Thomas Edward Pearce was Co-Chair of the American Indian Movement of Indiana and Kentucky. He has been organizing solidarity rallies for Idle No More and mobilizing support for the movement. He is closely associated with the Freedom Road Socialist Organization. He is the Associate Regional Organizing Representative at Sierra Club, Louisville, Kentucky Area.
He is of Ojibway ancestry. Died in May 2019.
"Columbus was lost"
- This button dates from the runup to the Columbus Quincentennial in 1992, an event which ironically marked a qualitative leap forward in the drive to end the glorification of the genocidal navigator and the European world domination he kicked into overdrive.
- It became a big fat hit among young anti-racist activists. It (and a companion tee-shirt) were designed and produced locally in Louisville, KY by Average Tom Pearce, a young American Indian Movement activist (who is still at it today, almost a quarter century later). Those buttons and shirts, along with the Columbus Discovered America—NOT tee-shirts designed by graphix ace ERK were mainstays on Freedom Road and Progressive Student Network lit tables that year.
Thomas Pearce contributed an article to Freedom Road Socialist Organization's Forward Motion, January/February issue 1993 "Thinking about dynamite:at war against the lies." Thomas Pearce was executive director of Kentuckiana Native American Support Group, and a representative of the American Indian Movement.
The Sierra Club was front & center on the NBC and ABC evening news broadcasts in western Kentucky April 2011 after area residents packed a hearing at the McCracken County courthouse to weigh in on a proposed coal terminal and near the Ohio River in West Paducah.
"Homeowners aren't happy," reported WPSD Channel 6 News on March 16, "and the Sierra Club joined the opposition tonight at the McCracken County zoning board meeting to fight the plan."
The segment featured Dianna Riddick, chair of the Club's Great Rivers Group, walking in a local nature preserve and explaining why the coal terminal was a bad idea. "We believe there's a risk with such close proximity to the Ohio River and the nature preserve," she said. "We need to think about responsible stewardship of our lands. Let's be smart about what we're doing and not make mistakes we've made in the past."
Riddick was prominently featured in several media accounts of the zoning commission meeting. "Just say no to coal," Riddick told ABC affiliate WISL TV. "We don't want it, we don't need it. Let's invest in smart jobs and renewable energy."
A possible coal-to-liquid-gas plant is also being discussed, and so many citizens turned out to speak that the meeting lasted three hours. "We turned out 200 people, and everyone was given signs that said NO in big letters," says Sierra Club organizer Thomas Pearce.
Representatives from Southern Coal Handling, which wants to build the terminal, showed a video extolling the virtues of a similar coal plant in another city. But opponents countered with their own video, featuring interviews with neighbors of that plant who said the noise and dust were horrible.
"We're organizing with area residents, who are circulating petitions," says Pearce, who has helped create a new Beyond Coal team in the Great Rivers Group. "Before the meeting we did door-to-door outreach around the proposed terminal site, met neighborhood leaders who oppose the plan, and turned out several families to the hearing who hadn't been previously contacted."
The proposal was defeated.
Kentucky Jobs with Justice leadership as of 2014;
Executive Director - Bonifacio Aleman
Board of Directors
- Thomas Pearce, Co-Chair, Beyond Coal Campaign, Kentucky Sierra Club
- Robert Smith, Co-Chair, SEIU 32BJ NCFO
- Tammy Berlin, Secretary, Jefferson County Teachers Association
- Jackie Floyd, Treasurer, Community
- Harold Embry, UFCW Local 227
- Lillian Williamson, Coalition of Black Trade Unionists
- Donald Duncan, Community
- Bryan Burns, Community/Student
- Bill Londrigan, KY AFL-CIO
- John Paul Wright, Community
- Lawrence Winburn, Jr., LiUNA Local 576
Jobs with Justice Kentucky Chapter July 19, 2014.
Have you picked up your copy of Action Lines -Summer 2014 edition (our newsletter)?
HINT: you can pick up copies on Monday, July 21st at Smokey's Bean between 7am-5pm!.
- SocialJustice — with David O'Brien Suetholz, John Paul Wright, DeeAnn Flaherty, Brent McKim, Barbie Helton, Tia Kurtisnger-Edison, Brian O'Neill, Tammy Berlin, Alicia Hurle, Jackie Floyd, Emma Dill, Lillian Williamson, Will Emmons, Sarah Zarantonello, Michele Hemenway, Shantii Waybrieal, Larry Hovekamp, Sandy Balsley Mayes, Donald Duncan, Jennifer Jewell, Pam Newman, Betty Jean Parsons Johnson, Teresa McGeeney, Becki Winchel, Dave Nothere, Debi Baldwin, Barbara Boyd, Erica Wilen O'Brien, Richard Becker, Robert Smith, SayRah Wilburn-Clark, Thomas Edward Pearce, Sarah Garrett, Netra Edwards, Jaison Ashley Gardner, Harold Embry, Neal Cotton, Eliot Zellers, Voting Rights for Former Felons - Kentucky and Service Workers for Justice.
- website Native American Activists Talk Idle No More, Posted on Monday February 11th, 2013 by Robert Caldwell, Firewolf Bizahaloni-Wong and Thomas Pearce
- [http://freedomroad.org/2015/10/button-up-11-columbus-was-lost/FRSO Button Up! #12 – Columbus Was Lost Posted on Friday October 9th, 2015 by FRSO/OSCL]
- by NegroGato at 1:58 PM No comments: Proposed Coal Terminal Defeated in Western Kentucky
- about, accessed Dec. 6, 2014