Kostas Bagakis

Dr. Kostas Bagakis, a bilingual working-class Greek-American, was an early member of the Unlearning Racism movement started by Erica Sherover Marcuse. He has a unique approach to community building and has spent decades developing a systemic approach for looking at the pervasive and, too often, hidden effects of class issues on individuals, organizations, and community. Kostas speaks at conferences and facilitates workshops which demonstrate how class issues divide people and impact everyone's ability to find meaning in work and live together in diverse communities.

Kostas was born and raised in Oakland, CA, as the son of immigrant parents. Educated in the public school system, he spent half of his life as a manual/skilled laborer, then became a public school teacher and later a university professor. His identity informs his commitment to the value of a "full-group process approach" to problem-solving. He shows clearly how people from marginalized groups provide us with essential information for creating viable solutions to systemic organizational and community problems.

Kostas' deep theoretical understanding of and original teachings about societal structures (including class, race, and gender), as well as his gentle and articulate manner, give him a profound ability to bring together people from diverse backgrounds in conversation, work, and creative problem-solving.

Using Powerful Non-Defensive Communication techniques, Kostas works primarily with nonprofits, educational institutions, social activists and community groups. Any organization can gain new perspectives for organizational change and enhance the ability of its people to work together with dignity and respect. Kostas is a lecturer at San Francisco State University.


Kostas Has Taught: Critical Thinking, Philosophy, Cultural Democracy and Peace Studies.


Kostas Offers Presentations and Workshops On: Diversity, Class, Racism, Cultural Democracy, Learning Theory and Practice, Democratic Education & Group Process, and Community Education Programs


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