Waking the Goose with William Barber

Friday, 8:30am | Main Stage

Waking the Goose will feature the powerful, prophetic voice of Rev. Dr. William Barber along with gospel music leaders Shaun Whitehead, Nanette Banks and Gary Rand, as well as Ben Grace of Forefront Church in NYC, the poetry of Langston Hughes, and freedom songs of the ages, in what may be one of the most memorable Wild Goose moments among many memorable Wild Goose  moments. 

Rev. Dr. William J. Barber II

The Rev. Dr. William J. Barber II is Pastor of Greenleaf Christian Church in Goldsboro, NC and architect of the Forward Together Moral Movement that gained national acclaim with its Moral Monday protests at the North Carolina General Assembly in 2013.
He has keynoted hundreds of national and state conferences, including the 2016 Democratic National Convention, and has spoken to a wide variety of audiences across the country
Dr. Barber has served as president of the NC NAACP, since 2006 and sits on its National Board of Directors. He is currently Visiting Professor of Public Theology and Activism at Union Theological Seminary New York and is a Senior Fellow at Auburn Seminary. Dr. Barber is regularly featured in major national media outlets and is the 2015 recipient of the Puffin Award and the Franklin D. Roosevelt Four Freedoms Award. His two most recent books include Forward Together (Chalice Press) and The Third Reconstruction (Beacon Press).


Nannette Banks

Rev. Nannette Banks is a world traveler, people and poetry lover who believes in the power of worship and the sacraments to liberate and set free all who are marginalized and oppressed –for the table was set in the presence of (my)the enemy! She is also the voice of This is what happens Wild Goose Video.

Currently, she is an itinerant preacher and  serves as the Director of Alumni/ae and Church Relations at McCormick Theological Seminary in Chicago.

Shaun Whitehead

The Rev. Shaun Whitehead, D.Min, is a native of Chicago, Illinois. She pursued her theological education at McCormick Theological Seminary in Chicago. She is an ordained minister in the United Church of Christ. Shaun is the Associate University Chaplain, at St. Lawrence University in Canton, New York. As Associate Chaplain, Shaun ministers to students, faculty, staff and the broader community. Shaun is the pastor of the weekly Gospel Service, an inclusive and welcoming spiritual community. She also directs the Community Gospel Choir. Shaun founded “Got Spirit?” the annual Gospel Music Workshop & Concert held annually at the university. Through this workshop and other music initiatives, Shaun has brought many people together across racial/ethnic/cultural/religious difference. Before full time ministry, Shaun worked in Chicago’s radio industry for 14 years. As a preacher and singer, Shaun focuses her work on breaking down barriers and building relationships that are inclusive, reconciling and affirming.

Ben Grace

Ben Grace is an Australian songwriter who lives in Brooklyn NY with his wife Sara Ann and adopted “Brooklyn Terrier” Gigi. Persistent and prolific Ben has had more than 50 songs released over the last 20 years and has written in a range of styles from power pop to country. In late 2011 he left his hometown of Sydney to pursue cowriting in the US and has hosted a songwriting community that meets monthly in his apartment for the last five years. Ben has a passion for local craft beer, good stories, messy
community, and better questions. He is the worship director at Forefront Brooklyn, curates and creates progressive worship music for The Calendar Years, and works to see church be a place where everyone has a seat at the table.

Gary Rand

Gary Rand, group lead for worship and liturgy for the Wild Goose Festival, is the Director of Worship Activities and Adjunct Professor in Worship at Chicago’s McCormick Theological Seminary, and for 10 years was director of worship and the arts at the progressive, inclusive, justice-focused LaSalle Street Church. He’s studied worship with John Bell at Iona in Scotland, spent time with the Taize community in France, immersed himself in Black Gospel music under the tutelage of Gospel Legend Elsa Harris, and leads workshops on progressive worship across the country.

He’s also co-founder of The Plural Guild, a website resource for liturgy, congregational music and discussion on worship issues, and he writes for and produces the alt-worship band The Many. Follow him on Twitter @GaryERand and @ThePluralGuild.

Session ID [308]