The 2018 Summit Speakers will be available in early 2018. See the previous Summit's agenda, program, and speakers below.
Elizabeth Acevedo is the youngest child and only daughter of Dominican immigrants. She holds a BA in Performing Arts from the George Washington University and an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Maryland. With over fourteen years of performance experience, Acevedo has toured her poetry nationally and internationally. She is a National Poetry Slam Champion, Cave Canem Fellow, CantoMundo Fellow, and participant of the Callaloo Writer's Workshop.
She has two collections of poetry, Beastgirl & Other Origin Myths (YesYes Books, 2016) and winner of the 2016 Berkshire Prize, Medusa Reads La Negra’s Palm (Tupelo Press, forthcoming). The Poet X (HarperCollins, 2018) is her debut novel. She lives with her partner in Washington, DC.
Named as one of Time's "100 Most Influential People" and "Outstanding Chef" by the James Beard Foundation, José Andrés is an internationally-recognized culinary innovator, author, educator, television personality, humanitarian and chef/owner of ThinkFoodGroup. A pioneer of Spanish tapas in the United States, he is known for his avant-garde cuisine and his award-winning group of 27 restaurants throughout the country and beyond. His innovative minibar by José Andrés earned two Michelin stars in 2016. Andrés’ work has earned numerous awards including the 2015 National Humanities Medal, one of 12 distinguished recipients of the award from the National Endowment for the Humanities.
Melody Barnes is a Co-Founder and Principal of MBSquared Solutions LLC, a domestic strategy firm, and a senior fellow in presidential studies at the University of Virginia’s Miller Center. Ms. Barnes serves on the Board of Directors of Ventas, Inc., Booz Allen Hamilton Holding Corporation; the Marguerite Casey Foundation and Year Up. She also chairs the Aspen Institute Forum for Community Solutions and Opportunity Youth Incentive Fund.
Ms. Barnes was Assistant to the President and Director of the White House Domestic Policy Council from January 2009 until January 2012. Until July 2008, she was the Executive Vice President for Policy at the Center for American Progress, a progressive research institute and think tank. From December 1995 until March 2003, Ms. Barnes worked for Senator Edward M. Kennedy on the Senate Judiciary Committee; she served as his chief counsel from 1998 until she left the Committee in 2003.
Ms. Barnes received her bachelor’s degree with honors from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and received her law degree from the University of Michigan.
Arthur C. Brooks has been president of the American Enterprise Institute (AEI) since January 1, 2009. He is also the Beth and Ravenel Curry Scholar in Free Enterprise at AEI.
Before joining AEI, Dr. Brooks was the Louis A. Bantle Professor of Business and Government at Syracuse University, where he taught economics and social entrepreneurship. Before pursuing his work in academia and public policy, he spent 12 years as a classical musician in the United States and Spain.
Dr. Brooks is a contributing opinion writer for The New York Times and the bestselling author of 11 books on topics including the role of government, economic opportunity, happiness, and the morality of free enterprise. His latest book is the New York Times bestseller The Conservative Heart: How to Build a Fairer, Happier, and More Prosperous America (Broadside Books, 2015). He has also published dozens of academic journal articles and the textbook Social Entrepreneurship (Prentice Hall, 2008).
Dr. Brooks has a Ph.D. and an M.Phil. in policy analysis from the Pardee RAND Graduate School. He also holds an M.A. in economics from Florida Atlantic University and a B.A. in economics from Thomas Edison State College.
Dan Bryant is Senior Vice President for Global Public Policy and Government Affairs at Walmart, leading the company’s global public policy efforts and its government affairs activities in Washington, D.C. and internationally.
From 2012-2015, Dan was a partner at Covington & Burling where he chaired the Public Policy and Government Affairs Practice Group. Dan served from 2005 - 2012 as Senior Vice President for Global Public Policy and Government Affairs at PepsiCo, where he led the company’s worldwide government affairs team and oversaw its global public policy efforts.
Prior to joining PepsiCo, Dan served as Assistant Attorney General for Legal Policy and Assistant Attorney General for Legislative Affairs at the U.S. Department of Justice, having been unanimously confirmed by the U.S. Senate for both positions. In these posts, he was responsible for planning and coordinating implementation of major legal policy initiatives and advising the Attorney General on legal and policy matters. He also served as Counselor to the Attorney General. Dan received the Edmund Randolph Award, the highest award the U.S. Department of Justice confers on attorneys.
Prior to his service at the U.S. Justice Department, Dan was Majority Chief Counsel on the U.S. House of Representatives Judiciary Committee and also served on the U.S. Senate Government Affairs Committee, Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations.
