Queen Liliuokalani Trust LogoQueen Liliuokalani Trust Logo

©2019 Lili‘uokalani Trust

Speakers

2017 Conference Speakers 

We are excited to host some of the most successful world-renowned speakers, social innovators and thought leaders at our 2017 Innovation Huddle. Attendees will engage in discussions focusing on innovative technologies and inspiring stories with the hopes of sparking social change, creating insightful solutions, and building lasting partnerships. 

Check out our talented line up of speakers... 

close

Glenna Avila

California Institute of the Arts

Glenna Avila is an artist, educator, and arts administrator, dedicated to the arts, young people, and communities.  She is currently the Wallis Annenberg Director of the California Institute of the Arts Community Arts Partnership (CAP) program and has served in this position since 1991.  The CAP program is a co-curricular program of the college and encompasses 55 distinct youth arts education programs located in 60 diverse neighborhoods throughout Los Angeles County in partnership with 45 public schools, community-based organizations and social service agencies; employing 60 CalArts faculty artists, 50 CalArts alumni artists, and 300 CalArts student artists as instructors; and creating innovative, in-depth arts education programs for 10,000 youth ages 6-18 annually.  In 2004, the CAP program received the Coming Up Taller Award, the highest national honor for youth arts education programs.

Before coming to CalArts, she held a variety of positions with the City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs, including Director of the Los Angeles Murals Program, Director of the McGroarty Art Center, and Director of the Los Angeles Photography Center.  For thirteen years she was a Supervisor in the Summer Youth Employment Program through the U.S. Department of Labor, teaching and providing hundreds of jobs in the arts for low-income youth ages 14-21.   She has painted over 75 community murals throughout Los Angeles, the majority of which are collaborations with youth and their communities, and has exhibited her work at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Armand Hammer Museum, Laguna Art Museum, among others. She was one of 10 artists commissioned by the Olympic Organizing Committee to paint a mural on the freeway in downtown Los Angeles for the 1984 Olympic Arts Festival entitled “L.A. Freeway Kids,” a tribute to the youth of Los Angeles.

close

DJ Anit

Tina Viernes, aka DJ Anit, is a booming force, and a pillar of Hawaii’s music scene. She's the resident DJ at Addiction, Honolulu’s premier nightclub in the Modern Honolulu Hotel.  She is Hawaii’s original female Dj, and one of the first people to expose Hawaii’s largest night-life venues to open format.  While she started young, she is endlessly evolving and pushing the limits, emerging as one of Hawaii’s most relevant influencial sounds.  With unmatched charisma and dynamism, she seamlessly stitches together everything from indie rock to electro to R&B to hip-hop, never tripping over boundaries of genre. She does it all with an effortless magnetism that draws infectious energy from the crowd as she intuitively controls the room.  

Tina has had the opportunity to share her talents on the west coast, Singapore and the Philippines. In June 2014, she opened up the BET (Black Entertainment Television) Awards with Pharrell Williams. She has also opened concerts for: Big Sean, 2 Chainz, YG, Kid Ink, Kendrick Lamar, Dilated Peoples and Run DMC. She has spun at a number of after parties for some of the music industry's elite, including: Toni Braxton, Jon B, Nas, Dilated Peoples, Busta Rhymes, Erykah Badu, Nicole Scherzinger, Bubba Sparxxx, LMFAO, Run DMC, and Bruno Mars. Aside from the impressive resume Tina has built for herself, it is a small marvel to watch her spin live in any environment, to watch her instantly build rapport with her audience and transform any event into a remarkable experience.

close

Bob Bates

Inner-City Arts

Bob Bates has been a professional artist for thirty years and has taught art throughout the country, including at the University of Miami in Florida. While working with kids on Skid Row in Los Angeles, Bob had a spiritual vision: to create an art space where at-risk children could explore their creativity, learn and grow.

Joining forces with businessman and entrepreneur Irv Jaeger, Bob realized his vision when Inner-City Arts opened its doors to 60 children in 1989. As Inner-City Arts Artistic Director, Bob still brings vision, passion and dedication to his work with children, teachers and families, and is regularly invited to lead workshops in Los Angeles, throughout the country and internationally.

Bob's creative journey as an artist, musician, inventor and educator is ongoing. His love of creativity is deeply linked to the mystery of life itself, and has guided him in all aspects of his explorations and interactions with children, teenagers and adults. Bob received a BA from the Kansas City Art Institute and an MFA from the University of Cincinnati.

close

Laura Beeman

Head Coach, UH Women's Basketball

Beeman was formally introduced as the new head women’s basketball coach at Hawai‘i at a press conference on March 23, 2012 at Les Murakami Stadium. She came to UH with nearly 20 years of coaching experience on both the collegiate and professional level. The San Bernardino, Calif., native established herself as one of the best junior college coaches in the nation before enjoying similar success as an assistant coach at USC and with the WNBA’s Los Angeles Sparks. Beeman, 45, is the eighth head coach since the program’s inception in 1974 and the third female head coach in its history.
 
