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Conference Speakers

Diana NyadDiana Nyad successfully fulfilled her lifelong dream of completing the 110-mile swim from Cuba to Florida on September 2, 2013, at the age of 64. Considered one of the greatest long-distance swimmers in the world, her world records include circling Manhattan Island and crossing the 102.5 miles between the Bahamas and Florida. She is also a popular sportscaster, author, and public speaker. diananyad.com

Tony PorterTony Porter is cofounder of A Call to Men: The Next Generation of Manhood. An educator, activist, and lecturer, Porter has been working in social justice for more than 20 years and is nationally and internationally recognized for his effort to end men’s violence against women and has given a popular TED Talk on the subject. acalltomen.com

India.ArieIndia.Arie went from “singing under a tree in the park” to the Grammy Awards stage in five years. Since 2001, India.Arie has sold 10 million albums and won four Grammy awards from a total of 21 nominations. soulbird.com

Kevin RuddKevin Rudd served as Australia’s 26th Prime Minister from 2007 to 2010, then as Foreign Minister from 2010 to 2012, before returning to the Prime Ministership in 2013. He is currently engaged in a range of international political, environment, and social challenges. An International Advisory Panel member of Chatham House, he is co-author of the UN Secretary General’s High Level Panel on Global Sustainability report, “Resilient People, Resilient Planet” and chairs the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on Fragile States.

Stephanie CoontzStephanie Coontz is the author of many books on women and families, including The Way We Really Are: Coming to Terms with America's Changing Families and The Social Origins of Private Life: A History of American Families. She teaches history and family studies at The Evergreen State College in Olympia, Washington, and is Director of Research and Public Education for the Council on Contemporary Families. She has appeared on popular television shows, news outlets, and documentaries, and received multiple awards for her work. stephaniecoontz.com

Ted TurnerTed Turner, chairman of Turner Enterprises, Inc., has won recognition for his entrepreneurial acumen, vision, leadership, and his unprecedented philanthropy throughout his career. As a media executive, Turner built a portfolio of unrivaled cable television news and entertainment brands and businesses, including CNN. As chairman of the Turner Foundation, Inc., Turner supports environmental and sustainable energy efforts. He has pledged one billion dollars to the United Nations Foundation (UNF). UNF has identified four core priorities: women and population; children’s health; the environment; and peace and security. Turner also launched the Nuclear Threat Initiative (NTI), a foundation working to close the gap between the threat from nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons and the global response. tedturner.com

Mallika DuttMallika Dutt is president and chief executive officer of Breakthrough, an international human rights organization that addresses violence against women, sexuality and HIV/AIDS, racial justice, and immigrant rights. mallikadutt.com

Zach WahlsZach Wahls is the co-founder of Scouts for Equality, the national campaign to end discrimination in the Boy Scouts of America. He is the author of the national bestseller My Two Moms: Lessons of Love, Strength and What Makes a Family. He has appeared on The Daily Show, The Ellen DeGeneres Show, and The Late Show.

Shabana Basij-RasikhShabana Basij-Rasikh is cofounder and president of The School of Leadership, Afghanistan (SOLA), a nonprofit that helps young Afghan women access education worldwide and leadership positions back home. Born and raised in Kabul, she attended Middlebury College in Vermont, graduating magna cum laude in International Studies and Women and Gender Studies in 2011. Shabana now focuses her attention on unlocking the economic potential of Afghanistan by improving its educational system to produce exceptional leaders, especially women. sola-afghanistan.org

AdyashantiAdyashanti, author of The Way of Liberation, Falling into Grace, True Meditation, and The End of Your World, is an American-born spiritual teacher devoted to serving the awakening of all beings. His teachings are an open invitation to stop, inquire, and recognize what is true and liberating at the core of existence. Based in California, Adyashanti teaches throughout North America and internationally. adyashanti.org

Pat MitchellPat Mitchell has had a long and distinguished career as an independent producer documenting women on the frontlines of war, poverty, and peacemaking around the world. She has been a top executive at CNN Productions, Time, Inc. Television, the Paley Center for Media, and the first woman to lead PBS. In her current position as president and chief executive officer of the Paley Center for Media, Mitchell has broken new ground for women, including convening TEDWomen in partnership with the TED organization. paleycenter.org

Michael KimmelMichael S. Kimmel is University Distinguished Professor of Sociology and Gender Studies at SUNY at Stony Brook. Among the leading researchers on men and masculinity, he is the author of Guyland, Manhood in America, and Angry White Men. He is the founding editor of Men and Masculinities, a scholarly journal, and recipient of a 2013 MacArthur Foundation grant to establish the Center for the Study of Men and Masculinities at Stony Brook University. He lectures extensively at corporations and on campuses nationally and internationally, and consults with governments to engage men to support gender equality. michaelkimmel.com/

Azure AntoinetteAzure Antoinette is a poet, spoken word artist, speaker, educator, and youth and arts advocate. One of Forbes 100 Most Powerful Women in the World and the founder of Aalchemik Press and STUDIO:alchemy, an arts-in-education program, she is the author of BitterSweet, Commissioned, Commissioned: the Back Story and the upcoming For the Sake of Brevity. azureantoinette.com

