Director of K-12 Consulting and Professional Development at the Center for the Study of Race and Equity in Education at the University of Pennsylvania and the Director of the Race Institute for K-12 Educators.
Ali Michael, Ph.D., is the Director of K-12 Consulting and Professional Development at the Center for the Study of Race and Equity in Education at the University of Pennsylvania and the Director of the Race Institute for K-12 Educators. She is the author of Raising Race Questions: Whiteness, Inquiry and Education (2015, Teachers College Press): a book designed to support teachers in the long term and personal process of understanding the role that race plays in their lives and in their classrooms. She is also co-editor of Everyday White People Confront Racial and Social Injustice: 15 Stories (2015, Stylus Press). She and her partner, Michael, live in Philadelphia and consider questions of race and education on a daily basis in the raising of their two children.
Autumn Angelettie is a senior at Cheltenham High School, and has spent her four years finding opportunities to create positive change through writing, performance, and activism. She is the author of Neighborhood Blue, an award winning monologue touching on issues of race and community policing. The monologue was specially selected for performance at the African-American History Museum in Washington, D.C., and was part of the Philly Young Playwrights Monologue Festival in April. She prides herself in her position as the Overseeing Director of the CHS Women's Student Union—the gender equality advocacy club at the high school. She thanks this group and her co-leaders for being the catalysts for her activism and her pursuit of social justice as a career. Autumn will be attending Howard University in the fall and plans on continuing her activism in racial equality and intersectional feminism there.
Clean Water Activist
Christopher Swain was the first person in history to swim the entire lengths of the Columbia, Charles, Hudson, Mohawk, and Mystic Rivers, as well as Lake Champlain, the Gowanus Canal, Newtown Creek, and large sections of the Atlantic coast of the United States. As part of his mission to bring awareness to waterway pollution, Swain has stroked through water laced with arsenic, cyanide, dioxin, coal tar residue, radioactive waste, PCBs, neuro-toxic pesticides, trash, and raw sewage. Swain documents his swims through photographs, video, social media posts, stakeholder interviews, and the collection of scientific data. Since 1996, Swain has shared his message of clean water and universal human rights with cities, towns, nonprofit organizations, foundations, companies, indigenous peoples, government agencies, and over 80,000 K-12 students across North America. Stories about Swain's swims have received more than four billion media impressions worldwide.
Chief Executive Officer of 826 National
With more than twenty years of management and development experience at national nonprofit organizations, Gerald is a respected trainer and sought after speaker on topics of youth and education access. He is interviewed regularly on these topics and has appeared on NBC’s Nightly News, CNN’s Anderson Cooper’s 360, and The Michael Eric Dyson Show, as well as in articles in publications including the Huffington Post and Inc. Magazine. He has also served as an education expert for national marketing campaigns promoting creativity in and outside the classroom.
Dr. John Mohl teaches psychology at Cheltenham High School and Bucks County Community College in Newtown, Pennsylvania. His experimental research program investigates various facets of consciousness and phenomenology, including fantasy proneness, hypnosis and suggestibility, and anomalous experiences. He serves on the Executive Committee of the Society of Psychological Hypnosis of the American Psychological Association and the Program Committee of the Society of Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis. He has to his credit eight scholarly publications and over 20 professional conference presentations.
Writer, Director, Actorvist
KEITH A. WALLACE is a self-proclaimed 'actorvist.' As an actor he has appeared in JUNK: The Golden Age of Debt, Blueprints to Freedom, Movers + Shakers, Death of a Driver, Venus, In the Crowding Darkness, and more. Select directing credits include The Last Days of Judas Iscariot and The Brothers Size (Theatre Bay Area Award for Outstanding Production). His La Jolla Playhouse commissioned solo play, THE BITTER GAME, had a workshop premiere in the International WOW Festival in October 2015 and was restaged as a part of the 2016 La Jolla Playhouse season. Since, Keith has toured the show nationally at 2017 Under The Radar Festival at The Public Theater, Segerstrom Center for the Arts, The Skirball Cultural Center LA among others. Keith's writing credits have earned him semi-finalist status in the 2016 Sundance Theater Lab, the Eugene O’Neill Playwrights Conference, Powerhouse Theater Playwrights Fellowship and the New Dramatist Van Lier Playwrights Fellowship.
