Greg’s 60th Birthday Conference and Extravaganza

Friends and colleagues,

 Every 10 years I hold a birthday party for myself as a fundraiser. 9 years out of 10 i do not even have a birthday party, preferring to go to the beach with my wife Kathy.  In 2013 I will be 60 years old, and therefore it is time to party and raise money for a good cause.  I want you to come to my party on Saturday October 12 2013.  And i want you to help me raise enough money to hold a wildly fun Birthday Conference and Extravaganza and raise money for the Environmental Justice League of Rhode Island and Groundwork Providence.  These are two organizations I am proud to be associated with, and have longstanding and ongoing ties to. Their websites are    The EJ League will receive the money with the understanding that 25% percentage of the net will be shared with Groundwork Providence.
If you have read this far you are likely at least a bit familiar that I believe that ecological healing and economic justice are critical to the long term economic future of my community, Rhode Island, and everywhere else on the planet.  We need a new framing of the economic discussion if we want prosperity in our communities. The new framing has ecology, justice, and community health at its heart, as well an acceptance that the economy in the west shall get smaller.  And it is in the smart shrinkage of the economy that we shall find prosperity for our communities.  As you can imagine, that perspective is not the received wisdom in many of the places where economic development strategy and practice happen.   But I am betting that most of you who are reading this are having to contemplate this more and more often as the recession becomes permanent and New England has been hit with powerful storms 3 years in a row.
What better way to celebrate my birthday and raise money for work on environmental and economic justice than to hold a public conversation about new directions for the economy.  I am a policy junkie after all. I even get to give a talk, and most of you know how much i like to talk about ecological healing, ecological economics, using less, sharing more, environmental and economic justice, peace, and prosperity. With your support I can bring in a few excellent speakers (send me a list of your favorites) and recruit speakers doing great work right in the neighborhood, and we can create an incredibly interesting and influential place of conversation that gets the ruling elite more ready to do the right thing.
Yes, I know, some of you reading this are among the 1% and the policy professionals who do work within the dominant paradigm.  I have even had the pleasure of working some of you, primarily because you too know something is rotten in economic development in RI. We might disagree on emphasis,  but if you are receiving this, you know that the ecological healing and economic justice need to be in the conversation on economic development in Rhode Island.    Help me get key issues in front of the public and to do a bit of nudging to get Rhode Island, and maybe your community, on a better and more resilient track.  Then join the party with food, music and dancing ( i am already starting to pick out the play list), and wild conversation about the state of the world.
If you want a recent essay on the type of economics I think makes sense you can check out my blog   and this essay that I wrote on the occasion of the collapse of 38 Studios and the RI inside politics old school economic development model    If you are coming, we can fill out a lineup with speakers to expand our minds.
Here is the deal.
I need to know how many people are coming so I can get a room the right size and figure out who to get to speak.
The conference  Ecological Healing, Ecological Economics, Economic Justice:  Creating prosperity for the 99% in Rhode Island. 
Begins at 10 AM on Saturday October 12, 2013.  Location TBA  Conference ends at 5PM.  Cost  $35.00 including lunch.
Same location  5:30 PM  Birthday party dinner, music dancing, lots of conversation.  Cost  $35.00
Sweet deal.  Both for $50.
You can send in your money now. In fact i really want you to send in your money now.  Details at the end.
But while I have your attention, an even better offer.
Lots of you reading this missive only know me casually or via on line worlds.  I hope you really want to come, learn, enjoy, and contribute to the Environmental Justice League of RI.  Many of you reading this letter know me much more closely.   For my close relatives, friends and colleagues, I want a bit more from you.  I want you to give at least enough money to get your name into the program under the heading of
I am standing with Greg and supporting Environmental and Economic Justice and Ecological Healing in Rhode island
Your name here.

To get in this section takes at least $100 per person.  Those of you who can afford it, please donate at this level, or more.  Those in the corporate world, the EJLRI is a 501c3, EIN 80-0165934

and we can work out what kind of logo or other acknowledgement to put in the program for sponsorships.
Those who can not come, please donate something to support environmental and economic justice in my community .
An even crazier offer.
I have asked all of you to suggest speakers.  I need a keynoter and then we shall have 3 panels
1. Ecological healing and economics
2. Economic justice and prosperity
3. Creating prosperity in Rhode island
I am also looking for 2 shorter interludes, and in the shameless commerce division at it was decided that two 20 minute spots could be auctioned off with bids being taken for any type of 20 minute talk, art show, video (or a slot on a panel) that the winning 2 bidders wish to offer up, as long as they do not use bad words and they are relevant to the topic at hand.  Humor is highly encouraged.
The winning bids will be picked based on a combination of vision, price, and negotiation.
If you want a slot, send in an RFP including your bid.   I look forward to the negotiations.
If you got this and can not afford to come but want to come to learn and or celebrate:  COME
The point of sponsors and crazy fund raising is to channel resources into the community.  It is pay what is appropriate for you.  As one of my friends says “Pay until it feels good”  
For many of us there are family members who really do not want to spend time at a conference on creating prosperity. If anyone under the age of 14 wants to come we can discuss it.  High School students might find it very interesting and if anyone has a crew who would be interested lets talk soon.   But the party in the evening will most definitely be kid friendly, and it would be great for families to join us in the evening.

So that I can keep track of what is going on, and do a better job of budgeting and building the registration list for the conference and dinner, RSVP electronically filling in the little form below.  You can donate either electronically to the Environmental Justice League of Rhode Island   ( named after the comic book heroes) at     using google checks.

Or you can send checks made out to Environmental Justice League of Rhode island (EJLRI is fine)  and mail them to me.   I am looking forward to receiving many cards letters, and notes (and checks)  from my friends and colleagues,  and seeing almost all of you in October.
Greg Gerritt   37 6th St  Providence RI 02906
Email address
I will attend      the conference_____   The party immediately following_______     Both_________
I have enclosed or donated electronically    $35__    $50___ $100___     Other____  Even more_______
I NEED MORE INFORMATION BEFORE DONATING or deciding if I will attend ______________
I want to stand with Greg on his birthday for environmental and economic justice (program listing)  ______
If this is registration for more than 1 person  please list all people covered and the events they will attend

Please mail checks made out to the Environmental Justice League of Rhode Island (EJLRI)

TO:  Greg Gerritt   37  6th St  Providence RI  02906

Donate to the EJLRI electronically  at     using google checks while emailing your rsvp


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