Dan has taught law at George Washington University’s School of Law, Washington, D.C., and Columbia Law School, New York. He received his Bachelor and Juris Doctor degrees from American University, Washington, D.C., and his master’s degree from Oxford University (Keble College), England. Dan also attended La Universidad de Sevilla, in Spain. He serves on a variety of education-related non-profit boards. Dan and his wife Aerin live in the Washington, D.C. area and have four children.
Bill Bynum is chief executive officer of HOPE, a credit union (Hope Credit Union), loan fund (Hope Enterprise Corporation) and policy center (Hope Policy Institute) dedicated to advancing economic opportunity in the lower Mississippi Delta, one of America’s most impoverished regions. Since 1994 HOPE has provided financial services, leveraged resources, and shaped policies that have benefited more than 650,000 residents.
Bynum began his career by helping to establish Self-Help, a pioneer in the development finance industry, and later built nationally recognized programs at the North Carolina Rural Economic Development Center. Bill has advised Presidents Clinton, Bush and Obama on financial service matters, and served as chair of Treasury’s Community Development Advisory Board and the CFPB Consumer Advisory Board. He is a member of the US Partnership for Mobility from Poverty, funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. His current board service includes: NAACP Legal Defense Fund, Aspen Institute, Corporation for Enterprise Development, National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy, Fannie Mae Affordable Housing Advisory Council, the William Winter Institute for Racial Reconciliation and Millsaps College.
Bill is a recipient of the NFCDCU Annie Vamper Award, National Credit Union Foundation Herb Wegner Award, Opportunity Finance Network Ned Gramlich Award, E&Y/Kauffman Foundation National Entrepreneur of the Year, Aspen Global Leadership Network John P. McNulty Prize, and University of North Carolina Distinguished Alumnus Award.
Maureen Conway serves as Vice President for Policy Programs at the Aspen Institute and as Executive Director of the Institute’s Economic Opportunities Program (EOP). Ms. Conway founded EOP’s Workforce Strategies Initiative (AspenWSI) and has headed up workforce research at the Aspen Institute since 1999. Ms. Conway’s previous experience includes consulting for the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development in Paris and work for the U.S. Peace Corps, where she advised on the design, management, and evaluation of the organization’s economic development programs in Eastern Europe and the Former Soviet Union. Maureen has an M.B.A. from Columbia University, a Masters in Regional Planning from the University of North Carolina, and a B.A. in economics and mathematics from Holy Cross College.
After graduating from Williams College in 1986 with a bachelor's degree in religion, Mike lived and worked in Osaka, Japan as a teacher, copywriter, and bartender at his neighborhood pub. Upon returning to the United States, he began a 20-year career in the hospitality business, including owning and operating his own restaurant, The Broad Street Grill, in Falls Church, Virginia. Mike joined DC Central Kitchen (DCCK) in 2004. Drawing on his experiences in the restaurant business, Mike has spent significant time expanding the Kitchen's revenue-generating social enterprise initiatives. Under his leadership, DC Central Kitchen's Fresh Start Catering has expanded from traditional catering opportunities to include contracts to provide locally-sourced, scratched-cooked meals to schools across Washington, DC. DC Central Kitchen's Nutrition Lab facility, funded and launched under Mike's leadership, has allowed DCCK to take on more contracts, rapidly increase investments in purchasing from local farms, and improve production efficiency. Due to its many social services programs, the Kitchen now employs over 130 people, approximately 40 percent who are graduates of the Kitchen's nationally recognized Culinary Job Training Program. Social enterprise now accounts for nearly 65 percent of DCCK's total operating budget. Mike is a chair emeritus of the Restaurant Association Metropolitan Washington and a Board member for The Common Market in Philadelphia. He was an advisory board member for the Center for Health and the Global Environment at Harvard Medical School and currently sits on the advisory boards of DC Greens, Real Food for Kids and Catalyst Kitchens, and is a member of the Leadership Council of DC Hunger Solutions. The Kitchen has received numerous accolades under Mike's leadership, including the Mayor's Environmental Excellence Award; the Washington Business Journal's Green Business Award for Innovation; and the DC Chamber of Commerce 2012 Community Impact Award. Mike is a recipient of the 2010 Gelman, Rosenberg + Freedman EXCEL Award for excellence in chief executive leadership and the Bicentennial Medal from his alma mater, Williams College, the highest honor the college bestows on its alumni.
Elliot Gerson, executive vice president at the Aspen Institute, is responsible for its Policy Programs, its Public Programs and its relations with international partners. The Institute's more than 30 Policy Programs focus on both domestic and international issues. They provide neutral venues, do nonpartisan analysis, foster candid dialogue among leaders, advocate new policy and promote best practices. The Institute's public programs - including the Aspen Ideas Festival and many smaller programs across the country - open the Institute's doors to a broader audience and further both its educational goals and its hopes that thought will lead to action. The Institute has international partners in Europe, Asia and Latin America. Gerson also administers the US Rhodes Scholarships. He was a Rhodes Scholar, a US Supreme Court clerk, practiced law in government and privately, held executive positions in state and federal government and on a presidential campaign, and before Aspen was president of start-ups in health care and education, and of two leading national insurance and health-care companies.