Beeman spent her final two seasons prior to Hawai‘i at USC as associate head coach under Michael Cooper where they re-established the Women of Troy as a PAC-12 power. There she helped quickly revitalize the program with 42 combined wins in the last two years. In her first season, the team finished 24-13 and advanced to the WNIT Championship game. The team ultimately finished with the program’s best record in 17 years.
 
The Women of Troy garnered an 18-win season and third-place finish in the Pac-12 in 2011-12, Beeman’s final campaign at USC, including a six-game win streak to finish the regular season. In just two years, Beeman coached nearly a half dozen all-conference players, while also helping put together back-to-back nationally ranked recruiting classes.
 
Beeman and Cooper had previously worked together for the WNBA’s Los Angeles Sparks in 2008. As an assistant under Cooper that season, she helped lead the Sparks to the Western Conference Finals after a one-year absence from the post-season. While with the Sparks, Beeman coached the No. 1 pick Candace Parker along with veteran All-Stars Lisa Leslie and DeLisha Milton-Jones.
 
Prior to her stint with the Trojans, Beeman made her mark at the junior college level where she enjoyed a phenomenally successful 15-year run as the head coach at Mt. San Antonio College (Mt. SAC). There she led the Mounties to 10 conference championships and four California Community College State Championships—including a string of three straight from 2006-08. Beeman was selected conference Coach of the Year four times and was voted the district and regional coach of the year in 2001. She led Mt. SAC to a school-best 37-1 record in both the 2007 and 2008 season. During her tenure with the Mounties, she produced 80 all-conference selections, 24 all-state selections, and 10 all-region selections. Beeman posted a 390-110 (.780) record during her tenure at Mt. SAC.

As a player, Beeman was an All-American guard at Cal State San Bernardino where she set the career, season and game assist records. She graduated in 1992 with a degree in business administration from CS San Bernardino and later earned a master’s degree in education with an emphasis on counseling from the University of Redlands. She earned a second master’s degree in education with an emphasis in physical education from Azuza Pacific University.

 

close

Kevin Carroll

Kevin Carroll Katalyst LLC

Raised by his grandparents in the greater Philadelphia area, Kevin spent endless hours at the neighborhood playground where he found his “calling” -- a red rubber ball. His subsequent pursuit of sport and play (aka his "red rubber ball") and his love of learning have led Kevin to becoming an author, a speaker and a social change agent.

Kevin is an author of three highly successful books published by ESPN, Disney Press and McGraw-Hill. He has helped turn creative ideas into reality for organizations such as Nike, Starbucks, adidas, Walt Disney, Target, Proctor & Gamble, Under Armour, Mattel, the National Basketball Association and many others.

Kevin has dedicated his life to advancing education, sports and play as a vehicle for social change and success. He was honored to address the United Nations as part of the UN Year of Sports for Development and Peace in 2005 and is an ongoing advisor and active supporter for many global social innovation organizations. In 2013, Kevin was named by SUCCESS magazine as one of 19 “SEERS – changing the world!”

close

Katie Copeskey

Crisis Text Line

Katie has been a volunteer Crisis Counselor for Crisis Text Line since March of 2016. Crisis Text Line provides 24/7, free, confidential support to people in crisis via text message. Since August of 2013, Crisis Text Line has exchanged over 45 million text messages. The data gathered from these text messages can be accessed via Crisis Trends which was launched to share the volume, velocity, and variety of data with the public. The data shows that the demand for volunteer crisis counselors is increasing.

To meet the growing need of people in crisis, Katie's goal is to double the amount of Hawaii Crisis Counselors to 60. She also works as a research coordinator at Tripler Army Medical Center testing a potential treatment for PTSD. Katie received her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Psychology from the University of Arizona and Springfield College, respectively. In Katie’s spare time, she loves hiking and stand up paddleboarding. She met her husband here on island and they will be celebrating two years of marriage in October.

close

Fanshen Cox DiGiovanni

One Drop of Love

An award-winning playwright, actor, producer and educator, Fanshen Cox DiGiovanni is currently touring the one-woman show she wrote and performs in: One Drop of Love. One Drop travels near and far, in the past and present to explore the intersections of race, class and gender in pursuit of justice and love. The show is produced by Cox DiGiovanni, Ben Affleck, and Matt Damon.

