Information about speakers for TEDxManhattan 2013 is listed below.
Fred Bahnson is a writer, educator, and permaculture gardener. He is the author of Soil & Sacrament: Four Seasons Among the Keepers of the Earth (Simon & Schuster, 2013) and co-author of Making Peace with the Land (InterVarsity Press, 2012). Fred holds a masters in theological studies and in 2005 co-founded Anathoth Community Garden, a church-supported agriculture ministry in the Piedmont region of North Carolina. His essays have appeared in Christian Science Monitor, Orion, The Sun, Christian Century, and the anthologies Best American Spiritual Writing 2007 (Houghton Mifflin), Wendell Berry and Religion (Univ. Press of Kentucky) and State of the World 2011—Innovations that Nourish the Planet (Norton). His writing has received a number of awards, including an Award of Excellence from the Associated Church Press, a William Raney scholarship in nonfiction at Bread Loaf, a Kellogg Food & Community fellowship at the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy, and a 2012 North Carolina Artist fellowship in creative nonfiction from the North Carolina Arts Council. Fred lives with his wife and three sons on a hillside in Transylvania County, where they are growing a ½ acre edible forest garden with terraced vegetable beds. In 2012 Fred joined Wake Forest University School of Divinity as director of the new Food, Faith, & Religious Leadership Initiative, whose vision is to equip religious leaders with the skills necessary to create “more redemptive food systems, where God’s shalom becomes visible for a hungry world.”
Annemarie Colbin, Ph.D., is Founder and CEO of the Natural Gourmet Institute for Health and Culinary Arts in New York City, the oldest natural foods cooking school in the US (since 1977). She also lectures at the associated Natural Gourmet Institute for Food and Health and has been an adjunct professor of nutrition at Empire State College in New City, NY, and at Touro College. She is a once-yearly visiting lecturer at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition in New York City, and has led workshops all over the country in such well-known institutions as the Omega Institute, The New York Open Center, and Kripalu Yoga Center, as well as in many smaller regional organizations. She presented talks in the Integrative Health Symposium in 2009, as well as in several earlier ones.
She is the author of four books, authors a bimonthly column since 1988 for the magazine New York Spirit, and has written numerous other magazine articles as well as chapters in anthologies. For her charitable activities, Dr Colbin volunteers her time on the board of the non-profit organization, FIONS (Friends of the Institute of Noetic Sciences). She is also on the Board of Advisors of Health Corps, the organization founded by Dr Mehmet Oz; of What Doctors Don’t Tell You (UK), and of the Source of Synergy Foundation. In addition, she is a consultant (as representative of the Natural Gourmet Institute) for Project Aspire, a project of Touro College’s Children’s Health Education Foundation (CHEF), in teaching 5 and 6-year olds the importance of healthful eating.
A graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, Hyde Park, NY, Ann has been a chef for more than 30 years including positions with Holland America Cruises, Radisson Hotels, Telluride Ski Resort as well as serving as Executive Chef at the renowned Putney Inn in Vermont. She has been featured in many prominent publications including The New York Times, The Washington Post, The San Francisco Chronicle, and The Chicago Tribune and has appeared on many media outlets. Ann has shared her knowledge and experience by speaking at the Smithsonian Institute and the National Restaurant Association among other institutions and conferences. She has been honored by SLOW Food USA, selected as a Kellogg Food and Society Policy Fellow, and awarded an honorary doctorate from SUNY Cobleskill for her work on sustainable agriculture. Ann is the author of four books. She is past president of The American Culinary Federation of Central Vermont, and past president and board member of Women’s Chefs and Restaurateurs. She also served on the U.S. Department of Agriculture National Organic Standards Board, a Congressional appointment, and was an Executive Committee member of Chefs Collaborative. In 2009, Ann founded Food Family Farming Foundation (F3) as a nonprofit focusing on solutions to the school food crisis. Chef Ann is happily working overtime as a Chef, Nutrition Services Director, Consultant, Author, Public Speaker, and Advocate because she sees a need for change and has the gifts to help.