Drew Greenblatt bought Marlin Steel in 1998 when it was a small maker of a commodity product. Since then, he has grown revenue eight fold and is currently expanding its factory floor space 53%. In the face of challenges to the global economy, Marlin Steel has invested over $5.3mil in robotics in a quest for quality and speed.
Today, Marlin Steel imports nothing and exports material handling baskets, wire forms and sheet metal fabrications to 39 countries including China, Taiwan, Canada, Mexico, Australia, & Japan. Worker Safety is critical. Marlin Steel crossed the 2,688 day safety milestone in April 2016. In addition, Marlin Steel has been recognized as a winner of the INC 5000 2012 & 2013 (fastest Growing Companies in the USA), the Inner City 100 Fastest Growing companies in the USA (2012), Regional Employer of the Year (2007) from Baltimore City & Baltimore County and Drew Greenblatt has been chosen as an International Business Leadership Award Winner from the World Trade Center Institute (2011).
Marlin’s secret sauce is Quality, Engineered Quick (“QEQ”). Twenty percent of Marlin’s employees are mechanical engineers who innovate to save clients’ money by improving throughput with engineered wire baskets and custom sheet metal fabrications. Marlin Steel’s engineers provide state-of-the-art, computer- driven stress analysis so clients have comfort knowing that their designs will withstand the rigors of their applications.
Greenblatt has testified to the US Senate and US Congress on topics including small business, taxation, regulations, trade policy, and techniques to grow the economy. Greenblatt has met with President Bush in the White House to discuss manufacturing policy. Advocating for a robust manufacturing sector, Greenblatt believes that factories provide great jobs and superb benefits – a way to grow our middle class with solid meaningful jobs.
Greenblatt serves as Chairman of the Small & Medium Manufacturers and Executive Board Member of the National Association of Manufacturers. Drew is also active as the Chairman Emeritus of the Board of the Regional Manufacturing Institute (www.Nextand the Co-Founder and Chairman Emeritus of the Board of the National Alliance for Jobs & Innovation (www.NAJI.org ).
He has a BA from Dickinson College and an MBA in Finance from the A.B. Freeman School of Business at Tulane University. He lives in Maryland with his wife and three sons.
Walter Isaacson is the president and CEO of the Aspen Institute, a nonpartisan educational and policy studies institute based in Washington, DC. He has been the chairman and CEO of CNN and the editor of TIME magazine.
Isaacson’s most recent book, The Innovators: How a Group of Hackers, Geniuses, and Geeks Created the Digital Revolution (2014) is a biographical tale of the people who invented the computer, Internet and the other great innovations of the digital age.
He is the author of Steve Jobs (2011), Einstein: His Life and Universe (2007), Benjamin Franklin: An American Life (2003), and Kissinger: A Biography (1992), and coauthor of The Wise Men: Six Friends and the World They Made (1986).
Isaacson was born on May 20, 1952, in New Orleans. He is a graduate of Harvard College and of Pembroke College of Oxford University, where he was a Rhodes Scholar. He began his career at The Sunday Times of London and then the New Orleans Times-Picayune. He joined TIME in 1978 and served as a political correspondent, national editor, and editor of digital media before becoming the magazine’s 14th editor in 1996. He became chairman and CEO of CNN in 2001, and then president and CEO of the Aspen Institute in 2003.
He is chair emeritus of Teach for America, which recruits recent college graduates to teach in underserved communities. From 2005-2007 he was the vice-chair of the Louisiana Recovery Authority, which oversaw the rebuilding after Hurricane Katrina. He was appointed by President Barack Obama and confirmed by the Senate to serve as the chairman of the Broadcasting Board of Governors, which runs Voice of America, Radio Free Europe, and other international broadcasts of the United States, a position he held from 2009 to 2012. He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and serves on the board of United Airlines, Tulane University, the New Orleans City Planning Commission, the New Orleans Tricentennial Commission, Bloomberg Philanthropies, the Society of American Historians, the Carnegie Institution for Science, and My Brother’s Keeper Alliance.
He has honorary degrees from Tufts University, Cooper Union, Franklin College in Switzerland, University of New Orleans, University of South Carolina, City University of New York (Hunter College), Pomona College, Lehigh University, Washington College, and Duke University.
Corby Kummer is a senior editor at The Atlantic, where he edits articles on politics and public affairs, and editor in chief of IDEAS: The Magazine of the Aspen Institute. He joined The Atlantic in 1981 and became established as a food writer through his work in the magazine. Kummer writes a monthly food column for The New Republic and is a restaurant critic for Boston Magazine and Atlanta Magazine. He is also a contributor to Vanity Fair, The New York Times, and Smithsonian and the author of the books The Joy of Coffee and The Pleasures of Slow Food. He is the winner of five James Beard Journalism Awards.
