cruz-Alvarez, Leon Pinsky, Dennis O'Neil, Eduardo Hugo Gil, John McCarthy, John Treat, David Salay, Kate Spaulding, Mohammad A. Khan, Charles Lenchner, Joshua Clennon, Chris Barron, Robel Tekleab, Jose Mangasha, Paolo Cremidis, John Dennie, Zach Liszka, Edgar E. Avalos, M. Dove Kent, Kristina Antonia Mazzocchi, John Ennis, Jon Zaccarini, Eljeer Hawkins, Bob Ratynski, Lorraine Barcant, Anne Mitchell, [7]