Agustina is the founder of Unplastify, an ocean adventure to explore the misuse of plastic. This initiative is not only a transatlantic journey, but also a collective movement to take action against one of the greatest problems of our planet. She is a strong advocate of circular economy in New York, having launched the Circular Economy Lab and conducted several workshops. She also works as a sustainability consultant specialized in developing triple bottom line strategies and circular economy systems for public and private sector organizations in Latin America and the U.S. For the last years, she led Sure We Can -first as President and then Executive Director-, a sustainability hub in Brooklyn that diverts over 10 million cans and bottles a year from landfills, while empowering over 500 low-income families.
Angela M. Mills, MD is the J. E. Beaumont Professor and Chair of the Department of Emergency Medicine at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons. She attended Temple University Medical School where she graduated with Alpha Omega Alpha honors. Dr. Mills is a graduate and former Chief Resident of the Emergency Medicine residency program at the University of Pennsylvania. She became a faculty member immediately thereafter at Penn in 2003 and advanced academically being promoted to Professor of Emergency Medicine in 2017. At Penn, Dr. Mills served initially as Medical Director and then as the Vice Chair of Clinical Operations. She joined Columbia at the end of January as the inaugural Chair of the newly formed Department of Emergency Medicine. Dr. Mills has maintained an active research career where she has focused on the evaluation, treatment and management of abdominal pain in the emergency department setting, emergency diagnostic imaging, and clinical operations.
Antoinette Bumekpor is turning her tumultuous healing journey into poetry that broadens the narrative of medicine. As a Columbia University Poetry MFA candidate, Antoinette explores concepts like what a scar would speak if it had a mouth, or how a tumor would court a woman. Also, in sharing complicated personal truths she challenges the ubiquity of silence around black female bodies and how they are viewed and handled in science and medicine. Giving voice is an act of courage. Bearing witness is an act of courage. And it is through the act of storytelling that transformation can occur. Antoinette was born on the island of Jamaica and raised on the island of New York. She holds a B.A. from Cornell University, is a poet, leadership coach, educator, and world traveler.
Anuka King is a senior at Barnard College majoring in Environmental Science and minoring in Mathematical Science, graduating in May 2018. She will be performing Bharatanatyam, a traditional classical dance from South India that uses primarily eyes and hand gestures to communicate emotions, thoughts and narratives. Anuka has been learning Bharatanatyam since she was 5 years old. She did her arangetram or debut performance in Chennai in July 2006, with Late Guru Adyar K. Lakshman, and for the past several years has been training under Gurus Shobana Bhalchandra and Nithyakalyani Vaidyanathan. She has given solo performances at the Queen Sirikit Garden Opening for Her Excellency The Queen of Thailand in 2004, the BIMSTEC function in Bangkok in 2005, the Singapore Indian Fine Arts Society in 2010, Indian Cultural Center-Bangkok in 2012, and at Annual Music and Dance Festivals in Chennai, India every year since 2007.
Arnaud Brohé, PhD, is CEO of CO2logic Inc. and an international expert in the field of climate policies and carbon management. Arnaud has authored many publications in academic and professional journals or reviews. His book ‘Carbon Markets’, for which Lord Nicholas Stern wrote the foreword, was winner of the Choice Outstanding Academic Titles of 2010 award. His latest book, The Handbook of Carbon Accounting was released in 2017 by Routledge. Arnaud is a regular speaker on these issues. Arnaud holds degrees in environment (PhD/MSc), finance (MSc/BSc) and international relations (MA) from the Free University of Brussels (ULB). At CO2logic, Arnaud has managed more than 50 consulting projects for prestigious public and private clients. Next to his consulting career, Arnaud is an adjunct professor in carbon accounting in the MSc Climate Change, Management & Finance at Imperial College London.
Researcher & Student
Ashley Wright worked as an editorial makeup artist and creative director for several years before pursuing higher education. Upon her return to academia, she pursued research involving attractiveness and facial features specifically in implicit bias. Ashley is now a junior at Columbia University and plans to pursue a graduate degree in social psychology and continue her research into facial perception and ethnic plastic surgery.
Chloe Russell Kent
Researcher & Student
Chloe Russell Kent is a writer, editor and journalist whose work has appeared in Playboy, Saveur, Hazlitt, McSweeney’s, USA TODAY, The Jerusalem Post, and Bustle, among other publications. She is a current Nonfiction MFA candidate at Columbia University.