David Leonhardt is an Op-Ed columnist for The New York Times and associate editorial page editor.
His prior assignment was leading a group helping The Times’s executive editor to shape the future of the newsroom and news coverage. The group’s recommendations were released publicly in January 2017. David was previously the Washington bureau chief and the founding editor of The Upshot, a Times website covering politics, policy and other subjects.
In 2011, he received the Pulitzer Prize for commentary, for his columns on the financial crisis and its aftermath. As a staff writer for The Times Magazine, he won the Gerald Loeb Award in 2009 for the story, “Obamanomics.”
David appears frequently on television and radio, including on Charlie Rose, the PBS Newshour, the Colbert Report and NPR. He has served since 2011 on the jury of the Aspen Prize for Community College Excellence.
Before joining The Times as a business reporter in 1999, he worked for Business Week magazine and as a metro reporter at The Washington Post. He studied applied mathematics at Yale and is a third-generation native of New York.
Elisabeth Mason is the Founding Director of the Stanford Technology, Opportunity and Poverty Lab, the first lab dedicated to leveraging the data and technology revolution to create new, lasting, and low-cost solutions to poverty and inequality in the United States.
Elisabeth's career choices have purposefully been unconventional, but all share a commitment to transformative impact. She helped establish Shakira's international foundation, worked with Mother Teresa's sisters in a leper colony in India, and crafted children's rights reform with the leaders of a dozen Latin American nations before the age of 25, where she founded and ran Fundación Kukula, an agency serving street youth.
A native of East Harlem, Elisabeth was named "New Yorker of the Year" in 2015 for her groundbreaking work fighting poverty and her work was recognized as Top Ten in the World in Social Good by Fast Company.
Prior to joining Stanford, Elisabeth was Co-Founder and CEO of Single Stop, a national anti-poverty initiative which served close to 2 million families, drawing down nearly $4 billion in impact under her leadership. There she won two White House Social Innovation Awards. Elisabeth also helped develop a $1 billion, 10-year spend-down plan at Atlantic Philanthropies, served as a Managing Director for six years at the Robin Hood Foundation, and practiced law on Wall Street. Elisabeth holds a BA and MA from Harvard and a JD from Columbia.
Brandee McHale is president of the Citi Foundation and Director of Corporate Citizenship at Citi. She oversees the Citi Foundation's global grantmaking strategy and leads Citi's citizenship efforts, including volunteerism and environmental sustainability.
For over three decades, Brandee has dedicated her career to philanthropy and developing a forward-thinking portfolio of grant initiatives that connect low-income residents to onramps of economic opportunity and a secure financial future.
Brandee is a staunch advocate for youth empowerment. Under her leadership, the Citi Foundation launched Pathways to Progress in the United States, the largest single commitment in the Foundation's 20-year history. In February 2017, the Foundation announced it would expand the initiative globally with an additional $100 million investment to help prepare 500,000 young people for today’s competitive job market.
As the board chair of the Corporation for Enterprise Development (CFED) and a member on the board of directors of the Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC), Living Cities, and America's Promise Alliance, Brandee helps chart the direction of numerous efforts to create lasting change in communities across the country.
Jonathan Morduch is Professor of Public Policy and Economics at the Wagner Graduate School of Public Service at New York University. His research focuses on poverty and finance. Morduch is the author with Rachel Schneider of The Financial Diaries: How American Families Cope in a World of Uncertainty (Princeton 2017), and co-author of Portfolios of the Poor: How the World’s Poor Live on $2 a Day (Princeton 2009); The Economics of Microfinance (MIT Press 2010); and Economics (McGraw-Hill 2017, 2nd ed.), an introductory text. He is coeditor of Banking the World: Empirical Foundations of Financial Inclusion (MIT Press).
Morduch is a founder and Executive Director of the NYU Financial Access Initiative. He has taught on the Economics faculty at Harvard, and has held visiting positions at Stanford, Princeton, Hitotsubashi University and the University of Tokyo. Morduch received a BA from Brown and a Ph.D. in Economics from Harvard. He was awarded an honorary doctorate from the Free University of Brussels for his work on microfinance. In 2016-17, Morduch is the Roger W. Ferguson. Jr. and Annette L. Nazareth member at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton.
Anne Mosle is a vice president at the Aspen Institute and executive director of Ascend at the Aspen Institute. She is an innovative and inclusive leader in building pathways to opportunity for low-income children, women and families. With more than 20 years of experience in philanthropy, policy, and practice, Mosle is a noted expert on how those sectors can intersect to be a more powerful force for progress. She has been recognized as a Washingtonian of the Year, Ms. Magazine Woman to Watch, and Visionary Philanthropist.