Fanshen has been featured in the New York Times and on NPR as a spokesperson on using the arts to explore racial identity. She served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Cape Verde, West Africa, and has designed curricula for and taught English as a Second Language to students from all over the world. She has been honored with the Peace Corps' Franklin H. Williams Award, and with Peace Corps Fellows and Hollywood Foreign Press Association scholarships and an 'Exemplar of Humanity Centered Media' award by Media Done Responsibly. She holds a B.A. in Spanish and Education, an M.A. in TESOL, and an M.F.A. in Acting and Performance in Film, TV and Theater. She serves on the boards of the non-profit MixedRootsStories.org and of Project Greenlight Digital Studios. Fanshen is also a Teaching Artist for A Broaderway - an arts camp for underserved girls. Her play, One Drop of Love, was awarded Best Non-Fiction Script by the United Solo Theatre Festival, and the film version won Best Documentary Film at the Roxbury International Film Festival. 

close

Keoni DeFranco

Lua Technologies

Keoni DeFranco is the Founder and CEO of Lua Technologies, a secure messaging and telemedicine solution for the healthcare industry. 

He is a representative to the United Nations for SustainUS, an active participant in the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues (UNPFII), a mentor for TechStars and Purple Mai'a and a board member for HalawaiNYC (a non-profit organization focused on fostering the Hawaiian and Pacific Island community in New York City). He is also a contributor to Fortune online magazine. 

Keoni is a graduate of Wesleyan University where he received a B.A. in International Relations with a focus on Nation Building and the Arab-Israeli Conflict. Keoni also studied at the London School of Economics.

close

Matt Del Rosario

Retired professional performer

Matt Hidekazu Del Rosario (aka Lauhala Matt) was born and raised in Hawaii. He was woven together with plantation values from Lanai and the city lights of Oahu. He participated in numerous community-based activities. Matt was that average keiki, playing in the dirt with his slippahs on his hands and always ready for recess. He attended Hanahauoli School and graduated from Iolani High School in 2002. Matt ventured to North Carolina School of the Arts on scholarship to pursue his BFA in Dance Composition, and in 2008 began touring as a professional performer for Pilobolus Dance Theater. There he collaborated with some of the world’s top artists, including Steve Banks, Art Spiegelman, Inbal Pinto and Avshalom Pollak, Sidi Larbi Cherkauoi, Michael Moschen, Takuya Muramastu, Penn and Teller, OK Go and MIT Robotics Lab. Matt was nominated for a Princess Grace Award for Solo Performance in 2010.

Since retiring from his professional career in 2014, Matt has pursued his interests in educating through dance. In the last three years, Matt has taught in over 280 different types of educational systems: public, private, charter, community, homeschool, pre-K, elementary, middle/high school, college, university, masters programs, doctoral programs, senior citizens, special needs/handi-capable, “at risk”, domestic, international, and ages 2 ½ to 97 years old.

In 2015 Matt created a movement therapy experience for senior citizens called Connecting With Balance, and was asked to present his class at the 2016 National Creative Aging Conference in Washington DC. Most recently Matt was a presenter at the 2017 HOT (Higher Order Thinking) Schools Annual Education Conference in Hartford, Connecticut, speaking to 200 educators about “Commitment to Creativity.”

Matt will be forever grateful to his ʻohana, his mentors and guides. He honors his life by honoring his past. His work is simply a reflection of the community that raised him.

Annalisa Enrile

Annalisa Enrile

Clinical Associate Professor, USC Suzanne Dworak-Peck School of Social Work

close

Marley Dias

#1000BlackGirlBooks

Marley Dias is the 12-year-old social activist behind #1000BlackGirlBooks, an international movement to collect and donate children's books that feature Black girls as the lead character. With the help of her mother's foundation, GrassROOTS Community Foundation, Marley launched the #1000BlackGirlBooks drive in November of 2015, leveraging the power of social media to reach a larger audience. The goal was to collect 1,000 books featuring Black female protagonists by February 2016. The story went viral and was picked up by media outlets around the world as well as bloggers, schools, youth-focused organizations and thousands of individuals who wanted to participate in the project. 

In addition to features in major media outlets such as Elle, The New York Times, Wall Street Journal and People, (to name a few), the initiative quickly gained support from literary partners including Barnes & Noble, My Very Own Library, Scholastic, and Putnam Books, which have donated books and funds to the cause. Well-known authors and artists including Jacqueline Woodson and Rita Garcia have contributed books as well.

In light of the campaign's huge success, Marley has appeared on Ellen (where she received a laptop and a $10,000 contribution from Shutterfly), The Nightly Show With Larry Wilmore (where she received the show's first ever "Golden Hunnit/Keep It 100" award), CBS This Morning and Charlie Rose. In addition, Marley was honored at BET's Black Girls Rock! with a M.A.D. (Making a Difference) Award. In September of 2016, Marley began her role as Editor in Residence at Elle.com where she interviewed Ava DuVerney, Misty Copeland, and Hillary Clinton. Marley has spoken at the White House's United State of Women Summit, The InBound Conference and United Nation's Girl Up Summit.

