batteryboy - @batteryboymusic
Minneapolis-based batteryboy combines social awareness and personal revelation to create “music to deal with everything else.” Founded as a solo project by Cobey Rouse in 2011, the group now includes multi-instrumentalist Eric Carranza, cellist Emily Dantuma, bassist Ray Ringer and Cloud Cult violinist Shannon Frid-Rubin. Their lush sound full of strings and Carranza’s Eno-esque atmosphere give Rouse’s emotionally charged lyrics a fitting place to come to life and hit home.
Dr. David Odde
Trained as a chemical engineer, David Odde studies the molecular mechanics of cell division and migration, applying state-of-the-art mathematical modeling to fight a great nemesis: cancer. His team’s groundbreaking progress in fighting cancer is no small feat. Continued innovation is as critical as ever. In many respects, the camera on your smartphone is more technologically advanced than the most sophisticated equipment Odde uses in his research. Only now, in the 21st century, is oncology beginning to embrace mathematical and computational modeling. Why not capitalize on our progress in personal digital technology to make a significant impact on the world?
CEO/Founder | ASIYA Modest Active Wear
At the age of 6, Fatimah Hussein fled war-torn Somalia to Minneapolis with her family. Becoming a licensed graduate social worker, Fatimah has dedicated her work to serving her community, specifically with Muslim girls through sports. In 2008, she established the nonprofit Girls Initiative in Recreation and Leisurely Sports (G.I.R.L.S.) to provide resources for Muslim girls who want to be active. Yet, cultural norms deterred many from participating. Hijabs, the head covering worn in public by some Muslim women, are not designed for sports, ultimately inhibiting fast-paced activity. Fatimah took on this challenge and, with the help of the community, developed the sport hijab in 2015. This innovation is allowing (and encouraging) Muslim women of all ages to play sports and gain a new level of confidence through comfort and health - without compromising their cultural beliefs.
Kaleena Miller Dance
Tap Dance Crew
Kaleena Miller Dance is a Minneapolis based dance company, devoted to performing, teaching and carrying on the legacy of American Tap Dance. Since 2015, the group has performed at Barbette’s Bastille Day, been in residence at The FAIR School, and presented exciting and boundary pushing works at the Southern Theater including HERE NOW and SHIFT.
Lana Yarosh, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, University of Minnesota Department of Computer Science and Engineering
Think about a computer you use every day. Like the one in your hand, pocket or bag that gives you a notification every few minutes. The laptop you stare at for 4050+ hours a week. How do you use it? What does it do for your relationships? This is Lana Yarosh’s world in the study of Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) which researches the design and use of computer technology by people – observing how we interact with it, and designing technologies that let us connect through it in more novel ways. Lana’s efforts are leading to a new technological design that will help us connect with others in far more natural ways than we’re accustomed. It’s a new system to enhance social relationships and connections in ways we never thought possible with our computers.
The work of May Lee-Yang continues to reinforce her belief that art is a “safe way for people to enter into conversations about issues impacting our world.” She has long engaged underrepresented groups through her plays by providing free childcare at shows and accessible tickets. Her plays break language barriers between her actors and the audience, and she has a passion for engaging the Hmong Elder Center to participate in theater. Her Hmong-language version of Confessions of a Lazy Hmong Woman, truly engaged a multigenerational audience into the experience, using one of the most truthful genres — comedy. Born in a refugee camp in Thailand, she came to Minnesota as a child and has become one of the most recognized Hmong writers and performance artists in the Twin Cities. Using her keen sense of humor and experiences as a Hmong playwright, LeeYang will challenge all of us to take cultural narratives out of the box to let individuality shine through.
Open Eye Theater
All summer long Open Eye Figure Theatre performs puppet shows in backyards, front yards, and parks throughout the Twin Cities, bringing communities together with original familyfriendly theatre. Since 2003, the Driveway Tour has reached more than 50,000 people. Audience Services Manager Peter Rusk will discuss this popular community program.
President & CEO, The Minneapolis Foundation
Civil servant, businessperson, activist, writer, Minnesota Twitter poet – R.T. Rybak is the author of Pothole Confidential, a book about his 12 years as mayor of Minneapolis, yet his legacy is just beginning. He now leads one of our region’s most prominent philanthropies as President and CEO of The Minneapolis Foundation. With his understanding of this city and its people, Rybak is hoping to unlock the power we all bring to the table. Knowing that we, the people, are the greatest asset.
He will illustrate how our current environment is the ideal time for incredible progress, including closing the achievement gap in education, reducing disparities across the board, and moving Minneapolis forward.
Director, Media & Innovation Lab Fresh Energy
Rob Davis is Director of the Center for Pollinators in Energy at Fresh Energy, engaging stakeholders and advocating to maximize the benefits of America’s transition to clean energy.
Venus de Mars
Transgender founder and leader of the glam-punk/trans- band Venus de Mars & All The Pretty Horses. Along with her wife Lynette Reini-Grandell, Venus is also the subject of the award winning rock-doc “Venus of Mars”  by Emily Goldberg.