LETTER FROM OUR FOUNDER SARAH LUDWIG
These are words I’ve sought to live by. Always speak truth to power. Do not sugar-coat reality or tell people just what they want to hear. Be clear-eyed and direct about the brutal facts and the root causes of suffering and oppression. Do not sit idly by in the face of injustice. Fight for change.
And now, after 28 years of trying to follow and lift up these principles through my work at New Economy Project, I’m leaving the organization. It’s been an amazing run, and I am entering the next chapter of my life ready to reflect on the past three decades and find new ways to take action.
I am thrilled to share that Deyanira Del Rio, my longtime co-director and colleague, will assume the role of sole executive director, starting in January. Dey’s vision, leadership, and deep understanding of our racial justice mission assure me that New Economy Project will keep doing amazing work, and then some. She is an exceptional advocate and effective organizer, with unparalleled expertise in our field to boot. Simply put, she is a force, and I look forward to seeing all she continues to accomplish.
We are firm believers in shared leadership at New Economy Project, and over the years we have built a formidable leadership team. Our legal director Susan Shin and associate director Andy Morrison have worked hand-in-hand with Dey and me to run programs, supervise staff, and plan strategy. I owe them all so much and know they will carry the work forward with smarts and the utmost integrity and purpose.
And our bang-up team of coalition organizers, legal advocates, and communications and operations staff share an unwavering commitment to movement building and to making a real difference in New Yorkers’ lives and NYC communities. Our core campaigns to build a solidarity economy—the culmination of decades of learning and hard work—are all going strong. It’s a good time to say goodbye, knowing the organization is on such solid footing.
My decision to leave New Economy Project is of course bittersweet. But my heart is filled with gratitude and immense pride in all we have achieved together. A special shout-out to our many wonderful board members, staff, interns, and supporters—both past and present. You’ve all played such a vital role in redefining what’s possible and fighting for the world we want to see.
Although December 31 will be my last day on staff, I will continue to champion New Economy Project and hope you will join me in showing generous support. Please look out for an email from our board of directors in the coming days. We are all so excited for what’s in store for New Economy Project. Thank you for being part of our community.
LETTER FROM OUR BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Please join us in expressing deep gratitude and best wishes to Sarah Ludwig, New Economy Project’s brilliant and fierce founder and co-director, who recently shared with you her news that she is leaving the organization after 28 years.
Since she founded New Economy Project in 1995, Sarah’s visionary leadership, unwavering commitment to systems change, and tireless efforts have shaped one of the most effective economic justice organizations in the city. Under Sarah’s leadership, New Economy Project has taken on powerful Wall Street interests, forged lasting coalitions and deep collaboration with grassroots groups throughout the city and state, and worked with thousands of New Yorkers to speak out and vindicate their rights – always centering racial justice and neighborhood equity.
Sarah has launched dozens of economic justice initiatives and inspired others to join the fight. And she has mentored countless staff and interns along the way. Her bold approach and strategic insight have helped shape a movement and better the lives of the people and communities we serve. We thank Sarah for always speaking truth to power. She leaves the organization in an exceptionally strong position, with an experienced, committed, and talented leadership team and staff.
Please join us in recognizing Sarah’s decades of groundbreaking work by making a donation to New Economy Project in her honor.
As we bid farewell to a remarkable leader, we are thrilled to announce that New Economy Project’s co-director Deyanira Del Rio will be assuming the role of sole executive director starting in January. Dey, an extraordinary and longtime leader in the field, needs no introduction. She has been instrumental in shaping our work at New Economy Project and will build on the strong initiatives that she and Sarah have created – in deep collaboration with hundreds of groups around New York City and State – to address structural racism and other systemic inequities in our economy.
Under Dey’s leadership, the organization will continue to achieve its ambitious goals: building out our solidarity economy loan fund, scaling up statewide organizing for economic democracy, winning a public bank for New York City, and more. This is indeed an invigorating moment for the organization.
Please join us in extending our congratulations and ongoing support to Dey and the rest of the New Economy Project team. We are eager to embark on this new chapter and thank you for your invaluable support.
New Economy Project Board of Directors
Azadeh Khalili, President
Akilah Browne, Treasurer
Jennifer Ching, Vice President
Brendan Martin, Secretary