Jennifer BuffettJennifer Buffett is president and cochair of the NoVo Foundation, a philanthropic organization focused on supporting and empowering girls and women worldwide as primary agents of change, with the goal of shifting society away from cultures based on domination and exploitation toward partnership and collaboration. Jennifer Buffett and her husband, Peter Buffett, are recipients of the Clinton Global Citizen Award for their “visionary leadership and sustainable, scalable work in solving pressing global challenges.” novofoundation.org

 

Peter BuffettPeter Buffett has an acclaimed career that spans nearly 30 years as a professional musician, Emmy Award-winning composer, philanthropist, and author of the New York Times best-seller Life Is What You Make Itpeterbuffett.com

 

Barbara AnnisBarbara Annis is the founder and chief executive officer of Barbara Annis & Associates, Inc., author of Cracking the Code on Gender Equality, Leadership and the Sexes, and coauthor of Gender Intelligence. For over 25 years, Annis has advocated the value and practice ofiInclusive leadership through cultural and gender intelligence in over 60 Fortune 500 companies and governments and organizations worldwide. baainc.com

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.org

Carlos Andrés GómezCarlos Andrés Gómez is an award-winning poet, actor, speaker, and writer from New York City. He is the author of the coming-of-age memoir Man Up: Reimagining Modern Manhood. Nominated for the Pushcart Prize, he costarred in Spike Lee’s movie Inside Man, and appeared in the sixth season of HBO’s Russell Simmons Presents Def Poetry and in the third season of TV One’s Verses and Flow. He has headlined festivals all over the world and lectured and performed at universities. carloslive.com

Esther ArmahEsther Armah is an award-winning radio host, international journalist, political commentator, public speaker, and playwright specializing in the politics and practice of emotionality and how it shapes policy and politics, culture, and race. She is a regular commentator for MSNBC, appearing on Melissa Harris Perry, Up with Chris Hayes, Up with Steve Kornacki, All in with Chris Hayes, and MSNBC Live. The creator of Centric Productions media consultancy and the program series Emotional Justice Unplugged. She is the playwright of Forgive Me?, Can I Be Me?, and Saviour?

Cynthia BrixCynthia Brix, Reverend, is an interfaith minister and cofounder of Gender Reconciliation International, which collaborates with the Desmond and Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation to implement Gender Reconciliation widely. Formerly campus minister at Colorado University, Cynthia produced a DVD, Cultivating Women’s Spiritual Mastery, and is coauthor of Women Healing Women and Divine Duality. genderreconciliationinternational.org

William KeepinWilliam Keepin, PhD, is cofounder of Satyana Institute and Gender Reconciliation International, which has conducted 80 programs in eight countries for reconciliation between women and men. A physicist and whistleblower in nuclear science, he trained in spiritual disciplines and transpersonal psychology.  His books include Divine Duality and Song of the Earthgenderreconciliationinternational.org

Zanele KhumaloZanele Khumalo, MA, is a consultant to Gender Reconciliation International in Cape Town, South Africa. She is a trained facilitator with experience in diversity management, intercultural communication, and alternatives to violence. Zanele is on the staff of the Center for Conflict Resolution. genderreconciliationinternational.org

John Tsungme GuyJohn Tsungme Guy, MA, is a consultant to Gender Reconciliation International and Satyana Institute. A psychotherapist specializing in group facilitation and addictions counseling, John is also a meditation instructor who serves on the team of intensive meditation retreat leaders for graduate students at Naropa University. genderreconciliationinternational.org

Sarah UrechVinny Ferraro, senior trainer at Mindful Schools and a cast member of MTV’s If You Really Knew Me, is a long-time mindfulness practitioner and instructor and a nationally recognized leader in designing and implementing interventions for at-risk adolescents. mindfulschools.org

Pam DunnPam Dunn  is a teacher trainer and leader for Challenge Day, Be Present, Inc. (BPI), and provides training and consulting to youth & family service agencies and offers wide nonprofit organizational support.

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

Sarah PeterSarah Peter is an artist who lives in New York City. She has given generous and visionary support to the Omega Women’s Leadership Center, the Modern Women’s Fund at the Museum of Modern Art, and the Odwar Fund in Uganda. At the heart of Sarah Peter’s philanthropic giving is the goal of acknowledging individual women’s contributions and helping to improve the lives of women. estateofmind.com

Courtney E. MartinCourtney E. Martin is the editor emeritus at Feministing.com, founding director of the Solutions Journalism Network, and partner at Valenti Martin Media, a social media strategy firm. Martin's work has appeared widely across top national print and television outlets. She is the recipient of the Elie Wiesel Prize in Ethics and the author of Do It Anyway and Perfect Girls, Starving Daughterscourtneyemartin.com

Hudson River Playback TheatreHudson River Playback Theatre (HRPT), a nonprofit organization based in New Paltz, New York, creates dynamic, improvisational theatre based on true stories told by audience members. In recent years, HRPT has performed in London, Frankfurt, Boston, Washington, DC, and New York; both in schools with its No More Bullying! program, as well as for organizations, prisons, conferences, and immigrant communities. HRPT founder Jo Salas is a cofounder of Playback Theatre, which was created in 1975 and is currently practiced in over 65 countries worldwide. hudsonriverplayback.org

Kavitha RaoKavitha Rao is the co-founder of Common Fire which helps to create accessible and sustainable intentional communities as a means of cultural transformation. A mother, a yoga teacher, a facilitator, and an organizer, she has worked with grassroots organizations around the world. commonfire.org