Senior Policy Advisor, Stoneleigh Foundation Fellow, Drexel University
Kevin Bethel served in the Philadelphia Police Department for 29 years; in his most recent role as Deputy Police Commissioner, he was responsible for Patrol Operations for the entire city. Although his primary responsibility was to ensure public safety, throughout his career he has been committed to improving the lives of the most vulnerable young people in our community. He has deliberately pursued work in the juvenile justice field, including serving on numerous national, statewide and local committees and advisory boards; regularly lecturing on school diversion and racial and ethnic disparities at the Center for Juvenile Justice Reform at Georgetown University; and serving as a faculty member for the International Association of Chiefs of Police Juvenile Justice Leadership Institute. His passion has always been and remains reforming the juvenile justice system.
Professor of Curatorial Studies, Moore College of Art and Creative Director of MythMedia Studios
Li is an art educator, mythologist and eco-activist who engages in social and artistic practice through multi-media projects and community-driven work. As a curator and multidisciplinary artist, Li employs strategies of media ecology and mythic design to challenge oppressive systems and cultivate community awareness of local and global issues. She has worked on art and social justice projects addressing representations of race, class, identity, environmental injustice and ecological crisis with the New Museum of Contemporary Art, International Center of Photography, AFROPUNK, Rock the Vote, Philadelphia Museum of Art, African-American Museum of Philadelphia, Mural Arts, the Germantown Historical Society, Scribe Video Center and The Leeway Foundation. Li is a proud graduate of Spelman College and holds an MA in Arts and Humanities Education from New York University and a MA/Ph.D. in Mythology and Depth Psychology from Pacifica Graduate Institute.
Student, Activist, Singer/Songwriter
Lia Hyman was recently awarded Activist of the Year by The Humane League’s Philadelphia office where she interns. Lia is active in various school-based activities such as Key Club, Best Buddies, Environmental Club, Women’s Student Union, and runs Track & Cross Country. She became the face of the Humane League’s ‘Subway Secrets’ campaign out of concern for the millions of chickens suffering the worst cruelties in the chain’s supply chain each year. Hyman led the charge for the campaign in securing more than 50,000 signatures ; her leadership resulted in Subway’s adoption of a new set of animal welfare policies and has inspired countless students to perform campaign actions on their own campuses nationwide. Lia plans a career in Environmental Science, but is first taking a gap year to travel the world.
Co-Founder of CAPP
Mr. Alloro is a leading expert in applying positive psychology, the scientific study of human wellbeing and flourishing. As a change-agent, he empowers people to build their psychological muscle & learn how they uniquely impact the world. Louis is one of the first 100 people in the world to earn a Master of Applied Positive Psychology from the University of Pennsylvania and holds a second Master degree in the Foundations of Education. His toolkit is stocked with the applied sciences of wellbeing, success, neurobiology, appreciative inquiry, biomimicry, multiple intelligences, systems theories, and mindfulness. He is a culture strategist in organizations and offers leadership and organizational development interventions and initiatives that move groups and systems of people to new heights in sustainable ways.
Co-founder, The Workshop School
MATTHEW RIGGAN is a Co-Founder of the Workshop School, a project-based high school within the School District of Philadelphia’s Innovation Network. As Executive Director of the school’s nonprofit arm, Matt directs research and development, designs and develops systems to support the school’s instructional model, and advocates locally and nationally for schools bringing project-based learning and authentic assessment to high-need communities. Prior to launching the Workshop, Matt was a Senior Researcher at the Consortium for Policy Research in Education, where his work focused on a variety of topics including organizational development, formative assessment, distributed leadership, and high school reform. He earned his Ph.D. in 2005 from the Penn Graduate School of Education, where he continues to serve as an Adjunct Assistant Professor.