Maisie Greenawalt joined Bon Appétit Management Company, which provides from-scratch food service to corporations, universities, and museums in 32 states, in 1994. As vice president of strategy, she’s been instrumental in shaping the company’s numerous commitments to social and environmental responsibility. In 1999, Maisie helped develop the Farm to Fork program, a groundbreaking company-wide initiative to buy locally, and has since helped create and launch a number of Bon Appétit¹s other progressive policies. Bon Appétit is the first food service company to commit to serving only seafood that met Seafood Watch sustainability guidelines (in 2002), to reducing antibiotic use in farm animals (2003), to serving only rBGH-free milk (2003) and cage-free eggs (2005), to tackling food’s role in climate change (2007), and to addressing farmworker rights (2009). Most recently, Bon Appétit announced a comprehensive animal welfare plan, including switching to 100% humanely raised ground beef (effective immediately) and to phasing out all pork raised with gestation crates by the aggressive date of 2015. Maisie is on the board of Food Alliance, North America’s most comprehensive third-party certification for the production, processing, and distribution of sustainable food; and on the board of the Equitable Food Initiative, a new integrated labor standards project led by United Farm Workers, Pesticide Action Network, and the Consumer Federation of America. She was named a Silicon Valley Woman of Influence in 2012.
Gary Hirshberg is Chairman of Stonyfield Farm, the world’s leading organic yogurt producer, and Managing Director of Stonyfield Europe, with organic brands in Ireland, and France. Gary serves on several corporate and non-profit boards including Applegate Farms, Honest Tea, Peak Organic Brewing, Late July, The Full Yield, SweetGreen, RAMp Sports, Glenisk, the Danone Communities Fund and the Danone Livelihoods Fund. He is the Chairman, CEO and Co-founder of Chelsea’s Table Cafés, a natural and organic fast casual restaurant firm. In 2011, President Obama appointed Gary to serve on the Advisory Committee for Trade Policy and Negotiations. He is a Co-Chair of AGree, an agricultural policy initiative formed by the Ford, Gates, Kellogg, Rockefeller, Walton and other leading foundations. He is Chairman and a founding Partner of Just Label It, We Have the Right to Know, the national campaign to label genetically engineered foods, and is co-author of Label It Now – What You Need to Know About Genetically Engineered Foods. He is the author of Stirring It Up: How to Make Money and Save the World.
Gary has received nine honorary doctorates and numerous awards for corporate and environmental leadership including a 2012 Lifetime Achievement Award by the US EPA.
Previously, he was the Founder of Climate Counts, Director of the Rural Education Center, the small organic farming school from which Stonyfield was spawned and Executive Director of The New Alchemy Institute – a research and education center dedicated to organic farming, aquaculture, and renewable energy. Before that he was a water-pumping windmill specialist and an environmental education director with the US Fish and Wildlife Service. He also authored books on wind-power and organic gardening.
Peter Hoffman Peter Hoffman is the chef owner of Back Forty (2007) and Back Forty West (2012) the restaurant he opened on Prince St. after operating Savoy in the same location for over 20 years. Both restaurants work with a simple premise – to create delicious and memorable meals by sourcing the very best seasonal ingredients from local farmers, serving it in a casual intelligent setting. Termed by the New York Times “A Locavore Before the Word Existed”, Hoffman has a long commitment to seasonal cooking along with an awareness of the environmental impact of his sourcing. Hoffman served on the board of the Chefs Collaborative, a 1000 member organization of culinary professionals promoting sustainable food choices in the restaurant industry from 1997 until 2010 and acted as its national chair from 2000-2006. He was featured in the summer of ’04 as Chef of the Times in a four part New York Times series and penned two Op Ed pieces for the NY Times as well. National coverage of the restaurant and Hoffman’s cooking has also appeared in Gourmet (top 50 restaurants of 2007) Met Home, The New Yorker, Saveur and the PBS series entitled “Chefs A’Field.”
