About Rus Funk

You want to make a difference.

Rus Ervin Funk is a consultant specializing in working with organizations and communities.  His efforts focus on helping create systems level changes and transformation that make organizations and communities more “welcoming, respectful and valuing.”

His primary focus areas include promoting healthy masculiniities; preventing violence; promoting equity, diversity and justice. Rus is a long-time activist and community organizer focusing on anti-racism, and gender justice.  He has more than 30 years experience in mobilizing men to help end violence against women, and working with communities, campuses and organizations.

His organizing efforts include co-founding: DC Men Against Rape (now Men Can Stop Rape, Inc.), MensWork: eliminating violence against women, inc., the Own It Initiative (a project of the Center for Women and Families), the Ohio Men’s Action Network, White Folks Against Racism, the People’s Coalition for Justice and much more.

Rus serves on several national and transnational boards. He is the secretary of the Board of the National Center on Sexual and Domestic Violence, serves as the Co-Chair of Male Engagement of World Without Exploitation (WorldWE, an international coalition to combat human trafficking and exploitation) and is a co-founder of the North American Men Engage Network (NAMEN – a US and Canada network of efforts to engage and organize men to promote gender equality and gender justice) a where he currently serve on the Steering Committee, is the Newsletter Editor, and serves as the NAMEN representative to the board of the Global MenEngage Alliance.

Rus is currently working with Nebraska to create statewide supports for engaging men to help end gender-based violence, with Metro-Louisville to help promote structures to support engaged and responsible fathering, Lexington to develop a community-wide engaging men initiative, the state of Kentucky on an effort to establish meaningful access at all domestic violence agencies in the state and more.

Rus has travelled extensively throughout the US and internationally, he is a sought-after trainer and speaker. He was part of the coalition that crafted and worked to pass the original Violence Against Women Act (focusing on the Safe Campuses and Civil Rights sections of that law).

Rus has also written extensively. In 1993, Rus wrote the first book in the US, by a man, for men about stopping rape (Stopping Rape: A Challenge for Men, New Society Publishers).

Some of his recent publications include:
• “The Role of adult pornography in intimate partner sexual violence perpetrators’ offending” (with Walter S. DeKeseredy) in Perpetrators of Intimate Partner Sexual Violence: A Multidisciplinary approach to prevention, recognition and intervention (2017) Ed by Louise McOrmond-Plummer, Jennifer Y. Levy-Peck and Patricia Easteal. Routledge Press (pp 134 – 142).
• “Addressing and combating intimate partner sexual violence” (with Lundy Bancroft) in Perpetrators of Intimate Partner Sexual Violence: A Multidisciplinary approach to prevention, recognition and intervention (2017) Ed by Louise McOrmond-Plummer, Jennifer Y. Levy-Peck and Patricia Easteal. Routledge Press (pp 179 – 189).
• “Men’s Work: Men’s voices and actions against sexism and violence.” in Journal of Prevention and Intervention in the Community. (2008) Vol 36: 1 – 2; (pp 155 – 171).
• “Be realistic, Demand the impossible: Taking action against pornography” in Pornography: Driving the demand in international sex trafficking (2007) ed by Captive Daughters Media.(pp 346 – 381).

Rus lives in Louisville, KY with his partner, their 7-year old child, and cat who belongs to himself. He enjoys writing, baking, tending his roses, bike-riding, hiking, and photography.

A History of Success

  • In 2014, I began coordinating the Own It Initiative of the Center for Women and Families (as a result of the merger between MensWork and CWF).  In less than 6 months, I grew the email list from 35 to 750 and helped them to initiate 2 male engagement strategies. In 2015 we organized the inaugural “Male Voices Against Violence” breakfast that drew more than 150 people (mostly men) to learn how they could speak out against gender-based violence.
  • In 2012-2013, I worked with the Ohio Domestic Violence Network, the Ohio Department of Health and the Ohio Alliance to End Sexual Violence to create the Ohio Men’s Action Network (Oh-MAN) to help support efforts to engage men in boys at the local level across the state.
  • In 2011-2012, I co-organized the North American Men Engage Network (NAMEN) and currently serve on the Steering Committee.
  • In 2011, I co-founded the Intimate Partner Violence Prevention Coordinating Council,  to enhance the capacity of state/territory domestic violence coalitions and community-based domestic violence programs to advance a comprehensive national prevention agenda and broaden support for its full implementation at the national, state, territory and local levels.
  • In 2007, I wrote Reaching Men:  Strategies for Preventing Sexist Attitudes, Behaviors and Violence (Jist Publications) which has become a key resource for programs working on gender based violence about how to effectively talk with men and boys.
  • In 2006, I co-founded MensWork:  eliminating violence against women inc., a community based organization in Louisville, KY that became a national model of engaging men in efforts to end gender based violence.  in 2014, MensWork merged with the Center for Women and Families, and became the Own It Initiative.
  • In 1999, I became a founding board member of the National Center on Domestic and Sexual Violence.  I continue to serve as the Board Secretary.
  • In 1993, I wrote Stopping Rape:  A Challenge for Men (New Society Publishers).  The First book written by a man for men about ways that men can stop rape and domestic violence.