Jerry Koch-Gonzalez is one of the most devoted and active teachers and trainers of sociocracy today. The breadth and degree of his enthusiasm and commitment are masked by his quiet and unassuming manner. At the cohousing conference in 2015, I was almost an hour late for my presentation because I had remembered the wrong time. When I arrived everyone was intently focused on the other end of the room. I couldn’t even get their attention when I started introducing myself and apologizing.
Jerry had jumped in for me, pulled out his charts from somewhere, and started giving an introduction to sociocracy. Then he was taking questions. People were mesmerized. Anytime, anywhere, Jerry will give a basic explanation and answer questions.
Jerry has a new program, Sociocracy Leadership Training (SoLT)that will be taught online. The first cycle starts September 9th and extends through November. More information below.
A New Venture: Sociocracy for All (Sofa)
Jerry’s new venture is Sociocracy for All (Sofa). He is the project director and the core volunteer. The purpose is to spread sociocracy. Jerry has taught sociocracy for a long time is part of several sociocratic organizations. But it is practice that shows the beauty of sociocracy. One can teach and explain but really it is the doing that excites people.
Sociocracy For All was created to help organizations that cannot afford to hire consultants. SoFA helps these organizations find support for learning and implementing Sociocracy.
Sociocracy For All raises funds to support the development of educational materials that can be freely distributed and to subsidize the cost of consultants. Organizations that can pay the full cost of implementing Sociocracy are referred to The Sociocracy Consulting Group (of which Jerry Koch-Gonzalez is the CEO).
Sociocracy For All is a volunteer organization sponsored by the Institute for Peaceable Communities, Inc. For delivery of services beyond the capacity of volunteers, we contract out work to independent consultants. Eventually we may have paid staff.
Sociocracy Leadership Program (SoLT) starts September 9. It will be taught online using Zoom and in the English language.
It is a 12-week sociocracy immersion learning program, done remotely and by doing sociocracy in a pop-up organization that we are setting up for people. Anyone anywhere in the world who can make the commitment and speaks English can apply. This is an innovative way of teaching governance, and I hope we can spread learning quickly and effectively. We noticed that we can talk and talk about sociocracy and people are convinced that sociocracy sounds good, but they don’t understand it until they actually make decisions by consent. We want to give people that experience. SoLT is the best way we can think of to give affordable, practical access to this experience to people, and through the SoLT project they can even contribute to the spread of sociocracy!
Jerry will also be teaching a full-day sociocracy workshop in Brooklyn on two dates: September 17 and 18, 2016. These are sponsored by the Brooklyn Society for Ethical Culture in Brooklyn, New York.
A 90-minute introduction Sociocracy: the Operating System of the New Economy will be hosted by the Social Enterprise Greenhouse in Providence RI on September 26, 2016 at 5:30pm.
More information and registration for these workshops, see https://www.sociocracyforall.org/workshops/
There are a number of Jerry’s videos about sociocracy on YouTube. You can subscribe to his channel to be notified of future videos.
SoFA is planning events in Boston, NH, CT, OH and PA for late fall and winter right now. If you are interested in hearing about them, sign up for the Sofa mailing list.
SoFA is also posting recent webinar recordings such as a sociocracy introduction for the Vermont Employee Ownership Center and one on facilitation decision-making. These and other free videos and printable resources are available here http://www.sociocracyforall.org/resources/
While others like John Buck have more experience in government agencies, institutions, and businesses, and Diana Leafe Christian with intentional communities, Jerry has a long history with social and economic change beginning as a trainer with The Movement for a New Society in the 1970s. A list of his affiliations reveals his long-term interest in practical social reform.
He has been a Board member of the Institute for Community Economics , United for a Fair Economy and Class Action, and a trainer with the National Coalition Building Institute, DiversityWorks, Cambridge Youth Peace & Justice Corps, Lesley College Center for Peaceable Schools, Boston College Center for Social Justice, the Association for Resident Controlled Housing, and Spirit in Action. His commitment has out lived many of these organizations.
Jerry is currently the CEO of The Sociocracy Consulting Group (itself a limited liability company run on sociocratic principles). Jerry is a founding and current resident of Pioneer Valley Cohousing, a 21-year old community in Amherst MA that has been successfully using Sociocracy for more than four years.