Cheryl Kollin is the founding principal of Full Plate Ventures, a consulting business that leverages the symbiotic relationship between business and social mission. She works with entrepreneurs, new businesses, and non-profits creating social enterprises that address interconnected issues of local food systems, environmental sustainability, and economic development.
In 2012 she launched Farm to Freezer in partnership with Bethesda Cares, to address surplus fresh produce, hunger, and food waste. This social enterprise preserves donated fresh, local food at its peak ripeness; provides healthier food for Bethesda Cares’ homeless client meals; supports local farmers; reduces food waste; provides community service opportunities; and raises local awareness about homelessness, nutrition, and locally-grown food. Farm to Freezer is recognized by Foodshed Magazine and Cheryl is featured as Green Gaithersburg’s environmentalist of the month.
Cheryl is a founding member of the Montgomery County, Maryland Food Council and co-chairs the Food Access Working Group, currently developing an interactive countywide foodshed map. Cheryl loves to cook and won the 2012 local Iron Chef Contest fundraiser; she will defend her title in 2013.
Anna Lappé is a national bestselling author and a founding principal of the Small Planet Institute and Small Planet Fund. Anna’s most recent book is Diet for a Hot Planet: The Climate Crisis at the End of Your Fork and What You Can Do About It, named by Booklist and Kirkus as one of the best environmental book’s of the year. She is the co-author of Hope’s Edge, which chronicles social movements fighting hunger around the world, and Grub: Ideas for an Urban Organic Kitchen, with seasonal menus by chef Bryant Terry. A popular educator about sustainable food and farming, Anna has participated in hundreds of events, from hosting community dinners to delivering university keynotes to emceeing a food-focused fundraiser at Sotheby’s. She is currently the director of the Real Food Media Project, a new series of myth-busting videos about the real story of our food.
Peter Lehner is the Executive Director of NRDC and NRDC Action Fund. NRDC, one the nation’s leading environmental advocacy organizations with over 1.3 million members and activists and 430 staff in seven offices, works to protect people’s health and families, communities, jobs, and wild spaces by accelerating clean and efficient energy, transportation and protecting our oceans, waters and homes from pollution. He is responsible for guiding NRDC’s policy positions, advocacy strategies, communications plans, development and administration, and managing NRDC’s seven offices and for leading the Action Fund’s political activities. Since Peter’s return to NRDC in 2006, NRDC has opened new offices in Beijing and Chicago, started the Center for Market Innovation, and expanded both its policy and communications capacity. Previously, Peter served as chief of the Environmental Protection Bureau of the New York State Attorney General’s office for eight years. He supervised all environmental litigation by the state, prosecuting a wide variety of polluters and developing innovative multi-state strategies targeting global warming, acid rain, and smog causing emissions. Peter previously served at NRDC as a senior attorney in charge of the water program. Before that, he created and led the environmental prosecution unit for New York City. Peter holds an AB in philosophy and mathematics from Harvard College and is a graduate of Columbia University Law School, where he continues to teach environmental law. He also has extensive experience in sustainable farming and green business.
David McInerney has been on a “tastes-great” crusade for the past twenty years. A former French-trained chef, he is a co-founder of FreshDirect.com, the leading online grocer in the U.S.
In strategically setting the direction for food at FreshDirect, David helps educate and provide higher quality fresh food to millions in New York and Philadelphia. Every year, he spends the majority of his time visiting and building relationships with local and global farmers, ranchers, and fishermen, giving him a rare view across the entire sustainable food spectrum. David started his food career while studying and working in Burgundy under renowned chef Bernard Loiseau at his Michelin 3-Star restaurant La Cote d’Or and later under legendary New York Chef David Bouley.
He is a sought after speaker and food educator. He has dedicated his life to changing the way consumers eat, and how the industry sources fresh, healthy, sustainable foods.
