History of the Ten Key Values

The Ten Key Values came about at a marathon session at the first Green meeting in 1984,  facilitated by then Los Angeles-based and later Eugene, OR activist Jeff Land, with primary contributions by Charlene Spretnak and Murray Bookchin of the New England Institute for Social Ecology.

According to Mark Satin, a journalist invited to cover the meeting, “About 50 of us were trying to think of a project that could help define us and put us on the political map.  Everyone sensed that something important could come out of [the workshop designed to come up with the document]. A “collective brain” seemed to take hold, and we began working together as one…” 

Eventually a committee of Spretnak, Satin and Eleanor LeCain (coordinator of the Peace and Environmental Coalition) were charged with writing a draft Values Statement from the notes, and reporting that back for approval.

The eventual set of Ten Key Values they submitted was approved by consensus in late 1984, and became a foundational basis for U.S. Greens going forward.

Yet it would not be long before the Left Green Network (LGN), formed in 1988, issued their own, this time with 14 Values.  Over time, Greens in different states would adopt their own versions of the Ten Key Values, most often modifying Post-patriarchal Values into Feminism and/or Gender Equity; Personal and Social Responsibility as Social Justice, and Future Focus to include Sustainability.