Dancer & Choreographer
Choreographer Claudia Schreier has been commissioned by organizations including Vail Dance Festival, New York Choreographic Institute, and Joffrey Winning Works and has upcoming premieres for Ballet Hispánico at VDF and Dance Theatre of Harlem. Ms. Schreier is the Artistic Director of Claudia Schreier & Company, which since 2015 has presented full-evening performances of her choreography featuring dancers from New York City Ballet, American Ballet Theatre and other leading companies, and collaborations with award-winning composers and musicians. The Company made its Joyce Theater debut at the 2017 Ballet Festival. Ms. Schreier serves as Ballet Master and Rehearsal/Production Associate to Damian Woetzel and has contributed to programs at Jazz at Lincoln Center, New York City Center, Vail Dance Festival, and the White House, as well as the 2017 Kennedy Center Honors tribute to Carmen de Lavallade.
Poet, Essayist & Editor
Cyree Jarelle Johnson is a poet, essayist, and editor living in New York City. They are a Poetry Editor at The Deaf Poets Society and a candidate for an MFA in Poetry from Columbia University. Their work has appeared most recently in The New York Times and Boston Review. They have given speeches and lectures at The White House, The Whitney Museum of American Art, The University of Pennsylvania, Tufts University, and Mother Bethel AME Church, among other venues.
Ellie Dupler is a first-year student at Columbia Law School, where she focuses on human and constitutional rights issues in the U.S. and abroad. Prior to coming to Columbia, Ellie served a one-year term as a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant in Bosnia-Herzegovina, where she taught classes on a vast range of social and political issues to students throughout the Republika Srpska. In 2016, Ellie graduated from Yale University, where she was named a Harry S. Truman Scholar for her commitment to public service and awarded the QuestBridge National College Match Scholarship. While at Yale, Ellie worked and conducted global health and human rights research in Uganda, Ghana, Zambia, Nepal, Jordan, and Chile. Ellie was born and raised in the 500-person town of Thompsonville, MI, and it remains her favorite place that she's been.
Art Crime Professor
As America’s only full-time professor of art crime, I study the damage done to humanity’s shared heritage through looting, theft, and the deliberate destruction of art. I have discussed art crime topics in many venues, including The New York Times, CNN, NPR, and the Freakonomics podcast. In 2017- 18, I co-curated an exhibit of art made by detainees at Guantánamo. My book, Possession: The Curious History of Private Collectors (Yale University Press) was named an NPR Best Book of 2016.
Artist & Coder
Ethan Edwards is an artist and programmer currently based in New York City. He has a background in Philosophy, Film, and Computer Science and is completing an MFA in Sound Art at Columbia University’s School of the Arts. Edwards seeks to create subtle, complex artworks in multiple media which fully make use of emerging technology through computer programming. His work explores traditional aesthetic themes through interactive and generative structures using new media including smartphones, laptops, augmented reality, and virtual reality. He has shown his work in gallery settings and performance venues in New York and East Asia, and also distributes most of his work through free online channels.
Activist & Survivor
Joel Davis is the Director of the International Campaign to Stop Rape & Gender Violence in Conflict, the first ever global collaboration of Nobel Laureates, NGOs, and Experts working to end sexual violence in conflict. He is the founding Executive Director of Youth to End Sexual Violence and served as a Youth Ambassador for the UN Special Representative on Sexual Violence in Conflict. He has been nominated for the Nobel Prize and currently attends Columbia University in the City of New York.
Dr. Kaihan Krippendorff is an expert on business strategy, growth, creativity and innovation. He is a top-choice keynote speaker, author, and consultant on the subjects, with a passion for helping people and organizations reach their full potential by helping them move away from traditional linear business models to develop agile strategies and innovation capabilities for the accelerating digital world. Kaihan started his career as a consultant at McKinsey and Company. Since then he has written four business books, most recently Outthink the Competition (John Wiley & Sons) (with a fifth book, The Employee Innovator: Driving Innovation From Within set to be published in early 2019 by Columbia University Press), founded growth strategy and innovation consulting firm Outthinker and established himself as a sought-after strategic advisor to a growing roster of leading businesses and corporations.
Kamari Carter is a Performer, Producer, Sound Designer, and Sound Artist hailing from Los Angeles, California. He first discovered his love for adding strange sounds to moving image during his undergraduate at California Institute of the Arts while studying under Ajay Kapur, Jordan Hochenbaum, and Owen Vallis. Throughout his Career his work has seen the light of day in such venues as Automata Arts, MoMA New York, and Issue Project Room just to name a few. Today Kamari lives in New York and is currently working to complete his Masters at Columbia University in “Sound Art.”
