To read in Spanish about Antonio's Community Supported Organizer work, click here.
“I have lived an incredible life that has stemmed from street life. Help me in my journey to fight systemic poverty and climate change, activate young people, research and explore other worlds, stand up for peace and justice and report on what’s happening from the front lines.”
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Antonio Zamora is a well-respected Chicano activist/organizer who resides and was born in Portland, Oregon, where he has been integrally involved in a number of struggles—from the Occupy Movement to climate and food justice and fossil fuel resistance.
He has a blogtalk radio podcast, "Revolution is 24/7" where he talks about his CSO work, grassroots resistance against fossil fuel projects, colonialism, racism and interviews with change agents around the world.
Antonio’s involvement in struggles for social and environmental justice dates back to growing up as a street kid from a migrant working family. Antonio’s global insights into the long legacy of colonialism--including climate change, racism and poverty-- were honed as a young adult when he struck out on the road.
Antonio traveled all the way from New Mexico to Venezuela—hitchhiking, walking over mountains, crossing highways on foot, and taking buses and boats—to build earthships with the Chavista people, a project to which he remains committed. He lived afterwards with a Hare Krishna community in Colombia, where he developed a commitment to spiritual activism in service of global restorative justice.
Out of street life, Antonio recognized the Occupy Movement as a viable force to secure economic justice against the Wall Street political machine. He lived in the Portland Occupy camp for 30 days, under the constant threat of police terror, while he protested and supported the camp with lighting, cleaning and building from the Engineers tent. Through Occupy Wall Street, he built skills as an agent of change and connected to a variety of struggles in the grassroots community of the world.
In summer of 2015, he was on site in the ports of Seattle, Bainbridge, Port of Townsend, Everett and Portland to help “shut down Shell’s evil plan.” He and six other courageous kayakers halted the Polar Pioneer and moved it aground for several hours just off Bainbridge Island. In Portland, along with other Kayaktivists from around the Northwest region, he put his body directly on the line again--getting arrested twice-- to block Shell’s Fennica ice breaker from exiting the Port, Later, these actions were acknowledged as instrumental in halting Shell Oil's reckless plan to drill in the Arctic.
After helping to "shut down Shell’s evil plan,” Antonio joined thousands of other activists in the streets of Paris-- just after the wake of a terrorist attack—to demand world leaders stand with integrity and uphold the rights of the seven generations to climate justice and a livable planet.
Over the years, Antonio has collaborated with and provided support on a host of campaigns and actions from building Earthships, Occupy Wall Street, The Anti-Nato Summit of 2012, Ayotzinapa, Black Lives Matter, Shell No, The Paris Climate Agreements, Standing Rock and many grassroots mobilization efforts in Portland. When the rise of Black Lives Matter came about in Portland, Antonio helped facilitate one of the very first rallies at Dawson Park which gave birth to Don’t Shoot Portland. During Shell No Portland, he rallied his community at Shell Gas stations to keep attention on “Shells evil plan.” Whenever there are marches and rallies, Antonio offers his street smarts as a security presence. He provides his police liaison skills and encourages collaboration by facilitating needed dialogues at large political manifestations and actions.
Antonio is a certified First Aid Responder, able to serve at activist camps resisting fossil fuel projects. Contact him to learn more.
BACKBONE Community Supported Organizer Carlo Voli has said “Antonio was a Kayativist hero during the Shell No battle on the Willamette River to prevent the Fennica from leaving Portland. Every time he was taken by the Coast Guard, he reappeared courageously and victoriously in his kayak, energizing and recharging our spirits.”
Dr. Kathryn Kendall has known Antonio since 2011 when she was part of the Media team for Occupy Portland and was impressed by his resourcefulness. When Antonio asked her to teach meditation to activists, she enlisted the support of Buddhist Peace Fellowship of Portland, and she writes, “Antonio is a man of vision and enthusiasm. He is of the people and for the people. His fire, his commitment, and his delight in activism gives hope and energy to others. He brings joyfulness and optimism to groups that can easily become grim and argumentative. He resolves problems with dance, with laughter, and with wisdom.”
Professor Desiree Hellegers, a founding co-director of the Collective for Social and Environmental Justice at Washington State University Vancouver, and author of the book "No Room of Her Own: Women’s Stories of Homelessness, Life Death and Resistance." Hellegers has followed Antonio’s organizing work since 2015, and Antonio is a researcher/videographer on a documentary project she is coordinating on fossil fuel resistance in the Pacific Northwest, says,
“Antonio lives and breathes the fight for social and environmental justice. He’s a rare organizer. Enormously energetic, kind and reflective, he brings a wealth of knowledge and insights drawn from lived experiences of homelessness/poverty, migrant labor, and racism, and from participating in movement struggles from Occupy and Standing Rock."
Housing For All campaign member Carol Isaac says, “The Little Prince is a resistance fighter.”
Antonio received a Commemoration for Positive Leadership from Portland Youth Builders, testimony to his peer's recognition of his leadership skills and his contributions as a Builder of Earthships for people.
Statement from Antonio Zamora:
After years of surviving street life, witnessing positive social change, exploring other worlds and gaining critical experiences out on the front lines, I have several objectives with my community supported organizing:
2) Help organize a people’s city movement
3) Offer know your rights and political history classes, as well as non violent direct action trainings
4) Continue to show up and support movements against imperialism, colonialism, racism and climate change
5) Build a tool library for trainings and grassroots mobilization with T.A.C.O.
6) Promote Chicano culture and studies
These objectives are to help grassroots efforts to be stronger, inspire young people to get active, change lives, train people to be agents of positive change, attend campaign meetings and build another world alongside other change makers for future generations to come.
This is the life I have been living, and I will see it through!
In addition to organizing, I make efforts to learn about my privilege as a cis Chicano man in a patriarchal society. It’s important to learn about this so I may know how to show up for my sisters and siblings who do not have the privileges I have as a male, and who suffer in ways I can never know. I urge all cis gender males, particularly Chicano males, to show up with me in this journey.
Shut down the 1%! Respect the Sacred! Climate Justice now!
Hope is abundant and resistance is everywhere!
Direct Action! Direct Action! Direct Action!
Another world is possible!
Si se puede!
-- Antonio Zamora