Interview With Good Trouble Beloit
The Round Table got a chance to sit down with Tony Capozziello, the founder of a local Beloit advocacy group: Good Trouble Beloit. On Tuesday, Feb 15, Capozziello won the Governor’s Financial Literacy Award for exceptional financial education for Wisconsinites.
Round Table: What is Good Trouble Beloit and how did it start?
Tony Capozziello: Good Trouble Beloit is a community organization that I started about a year ago. I have a lot of former students that felt because of COVID, their futures don’t look too bright. I worked with a couple of groups in town, NAACP, Justice Overcoming Borders, etc. So we are currently a group about eighty strong. We meet twice a month, and we take on the issues that matter most to the members.
RT: So you are kind of like a support group? Would that be a proper classification?
TC: We are a borderline support group and mostly advocacy. What you find with our student population is there’s a lot of poverty. Support in a small circle is fantastic and required to get people comfortable in a space where they can share the things on their mind.
RT: Does Good Trouble Beloit have a mission statement? If so, what is it?
TC: Yes we do. Guided by the wisdom and example of the late Congressman John Lewis, Good Trouble Beloit is here to serve the people: the voiceless and disenfranchised, the powerless and the neediest among us. We care about people, the planet, inequality, injustices, economics, and empowering every citizen to speak their truth and influence government policies at all levels.
RT: How do you think we can raise more awareness to this program?
TC: Recently, we have been discussing hosting TED Talks in the fall. So that would be late in August or right away in September. We believe everything can be traced back to poverty in our communities. Our school right now is in the 70 plus percent rate of poverty.
RT: So where can someone donate to this fund? Or is it solely a non profit organization?
TC: Right now, we’re not asking for money in hand. Because we don’t rely on outside money, we are not beholden to anybody or anything other than facts and truth; Good Trouble will ask tough questions of the powerful and will demand answers and action through public pressure and awareness campaigns. We don’t have to answer to anybody.