Labor Neighbor Research & Training Center (LNRTC) is a 501c3 corporation whose mission is to further the development of research, training, organizing, educational, and communication programs that advance community and labor work and partnerships.  The projects housed within LNRTC perfectly demonstrate our mission:

  • Social Policy Magazine has been publishing for more than 30 40 years and has been one of the clear and outstanding vehicles for organizers, academics, policy makers, and others to think and debate the issues involved in community and workplace policy, advocacy, and organization.  The magazine which is dedicated to “Organizing for Social and Economic Justice” is published quarterly on a seasonal basis.  

  • Social Policy Press first published Lessons from the Field:  Organizing in Rural Communities, edited by Joe Szakos and Kristin Layng Szakos, in 2008.  This spring the press will release, Global Grassroots:  Perspectives on International Organizing, edited by Wade Rathke, and on the anniversary of Hurricane Katrina plans to issue Battle for the Ninth Ward:  ACORN and the Rebuilding of New Orleans, After the Storm and at 5 Years Later by Wade Rathke.


  • Organizers’ Forum has been a project for more than 10 years and creates dialogues for community and labor organizers as well as other activists both domestically in North America and aboard.  The on-going program has been the Organizers’ Forum International Dialogue which has seen annual delegations travel in the early fall to meet organizers, leaders, and activists in other countries doing equivalent work so there can be a learning exchange that advances the work and the capacity for the US and Canadian delegates as well as the country visited.  In past years the International Dialogue has been held in Brazil, India, South Africa, Indonesia, Turkey, Russia, Australia, Thailand, and Vietnam.  In 2011 the dialogue will be held in Cairo, Egypt.

    Photos from past delegations in Thailand, Russia, and Australia

H. L. Mitchell


  • H. L. Mitchell Scholarship Fund is proudly housed at LNRTC since 2010.  The late H. L. Mitchell was the outstanding farm labor organizer of the 20th Century prior to Cesar Chavez beginning with the pioneering Southern Tenant Farmers Union (STFU) in eastern Arkansas on through a succession of unions of farmworkers, sugar cane workers, menhaden fishermen, and others.  A fund was established after his death to encourage young people to follow Mitch’s footsteps and advance his legacy in Arkansas, Louisiana, Tennessee, and Alabama.  Mitch’s son, Samuel Mitchell, from Ottawa, Ontario is the chief advisor to the fund and the internships being organized as its major program.  LNRTC advises and assists with implementation of the program.



  • Paladin Partners is the newest project of LNRTC thanks to a generous closing grant from the Paradox Fund of the Tides Foundation.  More information on Paladin is located elsewhere on this site.



The LNRTC board is composed of Ken Johnson (Atlanta), Mildred Edmond (New Orleans), Jim Sessions (Knoxville), Sheila Frazier (Houston), Rick Smith (St. Petersburg), Drummond Pike (San Francisco), and Wade Rathke (New Orleans).

The Advisory Board of the Organizers’ Forum is John Calkins (Miami), Tho Thi Do (San Francisco), Mary Gonzales (Chicago), Sarita Gupta (Washington), Ken Johnson (Atlanta), Michael Kieschnick (San Francisco), Pat Sweeney (Billings), Mary Rowles (Vancouver), Wade Rathke (Chair, New Orleans), Kirk Adams (New York City), Gustavo Torres (Silver Spring, MD), Josh Hoyt (Chicago).


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