Mosle founded and leads Ascend, a policy program of the Aspen Institute. Ascend serves as the national hub for breakthrough ideas and proven solutions that move low-income children and their parents towards educational success and economic security. Under Mosle’s leadership, Ascend has become a leading force in catalyzing a two-generation approach to breaking the cycle of poverty. She has launched two groundbreaking Ascend initiatives that have transformed the two-generation policy landscape into a game-changing approach for families. The first is the Ascend Fellowship, a national fellowship program that identifies and amplifies the impact of multi-sector leaders with "quantum leap" ideas to break the cycle of poverty. Mosle also launched the first national Two-Generation Innovation Fund focused on promising programs and policy innovations.
From its inception, Ascend at the Aspen Institute has embraced a commitment to racial equity, a gender lens and engaging the voices of families. Ascend’s policy expertise and cross-sector collaboration approach is well respected and has been highlighted in White House forums and hundreds of communities across the country.
Mosle is an active contributor to the Aspen Institute policy leadership team committed to tackling the issues of inequality and opportunity in the United States. She has authored and contributed to numerous publications, including the Shriver Report: A Woman’s Nation Pushes Back from the Brink; Two Generations, One Future; First Focus Big Ideas; and Top 10 for 2Gen Policy Ideas and Principles to Advance Two-Generation Efforts; and she is a regular contributor to the Huffington Post.
Prior to the Aspen Institute, Mosle served as a vice president and officer of the W.K. Kellogg Foundation (WKKF), where she was on the executive team and oversaw $140 million in investments annually. Mosle led the creation of WKKF’s Family Economic Security Portfolio and launch of their Mission-Driven Investing program. In addition, Mosle was responsible for the Civic and Philanthropic Portfolio and New Mexico place-based investments.
Mosle is recognized as an innovator in the women’s philanthropic movement. Beginning in 2000, she served as the president of the Washington Area Women’s Foundation, spearheading seven years of record growth and driving a national effort to elevate the role of women philanthropists in communities. She was also the lead architect of their nationally recognized grantmaking initiative, Stepping Stones, to build the financial independence of women and families.
Earlier in her career, Mosle served as senior vice president at the Center for Policy Alternatives, developing leadership and policy programs for state elected and community leaders. She has organized major summits at The White House and 10 Downing Street as well as numerous state and community forums.
Mosle currently serves on the Executive Governing Board of the American Public Human Services Association, National Trustees Council of America’s Promise, and Leadership Council of the Washington Area Women’s Foundation. She lives with her family in Washington, DC.
Stephen A. Patrick
Stephen Patrick became the Executive Director of the AFCS at the Aspen Institute in 2012. As VP and ED he oversees work that focuses on building the collective impact field, launching and implementing the Opportunity Youth Incentive Fund, while lifting up successful stories of civic engagement and community change. Prior to joining the Institute, Steve served as a Senior Program Officer at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation where he managed a portfolio of grants focused on supporting disconnected youth on pathways to and through postsecondary education, along with work focused on adult education populations and education for justice involved individuals. Steve has also served as a VP at the Daniels Fund, as Director of Youth and Emerging Initiatives at the New Mexico Community Foundation, and in 2008, served on the Obama Transition Committee focused on Social Innovation and Civil Society. He is the Co-Founder of Rocky Mountain Youth Corps, leads youth programs for the San Juan Pueblo Tribe, was a Rockefeller Foundation Next Generation Leadership Fellow, and was appointed by Governor Richardson to serve as the Co-Chair of the New Mexico Commission for Community Volunteerism (AmeriCorps). He lives on Bainbridge Island with his wife, Suzanne and sons, Jackson and Will.
José is Mission Asset Fund’s (MAF) founding CEO. Under his leadership and vision, he quickly built the organization into an award-winning nonprofit with innovative models for integrating financially excluded, low-income communities across the nation into the financial mainstream. He was named a 2016 MacArthur "Genius" Fellow for his creativity, accomplishments, and potential as a financial services innovator.
José is a visionary leader, highly regarded in the consumer finance field. In 2014, Governor Jerry Brown enacted legislation recognizing MAF's Lending Circles program, making California the first state to recognize credit-building and lending circles as forces for good.
José graduated from Princeton University's Woodrow Wilson School and the University of California at Davis.
