2019 Past Events...

We organize a free public forum, generally monthly. Join us to listen and discuss current issues with our knowledgeable speakers.

See our next event here.

To see videos of past forums:

Check out our YouTube channel.

Wednesday, October 9, 2019

Rock County Progressives Present an Educational Forum



Talk Radio’s Role






  • Mike Crute
    of Devils Advocate’s Radio


    • “Mike Crute is the co-host of the Devil’s Advocates Radio Show, airing in Madison from February 2012 until the day Donald Trump was elected President in November 2016. When Madison lost it’s Progressive Talk formatted station, Crute immediately began pursuing options to buy his own radio station, putting Resistance Radio, WRRD-1510 AM Waukesha and Milwaukee on the air in February 2017. Crute won Milwaukee’s Favorite Local Entrepreneur-Shepard Express for 2017. Crute expanded the Devil’s Advocates Radio Network to include WTTN-1580 AM Columbus, WI, in March of 2018.

    • The Devil's Advocate website”

    • In May of 2019, Crute returned Progressive Talk to Madison when TALK 92.7 FM went on the air as a brand new station..

    • Since the 2018 mid-terms, the Devil’s Advocates have covered and broadcast, Joe Biden, Elizabeth Warren, Cory Booker, three Bernie Sanders rallies, Presidential Debates coverage from Miami, Detroit, Houston, and the Devil’s Advocates will attend and broadcast in October from the Democratic Debate in Ohio, October 15th.

    • The Devil’s Advocates air weekdays 3-6 pm, locally in Madison, Columbus, and Milwaukee. The Devil’s Advocates also play weekdays in Minneapolis, Eureka, CA, and Charlottesville, VA.”


Forum Schedule:

6 PM-6:30 PM doors open with cheese & cracker reception (nonalcoholic)
6:30 PM-7:45 PM, Speaker presentation



*Community Room
1711 Lodge Dr.
Janesville, WI 53545

*This is an independent event not affiliated with Basics.

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Rock County Progressives Present an Educational Forum




as the


of the

Political Universe



  • Ruth Conniff
    • Editor in Chief of the Wisconsin Examiner

    • The Wisconsin Examiner”

    • “The Wisconsin Examiner is a nonpartisan, nonprofit news site offering a fresh perspective on politics and policy in our state. As the largest news bureau covering state government, the Examiner will offer investigative reporting and daily coverage dedicated to the public interest.

    • “Ruth Conniff is Editor-in-chief of the Wisconsin Examiner. She formerly served as Editor-in-chief of The Progressive Magazine, and opened the Progressive’s office in Washington, DC, during the Clinton Administration, where she made her debut as a political pundit on CNN’s Capital Gang Sunday and Fox News. She moved to Oaxaca, Mexico, for a year in 2017, where she covered U.S./Mexico relations, the migrant caravan, and Mexico’s efforts to grapple with Donald Trump.”

    • "Conniff is a frequent guest on All In with Chris Hayes on MSNBC and has appeared on Good Morning America, Democracy Now!, Wisconsin Public Radio, and other radio and television programs.

    • "In 2011, she did award-winning coverage of the uprising against Governor Scott Walker in Wisconsin. She has also written for The Nation, The New York Times, The Washington Post, and The Los Angeles Times, among other publications.

    • "Conniff graduated from Yale University in 1990, where she ran track and edited the campus magazine The New Journal."


Wednesday, Aug. 14,2019

Rock County Progressives Invite You to

Our Annual:


Pot Luck Picinic

Soda and Brats Provided!





