Location: Oakland, CA
Founding: 2021
Founders/leadership: Leila McCabe, executive director

The Beloved Communities Network (BCN) is a continuation of the years of work and wisdom that went into building the Transitions Initiative. As we continue on this journey of transitioning to a world of love, interdependence, and resilience, the Beloved Communities Network will build from the foundation that has been laid, while also strengthening, reinforcing, and designing new ways to leap into the world we imagine. 

Beloved Community is not ours in conception. The concept is rooted in the legacy of the Fellowship of Reconciliation, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Grace Lee Boggs, and others, and is carried forward through many people investing in the idea that we can live in a world of economic and social justice. With the imagination we bring to this work, we envision a holistic approach that includes leading with bold vision and values, embodied practice, radical connection, and strategic navigation.

We know that now is a time of great transition and change. Around the globe 
we see unprecedented climate disruption and upheaval across economic, political, and cultural systems. We are all facing uncertainty and seeking paths to a future we can believe in. In this time we also feel a calling, an invitation, a possibility, beyond what we can presently see.

We have the capacity to answer this call. We have the capacity to bring forth a future that is kicking to be born. We have the capacity to be that future, to be the power and strength of our vision, our purpose, and our relationships. 

Our communities are calling on us to recognize our undeniable interdependence and make a courageous commitment to love. Our mutual future depends on generating new solutions that reflect this recognition and commitment.  

This is the calling of the Beloved Communities Network.

Leila McCabe

Leila (she/her), executive director of the Beloved Communities Network and founder of JoyLabs, is a mama, artist, strategist, movement maker, and builder. She brings over 15 years of experience in community and campus organizing, electoral organizing, movement building, and facilitation. She is dedicated to creating spaces for deep and authentic relationships to emerge across diverse constituencies and coalitions. 

In 2010, Leila was a founding member of the successful minimum wage campaign in San Jose, California that helped kick-start the national minimum wage movement. In the 2012 election cycle, Leila led a team of 20 people to register 14,000 new voters in Santa Clara County going on to be the deputy field director for a progressive mayoral candidate in San Jose, the 10th largest city in the country. She has also worked in many nonprofit organizations and partnered with multiple colleges, churches, community members, and other organizations in developing curriculum and facilitating workshops. 

Leila completed a certificate in leadership and social change at DeAnza College and Bachelor’s in sociology with a concentration in community change from San Jose State University. She is currently studying to complete her certificate as a certified personal trainer from the National Academy of Sports Medicine. 

In 2021, Leila founded JoyLabs, a space where physical movement meets emotional resilience in a beloved community. JoyLabs trains the resistance through embodied resistance training. 

Leila lives in Oakland California with her husband Calvin and son Malik. She serves on the advisory board to In Lak’ech dance academy and, to bring balance and healing to her life, Leila trains capoeira, lifts weights, and dances. 

Read more about BCN’s involvement in the Queer Afro Latin Dance Fest in San Jose, CA on the Move Blog.

Read more about BCN’s graphic guide, Ten Thousand Beloved Communities, on the Move Blog.

Check out part 1 of the fireside chats cohosted by BCN and MSC at the Transformative Movement building event on the Move Blog.

Check out part 2 of the fireside chats cohosted by BCN and MSC at the Transformative Movement building event on the Move Blog.