Paul Engler

Short bio

Paul Engler is founding director of the Center for the Working Poor, based in Los Angeles. He has worked as an organizer in the immigrant rights, global justice, and labor movements. Paul is one of the founders of the Momentum Training, which educates hundreds of activists each year in the principles of momentum-driven mobilization. For more information about the trainings, visit www.momentumcommunity.org.

Long bio

Paul Engler is a co-founder of Momentum, which instructs hundreds of activists each year in the principles of effective protest. He is co-author, along with Mark Engler, of the influential book on the craft of mass mobilization, This Is an Uprising: How Nonviolent Revolt Is Shaping the Twenty-First Century (Nation Books). Paul is the founder of The Center for the Working Poor in Los Angeles, California, an intentional community with core principles of Strategic Nonviolence, Voluntary Simplicity, Intentional Community, Hospitality, Community Building, and Spirituality and Faith in Action. Paul worked as a community organizer for low-wage workers in the 2000’s, and was involved in multiple social movements including the global justice movement, the anti-war movement, the immigrant rights uprising in 2006, and Occupy Wall Street.

Paul is a certified teacher of Centering Prayer under the auspices of Contemplative Outreach, and founded and has been a leader of one of the youngest Centering Prayer groups in the country for over a decade. He has a daily contemplative practice, and spends an average of 10-20 days each year in monastic and contemplative retreat. He has a LMFT, and is a Licensed Psychotherapist No. 115707.

A higher-resolution photo of Paul is available here.



2021 CWP Newsletter Summary

December 15th, 2021

There is a big debate among economists about a curious phenomenon unfolding right now called “The Great Resignation”. We have an immense labor shortage because people are not returning to work as the experts expected (common after a recession). There … Continue reading

2021 Center Update: Ring the Bell of Hope… Again, and Again

December 15th, 2021

This fall, in one of my first trips to visit my coworkers from the Ayni Institute in Boston, I stopped by New York City to visit one of my closest friends, Eric Stoner. And I was sitting on his couch, … Continue reading

2021 House Journal

December 15th, 2021

The Center for the Working Poor was founded in 2006, but we didn’t move into our large Victorian house until 2007. Therefore, we have been in the house for 14 years now; and throughout this time, only Paul Engler has … Continue reading

The Story of Community Counseling

December 15th, 2021

Over the last year, we have started beta groups for a new model of mutual aid counseling, called Community Counseling that has engaged dozens in weekly small group counseling practice and training. In November, I went to Boston to lead … Continue reading

2020 Center Update: Surrender and Become Attentive

December 17th, 2020

“To everything there is a season, A time for every purpose under heaven: A time to be born, And a time to die …” — Ecclesiastes 3:1 “Surrender to what is dying, and become attentive to what is emerging.”  — … Continue reading

Monasticism, Indigenous Cultures, Burning Man, and/or Kingdom of God?: My trip to Taize.

December 27th, 2019

After being invited to Barcelona, Spain this fall for a chaotic tour of book talks, TV appearances, and radio interviews, I needed a place to recover from all the activity. And one of the greatest realizations of my life has … Continue reading

Are We Cells in a Mystical Body? Center Update 2018

December 24th, 2018

As many of you know, I am a social justice geek. I compulsively read and think about social movements, and have been doing this for a long time, and am now considered a specialist in the field commonly referred to … Continue reading

CENTER UPDATE 2017

January 18th, 2018

The election of Trump was like somebody threw a political bomb into the middle of a crowded room. For undocumented people, it meant fear of losing DACA and being deported. For labor unions and the working poor, it meant losing … Continue reading