Behind the Swoosh: Sweatshops & Social Justice
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Behind the Swoosh: Sweatshops & Social Justice

De Forest, Wisconsin, United States

De Forest, Wisconsin, United States
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The best kept secret in music


Wow!! What a presentation. I knew and heard that it was good, but had no idea the impact it would have on myself and the others that were present. Besides the incredible message, I was so impressed with Jim. My 10th grade son was there and I was so happy for him to see such a role model. There was Jim, this handsome, athletic, well spoken, intelligent, young man that made a stand for what he believed in, the rights and dignity of others. Thank you again for all of your help. Peace. - Archdiocese of Philadelphia

We had a phenomenal program with Jim - standing room only. Worthy for us to bring him back again even as early as this coming fall semester. - Siena College

I wanted to let you know that yesterday we had an end of the year awards program that recognized students and organizations who have done outstanding work this year and Behind the Swoosh won the award for Social Awareness Program of the Year. Nominations were accepted from the entire campus community so you should know that your program touched many people. - Merrimack College

JIM HIT A HOME RUN!!! The kids LOVED his presentation . . . he really connected with them! - Carmichael, CA

Everything went wonderfully! The room was full and we even ran out of chairs. Everyone seemed to learn a lot and to have their minds opened. There has been good follow up conversations, as well. It was a great success! - Santa Clara University

Well we had about 150 people there and they stayed for the duration of the presentation. Many of them seemed motivated to take action, so we are trying to set up some reflection sessions to talk about the issue further. Jim did an awesome job and was very engaging! They got some local press coverage. Thanks. - Institute for Justice & Peace

Once again, thank you! Your presentation at John Carroll University last week was unbelievable! I have been to many a talk and presentation on justice issues and this was one of the best--truly very professional, organized and touching. Thanks again--you were so inspiring. - John Carroll University



Named YOUNG ACTIVIST of the YEAR. The Mario Savio Foundation recognized and honored Jim’s work for justice, naming him the “Young Activist of the Year.”

He has spent time traveling the globe and doing volunteer work in Asia and Europe with Mother Teresa’s Missionaries of Charity.

Our event with Jim Keady, Behind the Swoosh was incredible! Jim arrived early, and was very personable. We held a quick meet and greet where a few of the people who helped put on the event were able to meet him and talk with him. From there we headed to the event where Jim was incredible at captivating our audience. After his speech he received a well deserved standing ovation. His knowledge, passion, credibility, respect, hard work, and determination for social justice shined through during his talk, and our audience was really captivated. Afterwards he hung out with a few of us for a couple hours, and we really appreciated his time, wisdom, and positive energy.
May 3, 2012
Bridgewater State University

Jim Keady, theologian, activist, educator, and former elected official, is a founding director of Educating for Justice, Inc. Jim has spoken across the United States and at international venues to thousands of interested audience members. He has been sought out by members of the U.S. Congress, as well various university administrators, religious and union leaders and student groups to offer his personal and professional experience and critiques on the issues of sweatshops, globalization and social justice.
Jim holds a masters degree with distinction in theology from St. John’s University (NYC) where he concentrated his studies in social ethics and pastoral theology. Along with studying theology, Jim also coached with St. John’s Men’s Soccer team, at the time, the NCAA Division One National Champions. He was eventually forced to resign from his job because he refused to wear and promote Nike’s products as part of the school’s $3.5 million dollar endorsement deal with the sportswear giant.
Prior to his work with EFJ, Jim taught high school religion for five years at schools in New York and New Jersey. He also played and coached soccer at the youth, high school, college and professional levels. Along with his graduate degree from St. John’s, he holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology from St. Joseph’s University.



PROGRAM DESCRIPTION: The debates about sweatshops and living wages have been raging in recent years on U.S. college and high school campuses. But what is it like to live on a sweatshop wage in a developing country? Educating for Justice director, Jim Keady found out. He spent one month in an Indonesian factory workers' slum living on $1.25 a day, a typical wage paid to Nike's subcontracted workers.

He slept on thin mats placed atop a concrete floor and woke up hungry in the savage Indonesian heat. He ate rice, vegetables and noodles painstakingly cooked atop the same kerosene heater he used to boil drinking water. He dealt with football-sized rats as fumes from burning trash mixed in the open air with the scent of the villages open sewer system.

This St. Joes grad had a motive for spending his summer in such distress: to give the Nike sweatshop issue a human face.

In this interactive multi-media presentation that includes PowerPoint, role-playing, powerful video footage, and a Question-Answer period, Keady shares his personal account of lived solidarity. He also imparts the latest information on Nike's overseas practices and attempt to de-commodify labor, challenging the audience to deal in human terms with the women, men and sometimes children, who are the foundation of Nikes global manufacturing.