Cole Bennett (he/him) is a third-year law student at the Georgia State University College of Law, community organizer, and National Fellow with Move to Amend. In both recognition of and disgust with the intrinsic link between legislative corruption and environmental degradation, he previously worked as a political organizer for Georgia Conservation Voters prior to his time with Move to Amend. There, Cole used his knowledge and resources as a community organizer to help elect environmental advocates in the state of Georgia and lobby those in power to hold them accountable.
In both his career and personal life, Cole is fiercely committed to the power of positive thinking and the idea that great change is possible if you are willing to fight for it.
While it may be easy to lament the rapidly deteriorating state of the environment and climate, he remains optimistic and inspired by the change he has been able to see and the connections he has been able to make through this work. Moreover, he is able to see a growing shift amongst his colleagues, peers, and members of his generation away from oppressive systems that have failed us for far too long and towards more sustainable, equitable solutions.
Most recently, he has been working with the People’s Coalition to Stop Cop City and the Cop City Vote movement to save the Weelaunee Forest and halt construction of the disastrous Cop City police training facility in his home city of Atlanta. While the city of Atlanta and its mayor's conduct regarding Cop City and the understandable dissent thereof has been nothing short of deplorable - a perfect example of the corrupt, undemocratic, and detestable marriage between government and corporate interests - the fierce and multi-faceted response from the Atlantan people has been quite the opposite.
Cole is extremely proud to be able to contribute his organizing experience and legal expertise to assist the massive and inspiring Stop Cop City movement in Atlanta. This movement has seen citizens from all different backgrounds come together, blending political involvement, direct action, artistic creation, solidarity building, and more to fight for the Weelaunee Forest and against a militarized police force trained in civilian suppression. This past summer, he and others helped the Cop City Vote movement gather over 116,000 signatures for a petition to allow a ballot referendum for revoking the Cop City land lease and is currently working with the People’s Campaign to Stop Cop City to ensure fair procedures are adopted for this referendum and the signature verification process.
When not giving his elected officials a hard time, Cole can be found hiking in the North Georgia Mountains, visiting National Parks, and making full use of the numerous public green spaces in his surprisingly verdant metropolitan hometown. For more information about how YOU can get involved with the Stop Cop City movement and help fight environmental racism (and fascist authoritarianism) here in Georgia and beyond, please do not hesitate to reach out at [email protected]. Keep fighting the good fight!
WATCH: Ecology Network call - February 08, 2024 - Special Guest Speaker: Cole Bennett
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