Speakers - 2018 Speakers will be announced on December 15, 2017
2017 Brian HallowDreamz Henry - Krumping Is Language
Creator of Brooklyn Buck dance form based on Krumping
Brian Henry, also know as HallowDreamz, is a Brooklyn Buck/Krump dancer from Bed-Stuy Brooklyn NY who was known for his audition on SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE (season 8). He calls his personal Krump style BROOKLYN BUCK. Brian started Krumping in 2004. Inspired by Mijo and Tight Eyez "The creators", Brian has been pushing the Krump movement in N.Y.C. since 2008, when he joined E.S.K. (East Street Kingdom, a branch of the group STREET KINGDOM founded by Tight Eyez. Brian has taught at EXPG, Broadway Dance Center, PMT, and many more. Recently featured in Madonna's music video "Bitch, I'm Madonna and A$Ap Ferg & Liam Bailey's "Villain". Brian also has experience in Ballet, Modern, contemporary, and African. Which makes him one of the most sought after Krump teachers. Click HERE to watch Brian's talk.
2017 Kristin Smedley - How I Learned To See Through The Eyes Of My Sons
Rare Eye Disease Advocate and Non-For-Profit Executive
Kristin Smedley is an award winning nonprofit leader, rare eye disease advocate, speaker, and up and coming author – but she never planned on any of that. Kristin originally planned to be third grade "Teacher of the Year". But her personal path to greatness took an unexpected turn when two of her three children were diagnosed as blind. She quickly had to learn all of the tools of blindness and get them into the hands of her sons. She had to build a team of experts that would help her navigate this path. Kristin’s two blind sons, Michael and Mitchell, are thriving. The systems Kristin has put in place for her boys have worked to great success. Her boys’ achievements include baseball championships on “sighted” neighborhood teams, distinguished honors in “regular” public school, and finalists in International Braille competitions. Kristin and her family are role models and her motto, “Life is funny, sort of” is evident in her positive and uplifting attitude. Click HERE to watch Kristin's talk.
2017 Mari Carmen Pizarro - When Did We Stop Loving Our Bodies?
Best Selling Author, Nutritional Consultant, Peak Performance Coach
Mari Carmen founded Streamlined Health, a company dedicated to serving leaders who, like her, suffered from health ailments that prevented them from being at the top of their game. Streamlined Health’s science based approach to fully engaging people’s capacity and skill grew out of over 30 years of experience in the arena of high performance management and coaching. Mari Carmen Pizarro is dedicated to teaching leaders how to feel continuously energized, look their best and exude confidence that is critical to their sense of well being and inspirational to those around them. Mari is an Integrative Health Coach and a Certified Personal Trainer who holds a master’s in business and is a world-class Transformational and Executive Coach. She is also a board-certified member of the American Association of Drugless Practitioners. Click HERE to watch Mari's talk.
2017 Rich Hollman - How Improv Training Creates Compassionate Behavior
Improvisor, Actor, Teacher, Activist
Rich is an actor, improviser, teacher, writer, musician and activist living in New York City. He earned his BA in psychology from the University of Pennsylvania in 1999 and his MFA in acting from New School University in 2004. As an actor, Rich has performed regionally and in many Off-Broadway venues including The Cherry Lane Theater, The Lucille Lortel, Playwrights Horizons, La Mama Etc., and Playhouse on Park in West Hartford, CT. He's also appeared in tv roles including; Law and Order, Guiding Light, All My Children and As The World Turns. Additionally, his film work has been seen in the New York Television Festival where he also won a Best Writing award for the original pilot, 'Actualized'. Rich teaches acting and improv at the New School, The People's Improv Theater (The PIT), where he is currently on the faculty, the Buckley School and The Pelham Film Institute.he is the creator of Care Packages for the Homeless, a charity bringing essentials to NYC's homeless. Click HERE to watch Rich's talk.
2017 Wendy Smith - No Time To Waste: Mental Health Literacy Can Be Taught In Grade School
Consultant, Speaker, Author
Wendy has worked in the nonprofit industry for nearly 30 years, currently as a consultant, speaker and author. She was an early advocate of applying a business perspective to the nonprofit operating model and worked at every level from service provider to executive to board member. She is also a researcher and author in the field of philanthropy. Her best-selling book, "Give a Little: How Your Small Donations Can Transform Our World," was released in 2009 and describes the magnitude and power of affordable giving by everyday Americans. The book's release coincided with the explosion of online donating, and she has since consulted to numerous start-up nonprofits, social entrepreneurs and organizations focused on raising affordable donations from individuals online. Wendy is also involved in the field of mental health as a consumer, caregiver and former board member of her local chapter of the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI). Click HERE to watch Wendy's talk.
2017 Kevin Pearce - A Brain Injury Is Like A Fingerprint, No Two Are Alike
Former Pro snowboarder, Recovering Traumatic Brain Injury Survivor
Kevin Pearce, former professional snowboarder, is an inspirational public speaker and co-founder of LoveYourBrain LLC. He is an advocate for the prevention of brain injuries and the promotion of a brain healthy lifestyle. Kevin catapulted onto the professional snowboarding stage in 2005 at age 18, rising above others in his division and quickly becoming the athlete to watch in the ever-evolving sport. In the 2009 Winter X Games, Kevin brought home the Silver Medal for Superpipe, making him a strong contender to win Gold in the 2010 Vancouver Olympics. On December 31, 2009, while training for the Olympic trials in Park City, Utah, Kevin suffered a severe traumatic brain injury. Although he was wearing a helmet at the time, the injury left Kevin in critical condition and in a medically induced coma that would change his life forever. Post-accident, Kevin has become a passionate advocate for the prevention of brain injuries and the promotion of a brain healthy lifestyle for all people.Click HERE to watch Kevin's talk.
2017 Gail Tolstoi-Miller - Unconscious Bias: Stereotypical Hiring Practices In Corporate America
Award Winning Entrepreneur, Staffing Strategist, Career Coach, Author
Inspirational. Motivational. And 100%, totally real. CEO Gail Tolstoi-Miller is a Jersey girl turned award-winning career coach, staffing strategist and author. Whether she’s advising executives on their broken hiring processes or setting job candidates straight about their blind spots, Gail doesn’t pull any punches. With over 20 years industry experience and over 15,000 job placements, her insider perspective will shock and surprise you. Gail’s companies include Consultnetworx, which trains companies on hiring best practices and recruitment strategies; and Careernetworx, which provides coaching solutions to candidates looking for a Happy Career and Happy Life (tm). Gail’s first book, Networking Karma, won IndieReader’s 2016 Discover Award for best business book of 2016. Gail is an NYU graduate, with a BA in Sociology. Click HERE to watch Gail's talk.
2017 Jo Becker - Transforming The Lives Of Children
Child Rights Advocate
Jo Becker is a child rights activist with over 20 years of experience working for human rights and social justice. As the children’s rights advocacy director for Human Rights Watch, she has been on the forefront of international efforts to end the use of child soldiers, child labor, and to protect other vulnerable children. She has investigated children’s rights in Burma, Ghana, India, Indonesia, Morocco, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Uganda, and the United States. She is the author of an award-winning book, Campaigning for Justice: Human Rights Advocacy in Practice, and teaches human rights at Columbia University. Click HERE to watch Jo's talk.