As executive director of the Aspen Institute Financial Security Program (FSP), a leading national program dedicated to solving the most critical financial challenges facing America’s households and to shaping policies and financial products enabling all to save, invest, and own. Ida Rademacher combines a vision for creating deeply shared prosperity with a background in economic anthropology and policy research probing how changes in labor and financial markets shape household risk and decision-making. She has testified before Congress on financialinclusion subjects related to credit, savings, retirement and tax policy and is quoted often in a variety of news outlets including the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, and public radio’s Marketplace. Prior to joining the Aspen Institute, Ida served in research and leadership roles with the Corporation for Enterprise Development, the Center for Applied Behavioral and Evaluation Research at AED, and the Aspen Institute Economic Opportunities Program. She currently serves in advisory and board director roles for Duke University’s Common Cents Lab, the Pew Economic Mobility and Financial Security Project, The Financial Clinic and EARN. Ida is the first generation in her family to attend college. She pursued postgraduate studies in economic anthropology at the University of Melbourne, Australia; holds a Master of Public Policy from the University of Maryland; and a Bachelor of Science degree in anthropology and economics from James Madison University.
Lata N. Reddy
Lata N. Reddy is the Head of Prudential Financial’s Office of Corporate Social Responsibility, which sets the vision and strategy for the company’s impact investment, philanthropic, corporate contribution and employee engagement activities. In this role, Lata leads efforts across the company to leverage these resources in conjunction with Prudential’s full capabilities to create pathways for all to achieve financial and social prosperity.
Under Lata’s leadership, Prudential has pledged to build an impact investment portfolio of $1 billion by 2020 with more than $500 million in assets under management as of 2016. Additionally, she oversees a yearly budget of $50 million through The Prudential Foundation, which has made more than $750 million in grants and contributions to non-profit organizations since its founding in 1976.
Lata currently serves on the boards of Living Cities and Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) and is on the advisory board for the California Organized Investment Network (COIN). Additionally, she is a fellow of the Aspen Global Leaders Network. She has a Bachelor of Arts degree in economics from the University of Michigan, a law degree from Emory University School of Law and is admitted to the bar in the state of New York.
Amanda Ripley writes books and feature stories for The Atlantic, The New York Times and other outlets. She is the author, most recently, of The Smartest Kids in the World--and How They Got That Way, a New York Times bestseller. Her first book, The Unthinkable, was published in 15 countries and turned into a PBS documentary.
In her writing, Amanda explores the gap between public policy and actual human behavior. For Time and The Atlantic, she has written cover stories on the primacy of sports in American high schools, the college of the future and the science of motivating children. She has visited schools on four continents and interviewed hundreds of kids, teachers and parents. Her work has helped Time win two National Magazine Awards. To discuss her writing, Amanda has appeared on ABC, NBC, CNN, FOX News and NPR.
Rachel Schneider is a Senior Vice President at CFSI, and co-author ofThe Financial Diaries: How American Families Cope in a World of Uncertainty (forthcoming, April 2017). The Financial Diaries connects the findings of the ground-breaking U.S. Financial Diaries research project, which collected highly detailed data about how 235 households save, spend, borrow and plan over the course of a year, with the broad trends upending the economic lives of American families. It uncovers the emergence of a hidden inequality, in addition to disparities in income and wealth – an inequality in access to steady finances. It provides a framework for how to develop the products and policies that can help.
Rachel is a highly sought-after consultant and speaker, always offering her frank, insightful assessments of the financial challenges facing the majority of Americans. Her research has been featured in the nation’s top publications, including the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and many others, and she speaks frequently at a broad spectrum of events.
Though she began her career as an investment banker at Merrill Lynch & Co., Rachel credits her commitment to the potential for innovative finance to solve major social problems from her days as a VISTA Volunteer (now AmeriCorps). She holds a J.D./M.B.A. from the University of Chicago, and a B.A. from UC Berkeley. She lives in New York City with her husband, and their two children. She occasionally “competes” in triathlons, which are getting easier to “win” as the number of competitors in her age group shrinks. Unfortunately, the same improvements cannot be said of her piano skills.
The Center for Financial Services Innovation (CFSI) is the nation’s authority on consumer financial health. CFSI leads a network of financial services innovators committed to building a more robust financial services marketplace with higher quality products and services. Through its Compass Principles and a lineup of proprietary research, insights and events, CFSI informs, advises, and connects members of its network to seed the innovation that will transform the financial services landscape.
Dr. Thomas Shapiro, Director, Institute on Assets and Social Policy and the Pokross Professor of Law and Social Policy at The Heller School for Social Policy and Management, Brandeis University. Professor Shapiro's primary interest is in racial inequality and public policy. He is a leader in the asset field with a particular focus on closing the racial wealth gap. He co-authored a groundbreaking study, The Roots of the Widening Racial Wealth Gap: Explaining the Black-White Economic Divide. The Hidden Cost of Being African American: How Wealth Perpetuates Inequality, 2004 was widely reviewed. With Dr. Melvin Oliver, he wrote the award-winning Black Wealth/White Wealth, which received the 1997 Distinguished Scholarly Publication Award from the American Sociological Association. In 2011 he was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship to study the wealth gap in South Africa.
