About the Film

THE ORGANIZER is a portrait of Wade Rathke, the controversial founder of ACORN, as well as an exploration of the much maligned and misunderstood occupation of community organizing.

Before it’s infamous demise following several highly publicized scandals, ACORN had been the largest community organization in the US. Rathke, a former anti-war and welfare rights organizer founded the organization in Little Rock in 1970 and over the next decades shepherded its growth into a national political powerhouse for the poor. His entrepreneurial vision helped build ACORN but internal conflict and external pressures would lead to its tragic downfall.

Undeterred, Rathke is now building new organizations around the world and trying to rebuild at home. With a wealth of archives and interviews, THE ORGANIZER is a film about people who have dedicated their lives to the often hidden, usually messy and always controversial job of building power for the powerless.


The Filmmakers

Nick Taylor

Nick Taylor is a British/Canadian film director and editor based in Toronto. He was educated at Dawson College, Montreal and Carleton University, Ottawa. His documentary credits as editor include Ron Mann’s Know your Mushrooms and Brian D. Johnson’s Al Purdy Was Here and he has worked extensively in television. In 2010, Nick directed the short film Mirth and Madness: A Portrait of the Woodchopper’s Association about a Toronto musicians collective. The Organizer is his first feature as a director.

Joey Carey

Joey Carey is a Producer/Director and founding partner of Sundial Pictures. He has worked on a variety of scripted narrative and documentary films including Emmy nominated Welcome to Leith, The Seventh Fire, Obvious Child, Jiro Dreams of Sushi, Pariah, Jack of the Red Hearts, and Youth In Oregon. His films have played at festivals including Sundance, Berlin, SXSW, Tribeca, and Toronto, and he’s partnered with companies such as A24, Magnolia Pictures, and Samuel Goldwyn for distribution. He has also created content for companies such as Univision, Fusion, and Conde Nast. He lives and works between in New York City and Havana, Cuba.

Charles Koppelman

Charles Koppelman produces, writes, and directs documentaries and other visual media. He was Field Producer/Co-Writer for a Bill Moyers Special, The Circle of Recovery, about a group of black men recovering from substance addiction. His documentary Squatters: The Other Philadelphia Story was funded in part by the CPB and aired on PBS. Koppelman is completing Lost in Cyberspace, about Internet surveillance, and wrapping production of At The Minimum, about fast food workers in Oakland, CA and their campaign for a higher minimum wage and a union. He produced and wrote the libretto for Cubanacan, the first new Cuban opera in fifty years. It premiered at the 2015 Havana Biennal. Koppelman is currently editing a “making-of” documentary about the opera, filmed over the course of ten years. Koppelman resides in Berkeley with his wife and their two children.

Festival Screenings

New Orleans Film Festival
10.12.17 @ 7:30PM – Prytania Theater
10.16.17 @ 11AM – Ace Theater


Woodstock Film Festival
10.15.17@ 7:00PM – Upstate Films (Woodstock)


Interested in Hosting a Screening?

A Special Thanks To

Corey Adams
Evi Adams
Hunter Adams
Marcos Alexander Gomez
Jeffrey Allard
Emma Allen
Lindsay & Justin Allen
Nate Allen
Janice Andersen
Jay Anderson
John Anderson
Mark Antman
Arroyo Seco Films
Brendan Backus
Charlie Bacon
Hank Bacon
Lauren Baker
Wesley Barr
JJ Beck
Manfred Becker
Suzanne & Bobby Becker
Daniel Bekerman
James Belfer
R. Berg
Nancy June Bernier
Philippa Biddle
Brittany Black
Meira Blaustein
Chris Bluhm
Micheal Boedigheimer
Terese Y Bouey
Kate Brandt
Bianca Brittain
Fred Brooks
Nick Brown
Michael Browne
Gibb Brownlie
Susan Buckler
Jaime Buenaño
Diné Butler
Kay Butler
Nancy Cain
Chris Campbell
Meg Campbell
Dan Cantor
Alan Carey

Colin Carey
Jason Carey
Marty & Susan Carey
Meg & Tobe Carey
Zak Carey
Vito Castelgrande
Dolon Chakravartty
Helen K Chase
Sara & Norman I. Cohen
Sandy Cohen Carey
Diane Colello
Edrian Colina
Chris Collins
Luisa Conlon
Erin Cooke
Peggy Cooke
Merle Cosgrove
Jay Costelo
Dominic Couzens
William Covington
Krista Craven
Melanie Craxton
Burrill Crohn
John Crowley-Delman
Anasha Cummings
Luisa Dantas & JoLu Productions
Ed David
Maryellen Deckard
DEGA Films
BL Dings
Emily Dings
Nice Dissolve
Julia Donahue
Judy Duncan
Michael Erickson
Emre Esensoy
Tory Ettlinger
Lauren Fajardo
Secky Fascione
James Fenton & Darryl Pinckney
Janice Fine
Robert Fisher
Orell Fitzsimmons & Judy Graves
Joshua Flannigan
Maria Fortiz-Morse
Lily Frances Henderson

