Named one of the “100 most powerful African Americans” in 2010, the Reverend Lennox Yearwood Jr. is a powerful voice in the social justice community and we are delighted to announce he will be joining us as a keynote speaker for Social Change Institute 2014.

As President and CEO of the Hip Hop Caucus, Rev. Yearwood leads the organization in inspiring and organizing young people around elections, policy-making and service projects. 2008’s “Respect My Vote” campaign helped turn out record numbers of young people for election day in the United States, demonstrating his capacity as an organizer.

Rev. Yearwood was also intimately involved with post-Katrina disaster relief as National Director of the award winning Gulf Coast Renewal Campaign and co-creator of “Vote or Die” with Sean “P Diddy” Combs. Needless to say, the Social Change Institute Community will be lucky to glean insight into the Reverend’s capacities as an organizer around social and civic issues.

We really love this post by writer Richard Whittaker that came out of SXSW Eco, last year, and features details of the Rev.’s talk. It offers up a window into what we might hear from him at Social Change Institute. And if you really want to dive into conversations around democracy, climate change, civil and human rights, and economic empowerment with the Rev, we highly recommend you watch his talk at SXSW Eco with our very own Executive Producer, Cara Pike. Brian Merchant of Vice Magazine facilitated the talk — he’s joining us at Social Change Institute this year, too.

Every year upwards of 100 social change leaders convene for Social Change Institute at Hollyhock. This June 11th – 15th, passionate professionals from nonprofits and public agencies; social entrepreneurs and innovators; consultants and social impact leaders will gather at our beautiful retreat centre on Cortes Island. Focusing on tools, connections and leadership, we’ll draw from the inspiration of the environment around us, the company we keep and the leaders we listen to in order to hone our skills on behalf of the social change sector. Apply now to attend.

Photo Courtesy the Vancouver Observer. Read their excellent article on this talk, here.