Dr. Shapiro’s widely anticipated new book Toxic Inequality: How America’s Wealth Gap Destroys Mobility, Deepens the Racial Divide, & Threatens Our Future will be launched March 2017.
Jim Shelton, President for Education, and former Deputy Secretary of Education under President Barack Obama, manages the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative’s education strategy, partnering with educators, communities and other key stakeholders to produce life changing learning experiences and systems to address the needs of the whole child. Previously, he served as the President and Chief Impact Officer at 2U, Inc., an education technology company that partners with top colleges and universities to bring their degree programs and credit-bearing courses online. He served as the Program Director for Education at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation from 2003 to 2010. Mr. Shelton has held a broad range of management, policy, and programmatic roles aimed at expanding access to personalized learning experience. He holds a bachelor's degree in computer science from Morehouse College and Master’s degrees in both business administration and education from Stanford University.
Michael J. Sorrell
Michael J. Sorrell is the 34th President of Paul Quinn College. Under his leadership, the school has become one of the most innovative small colleges in America and is rapidly becoming a model for urban higher education by focusing on academic rigor, experiential learning, and entrepreneurship.
Michael is very active in the community. Some of the entities for which he serves as a trustee or director are Duke University's Sanford School of Public Policy, the College Board, Amegy Bank, Teach for America, Earth Day Texas, Dallas Regional Chamber, the Dallas Foundation, and the Tate Distinguished Lecture Series and the Department of Education Policy and Leadership for the Simmons School of Education at SMU.
The Washington Monthly named President Sorrell one of America's 10 Most Innovative College Presidents. Additionally, he has been awarded the 2016 Martin Luther King Jr. Justice Award from the Dallas Bar Association, 2016 Distinguished Alumni Award from the University of Pennsylvania's Graduate School of Education, 2012 HBCU Male President of the Year by HBCU Digest; the Excellence in Education Distinguished Alumni Award from his high school, St. Ignatius College Prep in Chicago, Illinois and the A. Kenneth Pye Award for Excellence in Education from the Alumni Association of Duke University's School of Law.
President Sorrell earned his Ed.D. at the University of Pennsylvania and his J.D. and M.A. in Public Policy from Duke University. He graduated from Oberlin College with a B.A. in Government.
Michael is married to the former Natalie Jenkins. Natalie is an alumna of Spelman College and received her MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. They have two children, Michael Augustus and his younger sister, Sage Louis-Sinclair.
Anne Stuhldreher is the Director is the Director of Financial Justice in the Office of the Treasurer for the City and County of San Francisco. San Francisco will be the first city in the nation to launch a Financial Justice Project to assess and reform how fines, fees, and financial penalties impact the cities' most vulnerable residents.
Throughout her career, Ms. Stuhldreher has advanced innovations in local economic empowerment, civic engagement and public interest journalism. Ms. Stuhldreher has a distinguished track record of working with public officials to create public private partnerships that financially empower lower income residents. In San Francisco, she brought people together to initiate and launch initiatives like: Bank of San Francisco (that spurs banks to create starter accounts for the estimated one in five Americans who don’t have them); the Working Families Credit, and Kindergarten to College. As a Senior Policy Advisor to Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and First Lady Maria Shriver, she helped start the WE Connect Campaign and Bank on California. The “Bank on” strategy that Ms. Stuhldreher conceived is being replicated in dozens of cities. She also served as a Senior Program Manager for the California Endowment, a statewide health justice philanthropic foundation.
Ms Stuhldreher also authors op-eds and articles in outlets such as the Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, San Francisco Chronicle, and the Sacramento Bee. She has advised a wide range of elected officials, financial institutions, and community organizations. Formerly, Ms. Stuhldreher worked at the Ford Foundation, and was the Associate Director of Opportunity Fund, a Community Development Financial Institution in Northern California. She is currently a fellow at New America CA. She lives in San Francisco.
Tony Vinson is a Recruitment and Intake Coordinator for DC Central Kitchen (DCCK), a nonprofit organization that fights poverty and hunger through job training and job creation in the food and hospitality industries. Tony first came to DC Central Kitchen in January 2016 after serving his third prison sentence. As a young boy, he spent years in and out of foster care, lacking the emotional support of a consistent role model. As a result, much of Tony’s adult life was spent engaging in criminal activity that ultimately landed him in prison.
Originally from Ohio, Tony moved to Colorado when he was 15 years old, and relocated the DC area to live with his aunt upon being released from prison in 2016. It was her encouragement that led him to enroll in DC Central Kitchen’s Culinary Job Training program. After graduating from the program in May 2016, Tony was hired as a cook at The Hamilton, an upscale fine dining restaurant in downtown Washington, DC. Two months later, while still working at The Hamilton, Tony volunteered to join a DCCK recruiting visit at nearby halfway house to help encourage its residents to apply to the Culinary Job Training program. Tony’s obvious ability to connect with potential applicants and share his personal journey made him the top-choice to fill an open position as a full-time recruiter in July 2016, a role he still holds today and plans to keep for years to come.
