Jeff Ordower is a longtime labor and community organizer. Shortly after moving to New York for college in 1987, he came out of the closet and became active in his school’s LGBT student group, which engaged in a range of creative direct actions and won policy changes. Jeff began his professional organizing career as a graduate of the AFL-CIO Organizing Institute and was a union organizer for SEIU in Texas. After a brief escape to the rainforest to learn Spanish, he began organizing for ACORN, where he was a Head Organizer in Houston, Philadelphia and Connecticut before becoming Midwest Director in 2003. Always interested in intersectional work, Ordower was one of a group of founders of the Chicago based organization Gender Just, which merged queer, class and racial justice.
When ACORN was destroyed in 2009, he stayed in his hometown of St. Louis to help found Missourians Organizing for Reform and Empowerment (MORE), which works on climate and economic justice work. Ordower has also worked nationally on anti-Wall Street fights with Occupy Homes and the Home Defenders League, and is a member of the National Collective of Rising Tide North America, which engages in non-violent direct action, targeting the root cause of climate change, especially global finance capital. Currently, in addition to working with MORE, Ordower is welcoming co-conspirators in attempts to scale up numbers of radical organizers who can financially support themselves in the work.