Dana Pedersen

Dana is based in the Pioneer Valley of western Massachusetts, originally the land of the Mohican and Pocumtuc indigenous peoples. Over the course of her life, she has utilized her skills and talents as a college Public Speaking instructor, a nonprofit community educator, and a consultant in the technology sector.

Her political awakening began as a young adult participating  in living wage campaigns on her college campus in western Wisconsin. Since then, she has been on a trajectory of radical systemic analysis, critique, and imagination. In 2015, she joined the staff of Cooperation Texas to help develop worker-owned cooperatives in Austin, Texas and, through this work, formed ligaments with others in the solidarity economy movement. Her political work has focused on promoting economic democracy and Black self-determination in the South and consciousness-raising with fellow tech workers within traditional, capitalist corporations. Dana holds a Bachelor’s degree in Sociology and Master’s degree in Communication Studies. This education has produced particular interest in how discourses help create reality and the importance of developing frames and narratives that liberate.

Dana’s deepest callings are to heal communities through creative expression and transform conditions by facilitating critical turning points for others. She excavates her own experiences as a queer, Black, Caribbean American woman with roots in the Deep South to understand power and oppression more broadly and discover collective resources for change. Dana’s other interests include dancing Cuban salsa, playing guitar, writing poetry, and stitching handmade journals!