Taconic Fellows

Ramon Ramirez
Ramon Ramirez, 2019/2020 Distinguished Taconic Fellow

Ramon Ramirez has been a leader in the immigrant rights movement for more than four decades, co-founding and serving as president of Pineros y Campesinos Unidos del Noroeste (PCUN), Oregon’s farm workers’ union and one of the largest Latinx organizations in the state. PCUN, with Ramon as its most recent representative, has been a member of FIRM’s Executive Committee and an active player in the national fight for immigration reform. Ramon’s fellowship will dock with Path to Power’s first pillar: Building Black and Immigrant Power. Drawing from his deep history of coalition building, Ramon’s year-long fellowship project will study, document, and glean lessons from a number of local cross-racial organizing efforts throughout the country and culminate in a multimedia report on his findings.

About the Taconic Fellowship

In June 2012, the Taconic Foundation awarded the Community Change a $3 million legacy grant to launch the Taconic Fellows program, giving space to talented individuals and leaders to innovate, challenge the status quo, and inspire social change.

Since the Taconic Foundation’s generous grant in 2012, Community Change has so far welcomed eight distinguished fellows who worked on critical issues of importance to low-income people, particularly people of color focusing on economic and social justice issues. The Taconic Fellows have shown how immensely valuable this program is to the field and broader movement, providing direct field connection and mutual opportunities for growth and learning. Important new organizing campaigns and organizations have been founded as a result of the time the Taconic Fellowship gave these individuals to innovate and create.

Our vision for the Taconic Fellowship is even more exciting, because it would enable Community Change to build a program that could invest in human capital over the long term. We see the Taconic program engaging promising social justice leaders who are at different points in their trajectory: young people who want to launch a career in the social justice field; accomplished directors or organizers from community-based organizations who may benefit from exposure to work at the national level; and seasoned professionals who bring particular expertise to share with the field.

Past Taconic Fellows:

Haeyoung Yoon (January 2017 – May 2019) – Immigration
Mary Dailey (November 2016 – July 2017) – Economic Justice/Housing/Reinvestment 
Sophia Bracy Harris (December 2015 – December 2016) – Economic Justice/ChildCare 
Charlene Sinclair (February 2015 – February 2016) – Economic Justice/Reinvestment 
Mark Dyen (April 2014 – April 2015) – Economic Justice/Job Creation Team
Phil Radford (May 2014 – May 2015) – Fundraising Models
Justin Ruben (January 2014 – January 2015) – Economic Justice
Pramila Jayapal (September 2013 – September 2014) – Immigration