Marley has most recently starred in Walt Disney World's Spring 2017 campaign on YouTube and social media, #DisneyEarlySpring. Marley Dias announced in February of 2017 that she will be penning a book with Scholastic scheduled to launch January 2018. Marley currently resides in New Jersey with her mother and father.

close

Kamuela Enos

Maʻo Organic Farms

Born and raised in Wai’anae, Kamuela comes from a family of cultural practitioners and farmers committed to sustainable agriculture. A vocal advocate for innovative educational approaches that serve all learners, Kamuela has turned his challenged secondary education experiences into a successful post-secondary academic career. Kamuela has an undergraduate degree in Hawaiian Studies and a M.A in Urban and Regional Planning from the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa.

close

Annalisa Enrile

Clinical Associate Professor, USC Suzanne Dworak-Peck School of Social Work

ANNALISA ENRILE, a Clinical Associate Professor at the USC Suzanne Dworak-Peck School of Social Work, is one of the few Filipina PhDs in social work, having chosen the field as a way to bring to light important social issues in the Filipino-American community, the fastest-growing Asian immigrant population. She frequently speaks out against sex trafficking, anti-militarization and exploitative migrant labor. A voice for equity and global justice, the clinical associate professor has been recognized as one of the 100 Most Influential Filipinas in the World (FWN Global 100) for her efforts to stop violence against women. She has worked with students, communities and academic partners to create social change through innovation and collaboration. 

Enrile leads the Philippines immersion program at USC and developed the experiential learning opportunity as a more tangible means to study and chronicle human rights violations. Her goal is to help students understand how social work theory is put into practice on a global scale using hands-on skills that transfer to their work in the United States.

Enrile is active in community organizations, including serving on several anti-trafficking task forces, and is on the board of the Mariposa Center for Change, an organization that serves women and children of color. She consults with organizations such as the Coalition to Abolish Slavery and Trafficking (CAST), YWCA Greater Los Angeles, and Search to Involve Pilipino Americans (SIPA). 

Enrile’s awards and distinctions include Global 100 Award, Filipina Women's Network (2013) Hutto Patterson Foundation Award for Distinguished Faculty, USC School of Social Work Jane Addams Faculty Award, and the USC School of Social Work V-Day Foundation Award.

close

Jen Faigel

CommonWealth Kitchen

Jen Faigel is a co-founder of the former CropCircle Kitchen, now CommonWealth Kitchen, and stepped in as Executive Director in 2014. Jen is responsible for setting organizational strategy, raising funds, wrangling staff and businesses, developing and managing strategic partnerships, and generally managing the chaos. Jen's background is in real estate and community economic development. She was the lead real estate consultant for the $15 million Pearl project, which is now home to CWK's flagship kitchen operation. In her career, Jen has developed more than 400 affordable homes and over 225,000 SF of commercial real estate - worth over $200m - as a means to create jobs and economic opportunity. Her motto in life is: "If you can't ride two horses at the same time, then you shouldn't be in the circus!" Jen's all-time favorite food is white clam pizza from Pepe's in New Haven. 

close

Kamele Hattori

Performer

Cheyenne "Kamele" Kameleonalani Kealiʻihoʻoneaina Hattori is currently a 9th grader at Hālau Kū Mana New Century Public Charter School in Makiki. She and her family live in ʻEwa on the west side of Oʻahu. Kamele loves to read, draw, and dance, but during any one of those activities you will often find her… singing! Broadway, alternative, J-pop… she loves it all. Kamele is very grateful for the opportunity to sing at the iHuddle conference and would like to mahalo everyone at Liliʻuokalani Trust  for inviting her to participate. 

close

Meredith Ferguson

TMI Strategy

Meredith's passion for creativity and innovation leads her to challenge traditional thinking and deliver the very best work for TMI's clients. Her career has spanned both client and agency roles. Prior to joining TMI, Meredith served as Vice President of Strategic Initiatives at Northlich. There, Meredith spearheaded the ILostABet.org, YourChemistry.org, and GiveThemTen.org strategies, as well as led client work for Sam's Club, White House Black Market, and the Cleveland Clinic Foundation. She has proudly served as a judge for the Positive Change Effie Awards and the D&AD Impact Awards. Meredith is a graduate of Vanderbilt Law School where she was a founding member of the Vanderbilt Child & Family Law Clinic and later served as a board member for Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA). When not striving to bake the perfect chocolate chip cookie, Meredith can be found watching a musical or play and exploring every nook and cranny of New York City with her husband and two girls.