Danielle Vogel, the creator of Glen's Garden Market, comes from a long line of grocers, stretching back four generations. Before founding Glen's, Danielle worked in government for ten years, for Democratic and Republicans in the House and Senate, as well as for the Department of Justice as an environmental litigator enforcing the Clean Air Act. When the effort to pass comprehensive climate legislation failed, she dedicated herself to finding a new (more incremental) way to address global warming. And thus evolved the idea for Glen's Garden Market, where Neighbors select from the Chesapeake Bay watershed’s finest produce, meats, poultry, dairy products and specialty foods in a space designed to celebrate seasonality and offer unprecedented access to environmentally sustainable, locally grown foods.
Every decision Danielle makes for the business is made with the environment in mind. She and her team seek out and develop relationships with vendors who treat their land, their animals and their ingredients with respect. In the nearly four years since opening their doors, the Glen’s team has launched over 65 local food businesses that share their values, of which 35 are owned by women. The stores are powered by wind, they engage in rigorous recycling and composting programs and they operate under a no-waste mandate, in addition to sourcing almost entirely from the States of the Chesapeake Bay Watershed, in order to minimize transportation and refrigeration emissions.
Danielle and her team opened a second location in Shaw in December 2015. Glen’s employs 96 people, all of whom make a living wage.
Senator Mark Warner
The first in his family to graduate from college, Mark Warner spent 20 years as a successful technology entrepreneur and business leader in Virginia before he was elected Governor in 2001. When he left the Governor's Office in 2006, Virginia was ranked as the best state for business, the best managed state, and the best state in which to receive a public education.
Governor Warner was elected to the United States Senate in 2008, where he serves on the Senate Finance, Banking, Budget, and Rules Committees as well as the Select Committee on Intelligence, where he is the Vice Chairman. He has been recognized as a national leader in fighting for our military men and women and veterans, and working to design a bipartisan, comprehensive plan to address our country's debt and deficit.
At a time when much in Washington seems to be stuck in a political standstill, Senator Warner stands out as a forward-thinking leader who’s willing to cross partisan divides to bring people together and get things done. As an early investor in the cellular telephone business, he co-founded the company that became Nextel and invested in hundreds of start-up technology companies that created tens of thousands of jobs. Leaning on his background in technology and state government, Senator Warner uses his position in the Senate to promote policies that encourage innovation and entrepreneurship and bring the federal government into the 21st century.
Sarah Enos Watamura
Dr. Sarah Enos Watamura is an Ascend at the Aspen Institute Fellow and an Associate Professor of Psychology at the University of Denver where she directs the Child Health & Development Lab and co-directs the Stress, Early Experience and Development (SEED) Research Center. After training with Megan Gunnar, PhD, at the University of Minnesota's Institute of Child Development, Dr. Watamura received her PhD from the Department of Human Development at Cornell University in 2005. She has longstanding interests in children¹s physiologic regulation, their development within caregiving contexts, and in understanding mechanisms and trajectories from early life stress to later well-being. Her work examines the unique stressors and buffers in families experiencing poverty and among newly immigrated families, and includes testing promising intervention approaches, and examining neurobiologic changes in mothers during the transition to parenting.
Gillian B. White
Gillian B. White is a senior associate editor at The Atlantic where she writes and edits a broad range of topics related to economics and business (including housing, poverty, and economic policy). White also oversees The Atlantic’s Next Economy project, which focuses on telling stories about the economic well being of cities around the country. Previously White was an editor at Kiplinger. Her work has also appeared in publications such as The New York Times, Bloomberg, and MarketWatch.
White holds a BA in economics and political science from Columbia University and an MS in journalism from Northwestern University’s Medill School. She currently resides in Washington DC.
Reverend Starsky D. Wilson is a pastor, philanthropist and activist pursuing God's vision of community marked by justice, peace and love. He is president & CEO of Deaconess Foundation, pastor of Saint John's Church (The Beloved Community) and co-chair of the Ferguson Commission. Through Saint John's, Wilson has led congregational activism on myriad issues, including youth violence prevention, Medicaid expansion, public school accreditation, voter mobilization, capping payday lending and raising the minimum wage. In 2014, Missouri Governor Jay Nixon appointed Rev. Wilson co-chair of the Ferguson Commission, a group of sixteen citizens empowered to study the underlying conditions and make public policy recommendations to help the region progress through issues exposed by the tragic death of Michael Brown, Jr. On September 14, 2015 they released the ground-breaking 'Forward Through Ferguson: A Path Toward Racial Equity" Report, calling for sweeping changes in policing, the courts, child well-being and economic mobility.