Akiva Freidlin
Bart Friedman
Sarah Friedman
Jenner Furst
Carla Gagliotti
Martha Giblas
Julia Gillard
David Gillis
Larry Ginsburg
Sophia Giordano
Alex Glustrom
Nikki Goldbeck
Susan Goldman
Alice Goodman
Sherry Gould
Owen Granich-Young
Joshua Evan Greenberg
Monique Greenwood
Jess Haines-Stephan
Eileen Hall
Rachel Haymann
Alex Hemard
Jay Hessey
William Hetzer
Rachel Hiles
Alex Himmelbaum
Elisabeth Holm
Jonathan Hopfner
Cedric Howe
Peter Hudgin
Marie Hurt
Joy Susan Hutchinson
Mary Ianniccheri
Mary Irwin-Scott
Rose Jambrone
Tatiana Jaunzems
Bob & Louise Jeanne
Jamie Jeanne
Brian D. Johnson
Steven C. Kahn
Cynthia Kane
David Kaplan
Doug Karr
Johanna Kasimow
Linda Kawer

Christie Keeling
Samir Khan
Cambiz A. Khosravi
Arlene Kimata and Gary Kitahata
Austin King
Elizabeth Kingsley
Katherine Klick
Victoria Klingenstierna
Tanaha Koontz
Charles Koppelman
Leslie Koren
Katie Krelove
Joseph Krings
Beulah Labostrie
Tyler Lafreniere
Owin Lambeck
Tabitha LaMountain
Mark Landsman
Noah Lang
Keir Lawson
Amy Leaman
Elizabeth Leeds
Jared Leeds
Linda Leeds
Peter Lemiszki
Julia Lerman
Sara Levine
Ludella Lewis
Simon Linder
Brigit Loud
Kay Lustberg-Goldbeck
Jim Lynch
Dave Mark
Alex Matisse
K Scott Maynard
John Mayo
James McGuire
Dara McHugh
Jeff McMurrich
Richard Meischeid & Susanne Iannece
Soren Meischeid
Nicco Mele
Katya Meyer
Keith Miller
Jayna Mitchell
Ellen V Moore

Sam Morrill
Lila & Dave Mortimer
Niland Mortimer
Anna Mould
Kathy Moulton
Paul Mozian
Jennifer Mullins
Deirdre Murphy
Mary Nally
Edward Noble
Jeremy O’Brien
Eamonn O’Connor
Jillian O’Reilly
Jennifer Ogg
Lois Ott
Daniel Pacheco
Gabriel Pacheco
Lucy Pacheco
Roula Partheniou
Anne Peretz
Chris Perry
Michael Pertnoy
Megan Platts
Bruce Plotkin
Martha Plotkin
Jen Q. Public
Margaret Randazzo
Chaco Rathke
Wade Rathke
Randy Ray
Ewan Richards
Ruth Rinehart
Cinnamon & Curry Rinzler
Craig Robbins
Glenn Rogers
Joel Rogers & Sarah Siskind
Hannah Ronson
Daniel Russell
Elizabeth Russell
Raymond A. Russell II
John Russo
Matt Rvng
Sara Maria Salamone
Dan Satorius
Michael Scheff

Steven Schreiber
Bob Schuler
Alex Schuster
Rachel Schwerin
Frank Scruggs
T.M. Scruggs
Meriah, Lindsay, & Orin Shands
Paul Shands
Tristan Shands
Trace Sheehan
Zack Sheppard
Richard Silver
Prachee Sinha
Peter Slotte
Joel Solomon
Asori Soto & Malena Svarch
Jake Spector
Indira Stewart
Hilary Stoddard
Bethany Sumner
Casey Switzer
Astra Taylor
Katia Taylor
Shawn Taylor
Victor Taylor
Gerry Tenney
Jack Thompson
Quanita Toffie
Brendan Toller
Bradley Toone
David Tozzo
Nikki Tummon
Joan Walker
John Wayne Reinhard
Valerie Webber
Sean Weisglas
Mischa Weisman
Mark Westberg
Kevin Whelan
Morgan White
Julia Willoughby Nason
Willow Mixed Media
Carl Wilson
Celine Wong
Christopher Wos
Emma Yohanan
Yossi and Max
Doug Young
Stanley Zamkow