Rooted in the spirit of unconditional nonviolence, the Rocky Mountain Peace and Justice Center is dedicated to radically progressive personal and social change. We are a multi-issue organization that works to restore and protect Earth and human rights. We educate, organize, act and build community in order to create a culture of justice and peace.
With the ever-changing political situation, rise of devastating natural disasters, and injustices continually placed on marginalized groups, our work is very relevant and as needed now as it was in 1983. The support of the community has been exceptional, and we need you now more than ever to volunteer and to donate. Your contributions allow us to continue the work of our mission and remain a consistent presence of peace and nonviolent action in the community!
by LeRoy Moore, Ph.D
In October 1983, at just the time of the encirclement of the Rocky Flats Nuclear Weapons plant by about 17,000 people, six individuals, three men and three women, who knew each other through their Rocky Flats activism, founded the Rocky Mountain Peace and Justice Center. The new organization responded to the oft-expressed need for an enduring center for social change activity in Boulder.
Originally called the Boulder Peace Center, the name was soon changed to Rocky Mountain Peace Center because the founders envisioned a center whose work was regional and not simply local. Years later the name was changed to Rocky Mountain Peace and Justice Center.
Four features that from the first marked what is today the RMPJC are 1) a commitment to nonviolent action in all our endeavors, 2) an intent to be a multi-issue organization (not limited to a single issue, such as Rocky Flats), 3) a determination to use consensus process for making decisions within the organization, and 4) creation of a non-hierarchical internal structure that can serve as a model for the larger society beyond. Commitment to these four practices continues today.
Testimonial from David Wilson, Former Station Manager at KGNU Community Radio
"For the past 30 years, the Rocky Mountain Peace and Justice Center (RMPJC) has provided a vital source of information and activism focused on peace and social justice issues for the Front Range of Colorado and beyond. RMPJC has informed our community about the dangers that the Rocky Flats Nuclear Weapons Plant posed to our community and the world. RMPJC has held the government officials and the private contractors that ran the plant accountable to the public. RMPJC was also instrumental in providing The Citizen's Guide to Rocky Flats along with many other important resources for our community to learn about Rocky Flats.
RMPJC's continued work on Rocky Flats following its shut down has helped us not forget the toxic and radioactive legacy the plant has left, despite the efforts to clean up the site. This has been particularly relevant recently because the historic flooding of September 2013 may have helped further spread the legacy contamination. RMPJC has been a leader in calling attention to this issue, providing critical information and research regarding the ongoing threat that this former nuclear weapons production site poses to our community.
RMPJC has been involved with more than just nuclear weapons issues. They have provided important programs advocating for non-violent solutions to local, national, and international conflicts. All of the ongoing work at RMPJC is essential to community and is worthy of all of our support."
Former Station Manager
KGNU Community Radio
Testimonial from Kayann Short, Ph.D.; Author, Farmer, Teacher, Activist
"Two years ago, when I taught Approaches to Contemporary Issues through Community Service at the University of Colorado, I wanted to help my students--young activists ready to graduate and enter the world as social change agents--understand that the work of peace and justice in a local and global context doesn't end with one project, one war, or one life but is ongoing and collaborative, giving the gift of non-violence from one generation to the next. To see lifelong activism in action, I invited elder community leaders from the Rocky Mountain Peace and Justice Center to work with my students in making first-person videos about a moment that galvanized their life of activism. The stories were remarkable, recounting work in women's rights, non-violent resistance to war, and the global peace movement, becoming a permanent part of our local oral history archive.
But beyond the stories themselves, the process of working with members of the RMPJC left a lasting impression on my students. They understood as they never had before what committing one's life to social and environmental justice could mean for them. This project demonstrates the indelible, multigenerational importance of RMPJC's 28-year presence in our community. RMPJC combines the institutional memory of peace and justice history with the enthusiastic commitment to social change in all its forms. We are lucky to have such an organization in our community, giving young people role models for the ongoing work of peace and justice today."
Kayann Short, Ph.D., taught at the University of Colorado-Boulder for 24 years, where she was awarded for her work combining service with academic learning. She is the co-owner of Stonebridge Farm, the first organic community-supported agricultural farm in Boulder County, where she continues her feminist and environmental activism. Her book, Farmroots: An Ecobiography of Farms Past and Present, is forthcoming by Torrey House Press.
Testimonial from Cathy Comstock, Ph.D., Senior Instructor, Farrand Residential Academic Program, University of Colorado-Boulder
"I consider the Rocky Mountain Peace and Justice Center to be one of the great not-for-profits of our time. By any meaningful standard--effectiveness, efficiency, theoretical understanding and concrete application, unrelenting commitment to the common good--the Rocky Mountain Peace and Justice Center succeeds beyond any reasonable expectation.
One sign of this is their extraordinary cost effectiveness. Their life-saving achievements have been accomplished on a budget so small that it verges on the nonexistent. They are in some ways very like Gene Sharp, the famed theorist of nonviolent strategy, who has operated for years out of a crowded office in his home with almost no resources, yet is widely seen as providing both inspiration and instructional manual for the emergence of the Arab Spring.
