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Building community, sharing hope, and standing for justice since 2004

Upcoming Events

Please join us for any of these upcoming ESTHER events!

  • To learn more about a particular event, click on its title
  • To see the complete ESTHER calendar, click on More at the bottom left of the listing
Thursday, November 14, 2019 - 3:45pm - 4:30pm Bylaw Revisions Review Meeting First Congregational UCC, 724 E South River St, Appleton Downstairs River Room
Thursday, November 14, 2019 - 4:30pm ESTHER Leadership Board First Congregational UCC, 724 South River Drive, Appleton Downstairs River Room
Monday, November 18, 2019 - 3:00pm ESTHER Communications Committee First Congregational UCC, 724 South River Drive, Appleton Upper Lounge
Tuesday, November 19, 2019 - 6:30pm ESTHER Transit Task Force First United Methodist Church, 325 East Franklin Street, Appleton - Conference Room
Thursday, November 21, 2019 - 10:00am ESTHER Inclusion & Co-creation Committee ESTHER Office, Neenah

Winona LaDuke to Keynote ESTHER’s 2019 Banquet on November 3

Winona LaDuke at Bemidji State UniversityAt ESTHER’s 2019 Banquet on Sunday, November 3, attendees will hear directly from one of today’s most authentic, original, and prolific voices on the subject of climate justice.

The event is currently sold out, and we are building a waiting list. Please contact us at or 920-843-8083 to discuss options.

Winona LaDuke shows us how to connect environmental sustainability and social justice in a unique, exciting and productive way. She explains that the exploitative practices that have degraded our environment have also produced the oppression and poverty of Native Americans and other people of color. Because, our society values short-term profits over other considerations, we ride roughshod over powerless people and over sustainable use of our land. We do this because we adhere to destructive values that endanger our survival. We can end the cycle of environmental degradation and oppression only if we adopt values that stress our relationship to the land, to all created beings and to those who come after us.

Please note that because ticket sales have been exceptionally strong, we have closed online ticket sales at 3:00 pm Central time on Wednesday, October 30.

ESTHER 2019 Banquet

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Sunday, November 3, 2019 - 5:00pm
Liberty Hall, 800 Eisenhower Dr, Kimberly

Ticket Sales Ended October 30 at 3:00 pm Central Time

Winona LaDuke

Due to the high demand for tickets and the limited capacity of our venue, we have closed ticket sales at 3:00 pm Central time on Wednesday, October 30. We have started a waiting list. Please contact us at or 920-843-8083 to discuss options.

We are thrilled to have Winona LaDuke as our keynote speaker this year. She is an internationally acclaimed author, orator, and activist – a dynamic speaker who inspires her audiences to action and engagement.

A graduate of Harvard and Antioch Universities, she has devoted her life to protecting the lands and life-ways of Native communities. In 1994, Time magazine named her one of America’s fifty most promising leaders, and in 1997 LaDuke was named Ms. Magazine Woman of the Year. In 2007, LaDuke was inducted into the National Women’s Hall of Fame. She has authored many books, including All Our Relations, Recovering the Sacred, Food is Medicine and The Militarization of Indian Country.

The banquet will be preceded by a social hour and silent auction. The program will feature musical entertainment and presentation of ESTHER’s 2019 individual and community awards in addition to the keynote.

Justice for Missing or Murdered Tribal Women and Girls

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Tribal members protesting missing and murdered indigenous womenHomicide is the third leading cause of death for Indigenous Women. More than half of Native American women report having been raped or assaulted. The media have largely been silent or, worse, blamed the victims. It is time to shine a light on this atrocity, and come together to work to end it.

Menikanaehkem logoJoin the Women of Menīkānaehkem to call on the Wisconsin legislature to take up LRB 2698/1, which creates a 17-member Wisconsin task force on missing and murdered tribal women and girls. The task force will examine factors that contribute to violence against tribal women and girls and prepare a report on actions that can be taken to eliminate this violence.

Your help is needed now!

This bill has been introduced to the legislature, but it will die unless it is referred to a legislative committee.

  1. Contact Assembly Speaker Robin Vos ( / 608-266-9171) and ask him to assign this bill to the Criminal Justice Committee before the current legislative session ends.
  2. Contact your legislators (find them here) and ask them to communicate their support for this bill to Speaker Vos.

