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Michael S.C. Soto, MS

Member: QUAD Productions

Podcast Production, Podcast Host, Visual Artist

Michael S.C. Soto is a long-time member of QUAD Productions, a visual artist, and podcast creator, producer, and enthusiast. He is also a long-time leader in the LGBTQ, civil rights, and economic justice movements in Arizona and the nation. He has built a reputation for effective political leadership in red and purple states by insisting on a foundation of democracy and pluralism as the foundation for his work. Michael truly believes the adage - all politics are local – and what adrienne maree brown teaches - that patterns arise in systems. With this in mind, Michael believes to his core that the best solutions for our biggest challenges and problems facing humanity today are found first in local communities and can be scaled with the wisdom of people from every walk of life to meet any challenge. Which makes independent media and creative work even more important – we can only scale these solutions when we share them with one another and created spaces to imagine a more just future. Michael has served on the crew of QUAD Production films and video projects. He also contributed as a participant in the Queer, Broke, and Amazing! documentary. He also is passionate about podcasting, as a low barrier independent media form that allows for the democratization of ideas around the world. He has co-created, co-produced, and co-hosted two podcasts, Gender Curious and Transform: Beyond the Transition. Michael and H.L.T. Quan are currently developing a new QUAD Productions podcast, People Forward Policy, set to launch in the fall of 2024.


Today, Michael serves as the President of Equality Arizona, the state's oldest and leading statewide LGBTQ+ civil rights organization. Michael has decades of history with Equality Arizona in many roles, from intern and volunteer to the chief executive officer. Michael, once again, leads Equality Arizona so that this 30-year-old organization can provide a sustainable and inclusive political home for LGBTQ+ Arizonans and our allies. In this role he has created hundreds of hours of curriculum and instructions materials for activists around the world including co-creating the “We Don’t Want to be Stars: A 21st Century Intersectional Feminist Organizing Curriculum for these Times.” 


Michael is also a scholar and strives to be a public intellectual. As the grandson of a migrant farmer and a coal miner and chemical plant worker, and the son of a Women’s Army Corps veteran, he has dedicated his life to using his talents to create a more just and fair society, in his profession and academic life. As with most people from working class families, education has been vital to his own class mobility, but more importantly to his own development of a social justice consciousness. Michael is a graduate of Arizona State University with a Bachelor of Arts in Women and Gender Studies, the first in his family to attend and graduate from a university, and a Master of Science in Justice Studies, the first in his family to attend and graduate with an advanced degree. Michael is currently a PhD candidate in Justice Studies in the School of Social Transformation at Arizona State University, where his studies focus on pluralism as the antidote to political polarization and gateway to a more just society. He believes to his core that justice is a lifelong process and hopes to make some meaningful contribution to creating a more just society during his lifetime.

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