Shawna Kuehu

Shawna Kuehu

Girls' Basketball Programs Head Coach, Punahou School

close

Vicky Holt Takamine

PAʻI Foundation

Vicky Holt Takamine graduated from Kamehameha Schools and received her BA & MA in Dance Ethnology from the University of Hawai'i. She graduated as kumu hula (master teacher of Hawaiian dance) from Maiki Aiu Lake in 1975, and established her hālau hula (school of Hawaiian dance), Pua Ali‘i ‘Ilima, two years later. In 1997 she co-founded ‘Īlio‘ulaokalani Coalition, a coalition of Native Hawaiian artists and cultural practitioners to advocate and protect Native Hawaiian rights. She established PA‘I Foundation in 2001 to protect and preserve Native Hawaiian cultural traditions and the natural and cultural resources of Hawai’i for future generations. She is the executive director of PA’I Foundation.  

 

close

James Koshiba

Organizer, Hui Aloha

James is a volunteer organizer with Hui Aloha, a regular gathering for people who want to build lives and communities rooted in aloha – filled with greater presence, grace, harmony, and purpose. Each gathering features an inspiring speaker, performer, or storyteller; a mini-workshop on skills and knowledge related to aloha; and island music and food. He is also a public policy researcher and consultant, who has a deep interest in homelessness, stemming from the experience of his great-grandfather as a homeless youth in Hawaii. To ground his work on this issue, James pitched a tent and spent a week in the Kakaako homeless camp in the summer of 2015. In the years since, he has spent time regularly on the street with houseless folks across Oahu, learning about camps and shelters, interactions with police and the criminal justice system, social services, emergency shelters, and the stories of how people became houseless.

James was born and raised in Hawaii and earned a BA from Brown University and a Masters in Public Policy from Harvard. He returned home in 2002 to start a public policy research and consulting firm, 3Point Consulting. In 2008, he co-founded the nonprofit Kanu Hawaii, which focused on community outreach and organizing around issues of sustainability. Kanu built a membership of nearly 15,000 people, and organized campaigns like an annual Eat Local Challenge, Live Aloha Campaign, and Energy Conservation Month. After five years at Kanu, James returned to consulting, hoping to address homelessness in some way.

close

Shawna Kuehu

Girls' Basketball Programs Head Coach, Punahou School

Shawna Kuehu is a three-time girls' basketball high school state champion with Punahou School and two-time player of the year. She graduated from the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa with a bachelor’s degree in economics, and helped lead the Rainbow Wahine to a Big West regular season championship in 2015. She is a two-time recipient of the Ah Chew Goo award for basketball excellence through dedication, determination and perseverance; and the Jack Bonham Female Award for exemplifying athletic excellence, academic achievement, public service, leadership and character. 

Shawna is currently the Punahou girls’ basketball programs head coach, as well as a trainer for PCA-Hawaii leading workshops all over the island. 

A licensed boat captain, Shawna enjoys her time out in the water. Away from basketball, boating, and workshops, Shawna enjoys time with her family and five-year-old daughter Kaiona. Basketball, the ocean and boats have always been her passion.

Tina Lifford

Tina Lifford

Award-winning actress, author and Founder of The Inner Fitness Project

close

Keoni Lee

ʻŌiwi TV

Co-Founder of ʻŌiwi TV, a Hawaiian social enterprise that leverages the power of media to tell and share stories of the modern Hawaiian experience. ʻŌiwi TV produces top-quality documentaries, news and multimedia content from a uniquely Hawaiian perspective. Keoni’s latest documentary, Mele Murals, is currently airing on PBS stations in the United States and internationally on Al Jazeera’s Witness documentary series. 

Keoni is active in the broader community, sitting on numerous non-profit boards including being the Board Chair of Hālau Kū Māna New Century Public Charter School and the Treasurer of MAʻO Organic Farms. He is currently a Fellow in the Hawaii Leadership Forum’s Omidyar Fellows program and a past Fellow in the First Nations Futures Program. 

close

Tina Lifford

Award-winning actress, author and Founder of The Inner Fitness Project

Playing more than 100 characters on the big screen over the past 20 years, Tina Lifford’s multi-faceted career has left an imprint on audiences worldwide. In addition to currently starring on hit shows, Queen Sugar airing on OWN and ABC’s hit show Scandal, the veteran Hollywood actress is also a published author, recognized playwright and CEO of The Inner Fitness Project. The drive that propels her forward is in her desire to inspire women from all walks of life to invest in their physical and emotional well-being and take action on their dreams.

Tina teaches and motivates through her workshop The Power of Self, Self, Self, speaking engagements, and The Inner Fitness Project - a business and personal development network birthed out of the need to create a movement focused on instilling the power of Inner Fitness, and showing that it is of equal importance if not more so than physical fitness. With an emphasis on encouraging individuals to deepen their relationship with the self, she helps her audience take full responsibility for their lives in order to free themselves. Inner Fitness motivates women to see each day as an opportunity to feel less stressed, more fulfilled and fabulous within.

