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Conference Speakers

vandana shivaVandana Shiva, PhD, is a world-renowned environmental leader, eco-feminist, author, and thinker. Director of the Research Foundation on Science, Technology, and Ecology, she is a leader in the International Forum on Globalization, along with Ralph Nader and Jeremy Rifkin. Recipient of many awards, she also has served as an adviser to governments and NGOs. navdanya.org

 

van jonesVan Jones, a former advisor to President Obama and best-selling author of the definitive book on green jobs, The Green Collar Economy, is cohost of Crossfire on CNN and an award-winning pioneer in human rights and the clean energy economy. In 2009, Time magazine called him “one of the 100 most influential people in the world.” vanjones.net

 

jeremy rifkinJeremy Rifkin, president of the Foundation on Economic Trends, is an authority on economic sustainability. His books include The Third Industrial Revolution and The Empathic Civilizationfoet.org

 

elizabeth lesserElizabeth Lesser is cofounder of the Omega Institute and senior advisor on Omega’s board of directors. Author of The Seeker’s Guide and the New York Times best seller, Broken Open: How Difficult Times Can Help Us Grow, she is a frequent host on the Oprah Radio channel on Sirius/XM. In 2002, she initiated the Women & Power conference series and is cofounder of the Omega Women's Leadership Center. elizabethlesser.net 

 

david orrDavid W. Orr is a professor, founder of the Oberlin Project, and author of Ecological Literacy. oberlinproject.org

 

bob berkebileBob Berkebile, is an influential sustainable design architect and community planner, a founding principal of BNIM Architects, and a board member of the U.S. Green Building Council, the Nature Conservancy, and the Center for Global Community. bnim.com

 

Winona LaDuke is an internationally acclaimed author, orator and activist. A graduate of Harvard and Antioch Universities with advanced degrees in rural economic development, LaDuke has devoted her life to protecting the lands and life ways of Native communities. LaDuke is founder and Co-Director of Honor the Earth.

 

Bill McKibben, over the past three decades, has shaped public perception—and public action—on climate change, alternative energy, and the need for localized economies. An environmental activist, bestselling author, and "the planet's best green journalist" (TIME), McKibben is the founder of 350.org, the massive grassroots climate change initiative.

 

Xiuhtezcatl Martinez is the 13 year old indigenous environmental activist and youth director of Earth Guardians. He has organized many rallies, actions, demonstrations and events, giving his first speech at a climate change rally when he was six years old. He has become a plaintiff in lawsuits against Colorado and the federal government for not protecting the atmosphere.

 

Osprey Orielle Lake is the Co-Founder Executive Director of the Women’s Earth & Climate Action Network (WECAN). She is Founder and President of The Women's Earth and Climate Caucus (WECC) and works nationally and internationally to promote resilient communities and foster a post-carbon energy future, while also addressing societal transformation.

 

Devita Davison spearheads Detroit Kitchen Connect, a network of shared, commercial kitchen spaces city-wide that provides community resources and an array of industry-specific services to burgeoning food entrepreneurs.

 

skip backusRobert “Skip” Backus is chief executive officer of Omega and the visionary behind the Omega Center for Sustainable Living (OCSL). He helped lay the foundation for Omega’s environmental and conservation initiatives, including campus recycling and composting, sustainable purchasing and support of local agriculture, water conservation, and 100% sourcing of campus electricity from wind and solar technology.

David BollierDavid Bollier is an influential American activist, writer, and policy strategist who focuses on democratic culture, promoting citizen action and reclaiming the Commons. He is cofounder of the Commons Strategies Group and the author of Think Like a Commoner, Green Governance, and The Wealth of the Commons, among other books. bollier.org

Carla GoldsteinCarla Goldstein, JD, is Omega Institute’s chief external affairs officer and cofounder of the Omega Women's Leadership Center. An attorney with 25 years of experience in public interest advocacy, she has contributed to more than 100 city, state, and federal laws, and has worked extensively on issues related to women’s rights, poverty, public health, and social justice. eOmega.org/owlc

Michael Gayk earned an MFA in Jewelry and Metals from the University of Washington and an BFA in Metals Design from the College for Creative Studies. Michael’s current work is emblematic of tension within muscular structures and pivot points within the human body. Michael is currently the Chair of Education for ACM SIGGRAPH 2015. He is Assistant Professor of Metal/Digital Design and Fabrication at SUNY New Paltz. 

Jason Stern is co-founder and publisher at Luminary Publishing, which he launched in 1993, to "nourish and support the cultural, creative, and community life of the Hudson Valley". Jason publishes ;ChronogramUpstate House, and their respective websites, and custom publications for likeminded organizations. Jason is author of Learning to Be Human, and pens the monthly “Esteemed Reader” column in the Chronogram