Building a Nation Where “We the People” Truly Means “All the People”

Saturday, October 19, 2019 - 3:00pm - 5:00pm
Lawrence University Warch Campus Center (Somerset Room), 711 E Boldt Way, Appleton

A Presentation by
Mark Charles

Building A Nation Where
“We the People” Truly Means “All the People”

head and shoulders shot of Mark Charles outdoorsMark Charles is a speaker, writer and consultant. The son of an American woman of Dutch heritage and a Navajo man, Charles seeks to understand the complexities of American History regarding race, culture and faith in order to help forge a path of healing and reconciliation for the nation.

Charles is noted for his activism in denouncing the Doctrine of Discovery and opposing the Dakota pipeline. In May of 2019 Charles announced that he is running for President of the United States as an independent in the 2020 election.*

In addition to this event, Mark will be preaching at First Congregational UCC of Appleton on October 20 at the 8:45 and 10:30 am services.

No Charge. All Are Welcome

Learn more:
920-843-8083 – email:


Co-sponsored by Lawrence University’s Office of Spiritual and Religious Life,
Lawrence University Native Association (LUNA), Lawrence Christian Fellowship (LCF), ESTHER and First Congregational UCC of Appleton

*This is a non-political visit and does not constitute an endorsement of his candidacy for the presidential election.

“No Vacancy” – Less Incarceration: Smart Criminal Justice Reform

Monday, October 21, 2019 - 6:00pm - 7:30pm
St. Bernard Catholic Church, 1617 Pine St, Appleton

IssueCover of Rep. Evan Goyke's No Vacancy Plan

Do we build more prisons and/or send people to out-of-state institutions at a high cost to taxpayers, or do we institute reform?

State Rep. Evan Goyke, District 18, Milwaukee, will make the case for criminal justice reform. This can be done in a smart way that will benefit our corrections system, save tax-payer dollars, reduce crime and increase public safety.

Presentation & Panel Discussion on:

Invest in Neighborhoods
Prevent Homelessness
Pay for Crime Reduction Without Raising Taxes
Reduce Prison Admissions
Increase Prison Releases
Increase Success on Supervision

Megan Novak, Legislative Dir., Americans for Prosperity
Bernie Vetrone, Dir., Outagamie Cty. Criminal Justice Treatment Services
Melissa Ludin, Expert Lived Experience & Regional Organizer ACLU Smart Justice
State Rep. Evan Goyke, Milwaukee District 18

Read about Rep. Goyke’s Plan here.

Immigration Task Force Meeting Summary - 9 July 2019

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The ESTHER Immigration Task Force met on Tuesday, July 9. Special guests Primitivo Torrez and Mario Ramirez, from Voces de la Frontera, shared information on an upcoming statewide tour to promote drivers' licenses for all. In this video, four members of the Task Force talk about the support for immigrants that they have found within ESTHER and beyond in the Fox Valley.

Fox Valley Thrives Issues Transportation Focus Group Report

Linking Health and Transportation: Voices of
Oshkosh Walkers, Cyclists and Transit Users

Images from Focus Group ReportThe Fox Valley Thrives Transportation Team conducted a series of focus groups in the spring of 2019 to understand user perceptions of the Oshkosh area’s transportation system. These focus groups allow for better understanding of the connections between transportation and health, identify what facilities enhance or impede a person’s ability to use walking, biking, and transit in the Fox Valley, and determine what changes might need to be made in the built environment to improve access to transportation.

Link to report: Linking Health and Transportation: Voices of Oshkosh Walkers, Cyclists and Transit Users

Fox Valley Thrives, a local chapter of THRIVE WI, is an alliance between East Central WI Regional Planning Commission, ESTHER, and Outagamie and Winnebago County Public Health Departments. Its mission is to advance health equity through aligned efforts, co-learning, and strategic action. The Fox Valley Thrives Transportation Team works to improve health equity and make healthier communities by focusing on the connections between transportation and health.


Prison Reform Task Force Meeting Summary - 1 July 2019

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Lisa Hanneman, chair of ESTHER’s Prison Reform Task Force, shares a brief video report on the Committee’s July 1, 2019, meeting. The August meeting will be held on Monday, August 5, at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church, 140 S. Green Bay Road, Neenah.

ESTHER Joins in Demonstration Opposing ICE Detention Camps

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On Monday, June 24, nearly a thousand people, including members of ESTHER, participated in a demonstration at the Milwaukee ICE office to show their opposition to the Trump Administration’s policies at the US-Mexico border. With leadership from Voces de la Frontera, the WISDOM network, the United Church of Christ, and many others, a powerful witness was given. Thanks to Penny Robinson for this video.