Friday, April 27, 2007

Ms. Heide Goes To Washington

Antioch University's Environmental Advocacy and Organizing Program Launches Its New US Congressional Progressive Caucus Fellowship: I am very proud to announce that EAOP master’s candidate Crystal Heide will serve as the EAOP’s first Fellow with the U.S. Congressional Progressive Caucus. The Fellowship Program, the first of its kind with the Caucus, is open to EAOP alumni and second-year students.

"I'm very excited to be representing Antioch's Environmental Advocacy and Organizing Program in Washington, D.C., this summer. I can't wait to put all the skills I've learned during the past two years into practice,” said Heide.

Ms. Heide will work with Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva (D-AZ, 7th Congressional District), who chairs the House Committee on Natural Resources’s Subcommittee on National Parks, Forests and Public Lands. Rep. Grijalva also heads the Progressive Caucus’s Environment Task Force and has been recognized as a leader in environmental conservation by the Sierra Club and Defenders of Wildlife. “I am honored to participate with the Congressional Progressive Caucus in Antioch University’s Environmental Advocacy and Organizing Program’s Fellowship, and I welcome this year’s Fellow, Crissy Heide,” said Rep. Grijalva. “With Ms. Heide’s contribution, we will develop a model for border community environmental protection and economic enhancement that can be replicated by many border communities.”

“The Fellowship is a tremendous opportunity for Antioch New England students and graduates to enhance their skills and learning through public service,” said EAOP faculty member Abigail Abrash Walton. “We are thrilled to launch this collaboration with the Congressional Progressive Caucus.”

The co-chairs of the CPC are also excited about this new partnership with Antioch Univerity New England. "I am so pleased that we have established the very first fellowship program for Members of the Congressional Progressive Caucus with Antioch University New England," underscored CPC Co-Chair U.S. Representative Lynn Woolsey (D-CA). "One of the CPC’s top priorities is strengthening environmental protection and achieving energy independence, and having graduate students like Ms. Heide from ANE's Environmental Advocacy and Organizing Program will help us to achieve these goals."

"This is the start of a great, mutually beneficial collaboration between the CPC and ANE students and faculty," CPC Co-Chair U.S. Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA) noted. “ANE’s Environmental Advocacy & Organizing Program graduate students will help CPC Members address a wide variety of environmental challenges from global warming to environmental justice."

Crissy came to Antioch’s EAOP after two years of working in the field of environmental education in rural New Jersey. During her graduate studies, she has organized Keene’s Earth Day Festival, the recent Step It Up Congress Rally in Keene, worked on Sierra Club’s Cool Cities Campaign, chaired Antioch’s Student Alliance, and has worked with Rhode Island’s Valley Alliance for Smart Growth to ensure wetlands protection on lands slated for big-box-store development. Crissy was raised in Indiana, where she graduated from Lafayette Jefferson High School and received a BS in Wildlife Science from Purdue University.

I am personally thrilled to announce Crissy's participation in this new partnership between the EAOP and the CPC. For those who don't know much about the CPC, a handful of members of the U.S. House of Representatives first established the Congressional Progressive Caucus in the early 1990s “to give voice to the needs and aspirations of all Americans and to build a more just and humane society.” Now numbering 72 members, the Caucus’s platform for action is The Progressive Promise -- Fairness for All, grounded in four core principles: 1. fighting for economic justice and security for all; 2. protecting and preserving civil rights and civil liberties; 3. promoting global peace and security; and 4. environmental protection & energy independence.

We wish Crissy great luck in this new endeavor!