Highlander’s Electoral Justice programming, led by Denzel Caldwell, is supporting communities across the U.S. and global South in defending and protecting democracy this year.

Denzel joined a delegation to Cuba earlier this year to learn more about economic and governance solutions and how blockade policies are impacting communities there. These lessons are being shared back with communities in our region who are organizing to shift their own work and local governance toward deeper collective decision-making and democratic principles and practices.

Denzel is also developing a Critical Civics curriculum to support organizers and community groups in strengthening their understanding of local systems and structures impacting policies and decision-making and to accompany folks on the ground who are envisioning and developing solutions to build power together and create more just processes and practices.

Learn more: denzel@highlandercenter.org

Denzel joined the Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund in May for a “Community Resilience in the Midst of Chaos” webinar. 

CELDF and the roster of organizers, thinkers, and advocates discussed community resilience to tackle such questions as:

  • What does community resilience look like?
  • How can building community resilience lead to community resistance to the oppressive aspects of the system?
  • Can the efforts of community aid become the norm vs. the outlier?
  • Can we trust one another that we are more capable than those who run the systems that have either caused the growing number of community disasters and/or failed to serve the community in the moment and after?”

Read our 2022 Electoral Justice Report!


Highlander’s Electoral Justice work is proposed, designed, and executed by Electoral Justice Researcher and Educator Denzel Caldwell. The focus of this work in 2022 was three-pronged:


● To establish a 2022 workshop intervention where Southern organizers were equipped to learn Election Protection, Civics, and Building Post-Election Power via Solidarity Economy prior to Midterm elections

● To gather data from Southern grassroots organizations to determine what Electoral Justice/Community Governance learning needs exist

● To develop and field test an Electoral Justice curriculum developed for a grassroots organization engaged in Electoral Justice Work.

Learn more and connect with this work by contacting Denzel@highlandercenter.org

How Can We Build Democracy in the South — in Electoral Politics and Beyond?

Read the article by Denzel in Truthout, part of a global campaign for International Day of Democracy