Progressive Values




Spencer Black




  • Chuck Ogg
    • Guess that quote
    • Introduction of guest speaker
  • Spencer Black
    • Spencer is currently the Vice President of the national Sierra Club.
    • He is also a columnist for The Capital Times newspaper.
    • He represented the 77th Assembly District in the Wisconsin State Assembly from 1985 until 2011. He was Chair of the Assembly Natural Resources Committee and elected Assembly Minority Leader and Assistant Minority Leader.
    • He authored environmental laws including the Knowles-Nelson Stewardship Fund, the Mining Moratorium law, the Lower Wisconsin Riverway, the statewide recycling program, and the endangered species matching grant program
    • He has two graduate degrees: Masters of Science in Urban and Regional Planning and a Masters of Arts in Public Policy and Administration from UW. He was a high school teacher and coach, Curator of Education of the Wisconsin Historical Society



  • Earth Celibration
    • Holly Denning will offer a short water ceremony celebrating the Earth by the river.
  • 6-7 PM Potluck Picinic and Music
    • Brats, natural & veggie provided
    • Natural soda provided
  • 7-8:30 PM Speakers


Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Rock County Progressives Present an Educational Forum





Clean-Energy Economy

could bring to




  • Rep. Greta Neubauer
    • With the summer heat rising, we are reminded that global warming means relying on alternative energy sources to lessen the amount of carbon in the air.

    • Rep. Greta Neubauer will speak on how a clean-energy economy would also bring new opportunities to Wisconsin.

    • Rep. Neubauer's legislation

    • Rep. Neubauer's website


Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Rock County Progressives Present an Educational Forum





Rock County



  • Marc Perry of Community Action
    • The debate over a proposed Janesville ordinance change to allow homeless overnight parking at Palmer Park has drawn attention to the ongoing problem of homelessness in Janesville and cities throughout the state. We are are excited to have Marc Perry speak on how to help the homeless and the wider community

    • Marc Perry is Director of Planning and Development for Community Action Inc., of Rock and Walworth Counties where he oversees the agency’s adult preparation programs, Merrill Community Center and fund development initiatives.

    • Marc Perry has more than 20 years’ experience working with youth and adults from diverse backgrounds, and is well-known as an advocate for the homeless population in Rock County. He currently serves as the Director of Planning and Development for Community Action Inc., of Rock and Walworth Counties where he oversees the agency’s adult preparation programs, Merrill Community Center and fund development initiatives. Marc also conducts cultural equity training for a variety of organizations. In 2018, he planned to train 1,000 local professionals on workplace diversity and inclusion. He tripled that, training more than 3,000 people--including every single Rock County government employee! You might also have seen his face on billboards around town as he served as a campaign champion for the most recent United Way Blackhawk Region campaign.

    • From Janesville Gazzette; “Other Views: Facing the reality of homelessness”

    • Marc Percy on local radio station WCLO


Wednesday, May 8, 2019

Rock County Progressives Present an Educational Forum



Climate Change

and the

Green New Deal




Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Rock County Progressives Present an Educational Forum



From Badgercare


Medicare for All:

Achieving Universal Health Care



  • Kevin Kane
    • From Citizen Action.

    • Kevin Kane, Director, Organizing Co-op Incubator (B.A. Marquette University, M.S.A.E., Marquette University). Kevin joined Citizen Action in 2011 as the Healthcare Organizer and was awarded the "Advocate of the Year" in 2012 by HealthWatch Wisconsin and the 2017 "Community Healthcare Champion of the Year" award by the Wisconsin Federation of Nurses & Health Professionals. In 2014, Kevin spearheaded the largest concurrent grassroots referendum campaign in Wisconsin history on Medicaid/BadgerCare, with over 1 million Wisconsinites voting, showing super-majority support. He authored reports on health care and economic policy issues. He was a founding board member of the Common Ground Healthcare Cooperative which provides affordable health coverage to over 50,000 members. He grew up in Palatine, IL, and has lived his entire adult life in Milwaukee.
  • Erin Evans
    • Visiting Assistant Professor at Beloit College

    • Erin Evans earned her B.A. in English Literature and Psychology (2003) and her M.A. in Political Science (2008) at San Francisco State University, and her Ph.D. in Sociology at University of California-Irvine in 2016. Her teaching and research program is anchored to her background as a grassroots activist and labor union educator.


Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Rock County Progressives Present an Educational Forum



White Privilege



  • Lonnie Brigham Jr.
    • Lonnie Brigham Jr. is the Chairman of the Janesville Police Department African American Liaison Advisory Committee.

    • Lonnie Brigham Jr, 53 years old, has resided in Janesville for the last 19 years.

    • "I have a passion and a need to help others, more specifically in the areas of racial inequality and injustices."

    • "Being born in Chicago and being raised by the streets of Chicago, I lived the racial inequality and injustices everyday. My life experience has lead me to my current passion as a community activist, following in the footsteps of my ancestors."


Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Rock County Progressives Present an Educational Forum



A Wilderness Icon:

Utah’s Red Rock





  • Clayton Daughenbaugh
    • Clayton is the Midwest Conservation Organizer with the Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance

    • “America’s wild public lands are a proud part of the national heritage. Sadly, they are under attack with those in Utah at the center of the controversy. President Trump has initiated what would be the largest rollback of conservation protections in our country’s history. He is seeking to repeal and replace the Bears Ears and Grand Staircase Escalante National Monuments and reverse the steady progress towards protecting the largest unprotected wilderness area in the lower 48 states.”

    • Clayton will show a short movie dramatically documenting citizen efforts to conserve public lands in southern Utah's spectacular canyon country. He will update what was gained and lost in the last Congress and the prospects for the new Congress.

    • “These public lands are among the most beautiful and most intact portions of Creation remaining. Wild places that include the largest concentration of Native American archeological sites in U.S. We have a great responsibility to act to protect these special places.”

    • Clayton has been a conservation organizer with the Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance for 12 years. As a volunteer he is Chair of the Sierra Club’s National Wildlands and Wilderness Team and a past Sierra Club Vice-President of its’ Grassroots Network. He was a community organizer in Chicago for twenty years and lives in Berwyn, IL.


Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Rock County Progressives Present an Educational Forum




"Reuctant Radical"

A film about

Anti-pipeline activist

Ken Ward,



Film starts 6 PM sharp.
Doors open at 5:45.
Short discussion untill 7:50.

  • Intro:
    • With global warming an existential threat to civilization, if not humanity, what should we do?
    • Martin Luther King chose civil disobedience in the face of intransigent racism.
    • Gandhi chose nonviolent resistance facing British Imperialists.
    • Ken Ward challenges himself and us to do similar in the face of global climate disaster, captured in the documentary film, “Reluctant Radical.”
    • www.collectiveeye.org/products/the-reluctant-radical and Founder of 350.org.
    • “The Reluctant Radical is an intimate portrait of climate activist Ken Ward. This documentary film follows Ken through a series of civil disobedience direct actions, culminating with his participation in the coordinated action that shut down all the U.S. tar sands oil pipelines on October 11, 2016. Facing 20 years in prison for his action, the film reveals both the personal costs as well as the fulfillment that comes from following one’s moral calling.
    • “There are many fronts in the vast climate fight. This film highlights the personal struggles and victories of one daring path.” - Bill McKibben, Climate Advocate and Founder of 350.org.
    • “He was told he was crazy, but crazy is sitting idly by as disaster for young people is knowingly locked in.” - Dr. James Hansen, Climate Scientist


Calls Us to Action

Jefferson Memorial

You can find these words of
his inside the Memorial.

"I am not an advocate for frequent changes in laws and constitutions, but laws and institutions must go hand in hand with the progress of the human mind. As that becomes more developed, more enlightened, more discoveries are made, new truths discovered and manners and opinions change, with the change of circumstances, institutions must advance also to keep pace with the times. We might as well require a man to wear still the coat which fitted him when a boy, as civilized society to remain even under the regiment of their barbarous ancestors."

         Thomas Jefferson

This mural is located in Beloit, near 500 Pleasent St., on the side of the old Ironworks building facing the Rock River.
It is a great tribute to the laborers of the 20th century.