Tina is also the gifted playwright of The Circle, a stage play about how seven diverse women navigate the choppy waters of life. As an author she has published two books: The Little Book of Big Lies... and Truths that Set You Free and The 14 Practices of Inner Health and Wellbeing for Building and Maintaining Emotional and Spiritual Strength. Both books are her prescription for taking a look inside and reconstructing how women see themselves and their lives.

Dedicating the last 15 years to personal development, Tina is a graduate of the University of Santa Monica’s Master’s Program in Spiritual Psychology and became a licensed spiritual practitioner from the Coaches Training Institute in 2007. 

close

Ipolani Maʻe

Peer Coach, DHHS Transition Age Youth

Ipo is originally from the island of Molokaʻi. She transitioned out of the foster care system in 2007 and has since traveled the world educating and empowering young people affected by foster care, mental health, the juvenile justice system, and young people who identify as LGBTQ+.

Ipo currently works as a lead peer coach for Humboldt County DHHS Transition Age Youth (TAY). In her role, Ipo uses her life experiences to mentor and empower her current staff, work community and at-risk youth. Ipo hopes to one day run a sustainable community for both former and current foster youth, with a focus on rewiring trauma through positive youth development, with an emphasis on cultural practices.

Julia Ormond

Julia Ormond

Actress, & Founder of Alliance to Stop Slavery and End Trafficking (ASSET)

close

Nirvan Mullick

Imagination.org

Nirvan Mullick is an award winning filmmaker, speaker, and movement maker. Nirvan's short film Caine's Arcade became a viral phenomenon in 2012, receiving over 10 million views, changing the life of a 9-year-old boy, and sparking a global movement of creative play with cardboard. Inspired by the response to Caine's Arcade, Nirvan founded the Imagination.org, a non-profit that works to foster creativity and entrepreneurship in kids worldwide. Since 2012, Imagination's Global #CardboardChallenge has engaged over 750,000 kids in 70 countries in creative play and STEAM, and was named a Champion of the Ashoka/Lego Foundation Re-Imagine Learning Challenge. With over 120 "Imagination Chapters" in 14 countries, the impact continues to grow. Nirvan continues to make films and creative work, and speaks around the world about the critical need to foster the creativity of every child and the potential of every moment to have an impact. 

close

Maya Nitzberg

The Possible Project

Maya has always been passionate about working with youth and helping to close the opportunity gap. Maya’s history has included developing curriculum for enrichment programs and leading and participating on teams to create and implement programs for schools, summer camps, and community organizations. Maya has helped launch and manage an afterschool program in Somerville for a K-8 school and taught English using experiential learning in Seoul, South Korea for two years.

Maya graduated from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst with a major in Psychology. While attending university, she acted as youth leader representing the United States at the 2008 annual Global Conference for Youth Entrepreneurship and Sustainability (YES, Inc.) in Alexandria, Egypt. Aside from her commitment to economic mobility, women issues and social innovation, she is an avid photographer, travel and outdoor enthusiast, and currently working on mastering her cooking skills.

close

Julia Ormond

Actress, & Founder of Alliance to Stop Slavery and End Trafficking (ASSET)

Actress and human rights activist Julia Ormond is the Founder and President of the Alliance to Stop Slavery and End Trafficking (ASSET). ASSET was the source, co-sponsor and organizer of the game-changing global legislation, the California Transparency in Supply Chains Act (TISC CA) which, thanks to movement and the Social Responsible Investment communities’ support, was passed by Governor Schwarzenegger in 2010 and came into law in 2012.

ASSET collaborated with Unseen UK to include and upgrade TISC in the Modern Slavery Act of 2015. ASSET works to identify and advance systemic solutions and funding to end slavery and empower public engagement, with an emphasis on improving the impact of corporate transparency through innovation and policy. ASSET is currently working on a data-driven, neutral transparency consumer tech interface. 

As the UN's first Goodwill Ambassador against Trafficking and Slavery, Julia has traveled the world assessing solutions and challenges and has appeared as an expert witness before the U.S. Congress, the UK House of Lords, and globally for the United Nations.

close

Yasemin Ozumerzifon

Gibney Dance

A native of Istanbul, Turkey, Yasemin enjoys her roles as an administrator, educator, and facilitator. After beginning her dance and psychology training in her hometown, she received a four-year, full-tuition scholarship to attend Connecticut College, where she continued her studies. To combine her two passions, she completed an M.A. at Columbia University in Developmental Psychology, with a focus on creativity and human development. Yasemin has also participated in a Guggenheim Museum study as a Research Assistant to evaluate its "Learning Through Art" program. 