Student and Former Professional Ballerina
Katarina Stephan was born with persistent hyperplastic primary vitreous, a congenital anomaly of the eye which ultimately led to the surgical removal of her left eye. Today, she has no vision in this eye and wears a prosthesis for cosmetic purposes. Two years ago, she trained with the Salzburg Ballet Company, a professional ballet company in Austria. Shortly after, she returned to America and worked as a teaching assistant in cardiothoracic surgery at Stanford University School of Medicine for the Cardiothoracic Surgical Skills Internship. She is currently majoring in Neuroscience and Behavior as a premedical student at Columbia University in the City of New York. She enjoys spending her free time as an Emergency Medical Technician with Columbia University Emergency Medical Services (CU-EMS) and providing user interface for visual prostheses that have the capacity to restore vision to the blind. Katarina dreams of becoming a one-eyed surgeon.
Composer, arranger, producer, vocalist, pianist and accordionist Magda Giannikou was born in Athens, Greece in the quiet coastal province of Voula. After 15 years of education on classical piano, she decided to widen her musical spectrum by studying film score, jazz improvisation, arranging and music production at Berklee College of Music in Boston, USA. Founder and leader of the world music group “Banda Magda”, she has toured in 5 continents and 22 countries, performing in discerning venues and festivals such as WOMAD, Atlanta Jazz Festival, Vancouver Jazz Festival, L’Olympia, Jazz à Vienne, Canarias Jazz, Apollo Hammersmith, The Kennedy Center, Kathmandu Jazz Festival and many more. Magda has also collaborated on several projects with two-time Grammy Award winning group Snarky Puppy.
Composer & Educator
Matthew Ricketts is a Canadian composer currently based in New York City. A graduate of McGill and Columbia University, Matthew’s principal mentors include Brian Cherney, Chris Paul Harman, John Rea, George Lewis and Fred Lerdahl. His music has been featured on festivals and concerts in Banff, Montreal, Toronto, Vancouver, Chicago, New York, Austin, Aspen, Tanglewood, Boston, Suzhou (China) and Paris. Matthew is the recipient of 8 prizes in the SOCAN Foundation’s Awards for Young Composers, a 2013 ASCAP Morton Gould Young Composer Award, the 2015 Salvatore Martirano Memorial Composition Award, the 2016 Mivos/Kanter Prize, the 2016 Jacob Druckman Prize from the Aspen Music Festival and the 2016 Lili Boulanger Memorial Fund Prize.
Student & Instructor
Royi is currently a student at Columbia University. Before joining Columbia, Royi served as a Head Instructor in the Counter Terrorism School of the Israel Defense Forces. Royi has also led the training of the Ladakh Expedition (2014), which currently holds the world record for the youngest expedition to summit Parangala Pass (18,372 feet).
Executive Editor of the Associated Press
Sally Buzbee is the Executive Editor and Senior Vice President of the Associated Press, taking that role in 2017 after serving for six years as the news organization’s Washington bureau chief. Buzbee joined the company in 1988 as a reporter in Kansas and also worked as a reporter in Los Angeles and Washington. In 1996 she became assistant bureau chief for news in Washington where she oversaw in-depth foreign affairs and national security coverage. For five years beginning in November 2004, Buzbee served as AP’s Middle East regional editor based in Cairo. In that position she led AP’s news coverage across media formats during the Iraq war, and managed personnel, logistics, budgets and security for AP’s Middle East region. Buzbee holds a journalism degree from the University of Kansas and a Master of Business Administration from Georgetown University. She has two daughters, Emma, 18, and Margaret, 17.
Growing up in a rural area near the world’s largest automobile plant, Saskia Krafft witnessed the forces that transform raw materials into consumer products. The land and the people that live in it are solely dedicated to agriculture and commercial use. Every aspect of this landscape is used in the service of exploitation and profit. As the daughter of a technical draftsman and a theater dressmaker, she was introduced early on to the unique relationship between drawing, construction, and fabrication. She has traveled extensively throughout Europe, the Middle East, and the United States during her studies abroad. Her art projects originate from observations and drawings of different sites as a means of locating herself within an architectural, material, natural, and global landscape. Saskia Krafft is currently a Fellow at the LeRoy Neiman Center for Print Studies and a German Fulbright Scholar at Columbia University.
Figure Skater and Educator
Sharon Cohen founded Figure Skating in Harlem (FSH) in 1997, seven years after meeting a group of East Harlem girls who were eager to learn how to ice skate. Having grown up in the world of competitive skating, Sharon jumped at the opportunity to create the first and only organization for girls of color that combines the power of education with access to grace and discipline of figure skating to promote holistic girls' development. Named the first 2014 CNN Hero, an honor that pays tribute to “everyday people who are changing the world,” Sharon speaks frequently about girls' empowerment. She has been a guest speaker at United Nations/US Chamber of Commerce Women’s Empowerment Principles Forum, the Beyond Innovation Summit, Brown University’s Pembroke Center, and presented at the 15th International Olympic Committee World Conference on Sport for All in Lima, Peru.