Archive | Stories

One Voice of Many

November has always brought comfort and joy to my heart: the fall breeze, the colorful foliage, and the smell of damp air warning for a long winter to come. It’s always been a month of celebration as well. My husband and I both have November birthdays, and so do my brother and my sister in […]

Immigrant Families Under Fire: A Call to Compassion in the Heartland

Their names were Josseline, Marlen, Areceli, Omar, Gustavo, Daniel and Yolanda. Their stories were riveting and heartbreaking. Their lives are lived in fear and jeopardy. The reality of these undocumented immigrants and refugees from Central America and Mexico was described by Margaret Regan, author and journalist from Tucson, to a crowd of 200 Dubuque-area people […]

Finding Balance

My entire life I have struggled with finding balance—in everything: work and family, exercise and rest, strength and softness, learning and vulnerability, awareness and fear, justice and mercy. The older I get and the faster the world seems to go, the more visibly these tensions show up in my life; on my face, in my […]

Impact vs. Intent

The Inclusive Dubuque Network recently created a poster with a message of being welcoming and inclusive of everyone in our community in the hopes that we would see these posters in storefronts, businesses, homes, and more. We thought we’d use a quote that business leaders would recognize in order to make them feel more comfortable […]

Embracing Fear to Make a Positive Impact

Regardless of our age, race, ethnicity, gender expression, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status or political views, it is safe to say that our world appears to be changing, and quite quickly. From the millions of people who marched across the globe in support of women’s and human rights to those who gathered at airports in support […]

Out of Many, One

My name is Sam Giere. I am a husband and father. I am a teacher. I am a middle-aged white man with Nordic roots. I am a Christian preacher. I volunteer with Dubuque Community School District. I am a bagpiper in the Dubuque Fire Pipes & Drums. I grew-up along the Canadian border in Minnesota. […]

Election Results: No Excuse for Intolerance

No matter your political beliefs, this contentious election season has taken a toll on all of us. The last 18 months have exposed deep divisions in our country and have reminded us how important it is to remain committed to our work of creating an equitable and inclusive community where everyone has access to opportunity […]

“What’s your name?” A story of implicit bias

I recently tied the knot with my long-term girlfriend and best friend, and while the wedding day flew by without a hitch, it’s become evident that the days ahead for her will never be the same. What’s in a name? My last name is Aguilar and, although my name might suggest otherwise, I’m a white […]

Sharing Our Story in Oakland

A couple of weeks ago, I was honored to attend the Neighborhood Funders Group (NFG) in Oakland, California, to speak about the work we are doing in Dubuque to advance equity and inclusion. NFG’s mission is to build capacity in philanthropy to advance social justice and community change. Throughout the conference, I was struck by […]