In similar manner, LeRoy Moore, one of the mainstays of the RMPJC staff since its beginning, can be credited with that which seemed impossible: the closing of the Rocky Flats nuclear weapons processing plant, a deadly danger to the health of nearby communities for decades. Due to his 28-day fast in front of the governor's office, the governor learned of the many little-known problems and effects of Rocky Flats plutonium processing, from a history of fires and spills, to results of studies by RMPJC of people who lived downwind. Within days of sending his right-hand man to interview LeRoy, the governor wrote the President of the United States that he felt it was necessary to close the facility. Soon after, that is exactly what happened.
That achievement was just one instance of the Center's innumerable and unflagging efforts to make our democracy truly participatory and responsible. The Rocky Mountain Peace and Justice Center is a constant, courageous voice keeping citizens focused on resolving profound problems which affect us all and especially the most vulnerable, issues which we would be very likely to miss otherwise, given the preoccupations of everyday life.
In the mode of the great nonviolent peace activists, the Center operates with relentless persistence to support the common good, no matter the challenges. Their financial base is so small that when the downturn in the economy threatened their existence, the staff volunteered to forego their salary for as long as needed. That situation illustrates both their tremendous commitment to service, and the great need for the expanded funding that participating in Colorado Gives could provide.
I cannot think of a more deserving and valuable organization, one which continually puts compassion into action in the most knowledgeable, dedicated and cost-effective ways. Please give them the chance to continue their crucial service to all, by including them in the Colorado Gives program."
Cathy Comstock, Ph.D., has been a teacher and administrator at the University of Colorado-Boulder for more than 25 years. Her service-learning classes, whose students have often volunteered at the Peace Center, have won an array of awards, including the first national Service-Learning in Higher Education Award from Campus Compact. If you would like further elucidation, please feel free to contact her at Cathy.Comstock@colorado.edu or 303-449-1006.
Endorsement from Chet Tchozewski, Executive Director, Global Greengrants Fund and Co-Founder of Rocky Mountain Peace & Justice Center
"Since co-founding the Rocky Mountain Peace & Justice Center in 1983 I have had the responsibility and privilege to get to know almost 10,000 similar grassroots community organizations in over 100 countries around the world in my role as founder of the Global Greengrants Fund, a leading funder of social and environmental activism globally, and few of them measure up to the clarity of purpose, the robust self-organized organizational network, the perseverance that have been combined with humility and fierce resolve to make the RMPJC one of the premier social change organizations in the region, the country and the world.
As Martin Luther King said, "The arch of the moral university is long, but it bends toward justice." The arch has been bent more quickly and directly by thirty one years of persistent gentle pressure applied by the dedicated folks at the Rocky Mountain Peace & Justice Center. "
Testimonial from Jean Gore, Activist
"The Rocky Mountain Peace and Justice Center plays a critical role in Boulder for peace and social justice. Its dedicated staff, mostly volunteer, continues to organize opposition to the wars in Iraq, Afghanistan and against instigating a new war with Iran. They frequently collaborate with other groups and individuals in doing so. They have been a key player in exposing the dangers of nuclear contamination from Rocky Flats, currently alerting Colorado to the still existing contamination. RMPJC has been the conscience of our community for nearly thirty years.
A lifelong activist, Jean helped start a branch of Women's International League for Peace and Freedom in Boulder during the sixties with a group of women campaigning against the war in Vietnam. She served as national president of WILPF 1993-96. Jean, with others, organized a Reading to End Racism program which continues to visit schools in Boulder. She has been involved with a number of candidates for election -- candidates who make a difference."
Testimonial from Will Toor, Former County Commissioner
"I have served as a local elected official in Boulder County for the last 15 years, first as mayor of Boulder and more recently as county commissioner. During this time, I have had the opportunity to see the impact that the Rocky Mountain Peace and Justice Center has had in our community. They have been a consistent, active voice in the debate about appropriate cleanup and land uses in the vicinity of the decommissioned Rocky Flats nuclear weapons plant; an important voice for peace and against war from the days of illegal US intervention in Central America in the 1980s to the recent conflicts in the Middle East; and they have been tireless advocates for the interests of poor and working peoples.
While I have occasionally found myself on the other side of an issue, I have been consistently impressed with their passion and dedication to environmental protection, peace, and social justice. Our community would be well served by more opportunities for giving to RMPJC."
A photo and bio of Will are available on the Boulder County website: http://www.bouldercounty.org/gov/officials/pages/toor.aspx
Testimonial of Sam Fuqua, Interim Executive Director, Pop Culture Classroom
"My family supports the Rocky Mountain Peace and Justice Center because we believe a better world is possible.
RMPJC helps make it possible through their tireless activism on a wide range of issues that are local and global. For example, their vigilance on Rocky Flats and its' toxic legacy. This former plutonium warhead factory is in our backyard and is emblematic of the long term global consequences of nuclear weapons. Without RMPJC's continued work, it would be easy for this critical issue to fade from public consciousness here in Metro Denver.
We also appreciate that RMPJC runs on a tight budget, stretching every dollar as far as it can be stretched! We feel a direct connection between our donation and their work for positive social change."
Sam Fuqua has lived in Boulder for over 20 years. He is Interim Executive Director of Pop Culture Classroom and a member of the Boulder Valley Board of Education (affiliations provided for identification purposes only).