As Senior Community Action and Company Manager at Gibney Dance, Yasemin administers programs that use movement to address gender-based violence including movement workshops for intimate partner violence survivors; teen dating violence prevention assemblies for public middle and high school students; ongoing trainings, workshops and resources for artists and mental health professionals that provide support for their arts and social justice projects; and global community action residencies that share Gibney Dance's arts and social justice model and practices internationally. 

close

Mark Patterson

Hawaii Youth Correctional Facility, Administrator

Mark is the current Administrator of the Hawaii Youth Correctional Facility and former Warden of the Women’s Community Correctional Center. He is known for his work in Trauma Informed Care within a Correctional Environment. He is an advocate for creating pu’uhonua or places of sanctuary throughout the criminal justice system, to heal children and women who have suffered as a result of trauma experiences. “Mai Nana ‘ino’ino, No Hewa O Kanaka, Aka E Huikala, A Ma’ema’e No.”

In May, Mark received the 2017 Governor’s Award for State Manager of the Year.  

close

Jeff Peterson

Musician

Born on the Island of Maui, two-time Grammy Award nominee and eight-time Nā Hōkū Hanohano Award winner Jeff Peterson grew up on the slopes of Haleakala where he was introduced to the rich heritage of Hawaiian music by his father, a paniolo, or Hawaiian cowboy, on the Haleakala Ranch.

As a performer, Jeff has had the honor to work with a wide range of artists and groups including Eric Clapton, Nathan Aweau, James Galway, Brian Stokes Mitchell, Aaron Neville, Boz Scaggs, the Honolulu Symphony, Hawaii Opera Theatre, Amy Hanaiali’i Gilliom, The Matt Catingub Orchestra of Hawaii, jazz bassist Rufus Reid, shakuhachi master Riley Lee, the acclaimed string quartet Ethel, and with many other artists in the fields of Hawaiian, classical, and jazz music. His release “Mamo” is a duo with Nathan Aweau.  He has four recordings with Riley Lee: “Maui Morning”, “Bamboo Slack Key”,  “Haiku”, and “Haleakala”. He also released seven solo guitar recordings featuring his slack key artistry, “O’ahu”,  “Slack Key Travels”, “Maui On My Mind”, “Kahealani”, “Slack Key Jazz”, “The Artistry of Jeff Peterson”, and “Pure Slack Key”. Wayne Harada from the Honolulu Advertiser reacted to hearing the CDs by writing: “Add the Peterson name to the top 10 list of slack key giants”, “His manner is impeccable, his style exquisite: the CD is perfection”, “Brilliant . . . Peterson raises the bar a few notches in both slack key and jazz with this bright and exceptional release”.  He is also featured as a performer and arranger on the 2008 and 2009 Grammy Nominated recordings “Aumakua” and “Friends and Family of Hawaii” by Amy Hanaiali’i.  His latest soundtrack and film Wahi Pana, Songs of Place, was recognized as the instrumental album of the year in 2017 at the Nā Hōkū Hanohano Awards. 

He has traveled to Europe, South America, Asia, Australia, Africa, India, and across the United Sates to perform at a variety of venues from Symphony Space in New York City to the National Folk Festival in Canberra, Australia. He recently appeared on the NPR program A Prairie Home Companion had the honor of performing for the Dalai Lama.  He performs regularly at Michel’s Restaurant in the Colony Surf Hotel in Waikiki in addition to a variety of other venues throughout Hawaii and abroad in both solo and group settings. In addition to performing, he taught the guitar at the University of Hawaii for several years running the guitar program. He achieved a milestone in Hawaiian music at the 47th Annual Grammy Awards on February 13th, 2005, when a recording on Palm Records featuring Jeff and other island artists, “Slack Key Guitar Volume 2”, won the first ever Grammy Award for best Hawaiian recording.  His solo recording “Maui On My Mind” was nominated for a Grammy in 2011.  Five of his songs were featured in the film The Descendants starring George Clooney.

