For over two decades, Christian Picciolini, who once led a white supremacist organization, has worked as a peace advocate and "hate breaker", helping disengage people -- including neo-Nazis, white nationalists and Islamist jihadists -- from extremist groups. Here, he shares the story of Daniel from Kentucky.Continue reading
Why you should listen
After leaving the white-supremacist skinhead movement he helped build in America during the 1980s and 90s, Christian Picciolini earned a degree in international relations from DePaul University. He launched Goldmill Group, a global media and counter-extremism consulting firm. In 2016, he won an Emmy for his role in producing an anti-hate advertising campaign aimed at helping people disengage from violent extremist groups. His life since leaving the white-supremacist movement over two decades ago has been dedicated to helping others counter racism and extremism by founding the Free Radicals Project.
Picciolini has spoken all over the world, sharing his unique and extensive knowledge, teaching all who are willing to learn about building greater peace through empathy and compassion. His involvement in the early American skinhead movement is chronicled in his memoir White American Youth: My Descent into America's Most Violent Hate Movement—and How I Got Out, and his more recent book Breaking Hate: Confronting the New Culture of Extremism examines extremist disengagement. He has also co-developed a television docu-series, Breaking Hate, based on his work helping people disengage from violent ideologies.