close

Dawn Reese

The Wooden Floor

Dawn S. Reese has leveraged over 25 years of business and nonprofit management experience to be a life-changer for low-income youth and help propel The Wooden Floor forward. Dawn’s unique blend of talent and experience working in business, arts, education, and technology adds to the mission-driven, business-minded focus of The Wooden Floor. During Dawn’s eight-year tenure, she was promoted from General Manager and Chief Financial Officer to Executive Director and Co-CEO in 2012, and in 2016 she was promoted to Chief Executive Officer. She has created organizational clarity focusing on aligning priorities with delivering impressive programs, increasing visibility, and driving results for the $3.2M organization. Dawn led the efforts to take The Wooden Floor’s model national and signed their first licensed partner in Washington, DC in November 2015 and recently announced plans to expand in Santa Ana to serve 100 more students in 2017. Dawn received the 2016 Center for Leadership Award for Innovation from California State University Fullerton and the 2015 Difference Makers Award for Small Nonprofit Person of the Year from the Santa Ana Chamber of Commerce. She has been nominated by the Orange County Business Journal for the Innovator of the Year Award (2017, 2016), the Women in Business Award (2017, 2016, 2015), and was a finalist for the CFO of the Year Award (2014). Dawn serves on the Board of Directors for Orange County Music and Dance, and OneOC where she is also the Chairperson for the Nonprofit Advisory Council (2017-2019). She also serves on the Board of Advisors for the Center for Leadership - Mihaylo College of Business and Economics at California State University, Fullerton and advisory committees for DifferenceMakersOC, Institute for Influential Community Impact, and Orange County Business Council’s Latino Education Attainment Committee. Dawn is a coach, mentor, consultant, and national conference presenter on the topics of strategic planning, board governance, leadership development, and youth development, as well as college access.

Dawn began the first 10 years of her career with The Oaktree Consulting Group, a management consulting firm specializing in CEO Coaching for the high technology industry, and this is where she learned the best practices of business strategies and corporate governance. Dawn received her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from California State University Long Beach and she lives in Huntington Beach with her husband.

close

Jane Reisman

ORS Impact

Jane Reisman, Ph.D., advises on social impact by drawing on three decades of leadership at the intersection of strategy and evaluation. She continues to affiliate with ORS Impact, the strategy and evaluation firm she founded and led for more than 25 years. Under her leadership, ORS Impact engaged with many of the world’s leading organizations in social and environmental impact arenas and created a set of innovative resources related to measurement, learning, evaluation, and strategic planning. She is currently immersed in impact measurement and management for impact investing as an advisor to the Rockefeller Foundation and the Global Impact Investing Network. She believes that private capital will be an essential part of the solution for achieving the SDGs and tackling the world’s most pressing challenges.

Jane and husband Jay have happily launched their twenty-something son and daughter and still keep laughter around the house with their spirited dogs. Jane and Jay enjoy travelling and bicycling. Jane also can be found in yoga and mosaic studios.

close

David Roberts

Singularity University

David Roberts is regarded as one of the world's top experts on disruptive innovation and exponentially advancing technology. His passion is to help transform the lives of a billion suffering people in the world through disruptive innovation.

David served as Vice President of Singularity University and two-time Director (and alum) of the Graduate Studies Program. He is an award winning CEO and serial entrepreneur, and has started ventures backed with over $100 million of investment from Kleiner Perkins, Vinod Khosla, Cisco, Oracle, Accenture, In-Q-Tel, and others.

He is the recipient of numerous awards and medals and has led the development of some of the most complex, state-of-the art systems ever built, to include satellites, drones, and fusion centers. He also worked as an Investment Banker in the Mergers & Acquisitions Group at Goldman Sachs Headquarters. He received his B.S. in Computer Science & Engineering from M.I.T. as a Distinguished Graduate, and majored in Artificial Intelligence and Bio-Computer Engineering. He holds an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School.

David is Chairman at HaloDrop, a revolutionary global drone services company, Chairman at 1QBit, the world first software company for quantum computers, and is a formal adviser to Made-In Space, responsible for manufacturing the first object in Space with a 3D printer on the Space Station.

Harvard, Stanford, and Berkeley Business schools have all written and taught case studies on David's leadership, management, and decision making. He has been featured on the cover of the Wall Street Journal, and in USA Today, Fortune Magazine, The New York Times, Business Week, CNN, and dozens of others. His startups have received many awards to include Internet World Net Rising Stars, Red Herring Catch, top 50 Private Companies in the World, Red Herring Top100 Private Companies in the World, USA Today Tech Reviews Best Picks, Internet Outlook Investors Choice Award, Enterprise Outlook Investors Choice, Best of the Web from PC World, and Apple Computer Premier Systems Integrator Award.

His fascination with technology began in fourth grade after building a hovering electric drone, to carry his younger sister to the bus stop, powered by what was formerly his mother's vacuum cleaner, and fortunately limited by the length of an electric power cord.

close

Andrea Sreshta

Co-founder of LuminAID

Andrea Sreshta is a co-founder of LuminAID, a company dedicated to innovative renewable energy solutions for humanitarian aid and outdoor recreation. The LuminAID light has been sold to individuals and organizations in more than 70 countries. Outreach projects with NGO partners have put more than 40,000 donated lights on-the-ground for use in charitable projects around the world. Andrea and her business partner, Anna Stork, are the inventors of LuminAID's patented solar inflatable light technology. LuminAID was featured on ABC's Shark Tank in 2015, received offers from all five Sharks, and made a deal with Mark Cuban, the company's first investor. Andrea holds a B.A. from Yale University, a Master's in Architecture from Columbia University, and an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.