Named one of the top ten “eco-heroes” of the planet by the UK’s Independent and lauded as the “environmental messenger” by Vanity Fair, Simran Sethi is an award-winning journalist, strategist and educator. She is the founder and curator of the website Metamorphose, an interdisciplinary exploration of the personal and cultural dimensions of transformation. Simran is the contributing author of “Ethical Markets: Growing the Green Economy,” winner of the bronze 2008 Axiom Award for Best Business Ethics Book. She has written about sustainability for Huffington Post, Metropolis Magazine, Oprah.com and the Guggenheim Museum. Simran is the former environmental correspondent for NBC News and was a featured guest on NPR and programs including the “The Oprah Winfrey Show” and “Today Show.” She has spoken about the intersection of food and culture in Italy, Turkey, France and throughout the United States. She has presented at institutions ranging from the Commonwealth Club to Cornell University; keynoted conferences including the 140 Character Conference, the Green Business Conference and the North American Association For Environmental Education conference; and moderated panels for the White House sustainability symposium GreenGov and Clinton Global Initiative University. Simran is committed to a redefinition of environmentalism that includes voices from urban centers and rural communities.
LaDonna Redmond joined the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy in 2011 as the Senior Program Associate in Food and Justice. A long-time community activist, she has successfully worked to get Chicago Public Schools to evaluate junk food, launched urban agriculture projects, started a community grocery store, and worked on federal farm policy to expand access to healthy food in low-income communities. In 2009, she was one of 25 citizen and business leaders named a Responsibility Pioneer by Time Magazine. In 2007, she was awarded a Green For All Fellowship. LaDonna was also a 2003-2005 IATP Food and Society Fellow. Redmond is a frequently invited speaker, and currently hosts the weekly Monday evening radio program “It’s Your Health” on 89.9 KMOJ, The People’s Station. LaDonna attended Antioch College in Yellow Springs, Ohio.
Lindsey Lusher Shute is the Executive Director and co-founder of the National Young Farmers’ Coalition, (NYFC) a membership-based organization dedicated to the success of the next generation of sustainable farmers in the United States. NYFC’s supporter network includes thousands of farmers and consumers from all fifty states, who work together to advocate for change in Federal policy, develop new farm technology through the Farm Hack project and solve local issues through regional NYFC chapters. Lindsey regularly speaks at conferences and meetings across the nation, advocating for practical and policy solutions that will help beginning farmers build independent and sustainable farms. Lindsey and her husband run Hearty Roots Community Farm, a 600-member CSA farm, in the Hudson River Valley. Lindsey’s first growing experience was at the Red Shed Community Garden in Brooklyn, which she built from the ground up with neighbors.
Steve Wing received his Ph.D. in epidemiology from The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where he is currently an associate professor. Recent work has focused on environmental injustice and health effects of ionizing radiation, industrial animal production, sewage sludge, and landfills. He has collaborated on health and exposure studies with communities and workers impacted by threats to environmental and occupational health.
Tama Matsuoka Wong is a professional forager and the principal of MeadowsandMore, which she founded to connect people with wild plants and natural landscapes. She won the New Jersey Forest Stewardship Award in 2007 for her work on stewarding her own property in western New Jersey. She collaborated with New Jersey Audubon on producing a booklet Meadows on the Menu about how to work with nature to turn lawns or fallow fields in to meadows. Tama has advised and worked with schools, conservation groups and private individuals to assess, steward and restore natural landscapes on their properties.
Tama recently authored the book Foraged Flavor: Finding Fabulous Ingredients in your Backyard or Farmers Market about her several year project with the chef de cuisine at Restaurant Daniel in NYC to turn edible “weeds” from nature in to delicious cuisine. Tama has lectured about food and nature across the country and has led educational programs for schools, conservation groups, foodies and homeowners. Her “weed” work has been profiled in the NYTimes, NPR, CBS Sunday morning, among others.
Bill Yosses spent his early career in France at pastry meccas such as Fauchon, La Maison du Chocolat, and LeNôtre. In New York, he continued at Bouley Restaurant. In 2005 he became pastry chef at The Dressing Room Restaurant, working with chef Michel Nischan and with the actor/philanthropist, Paul Newman. Bill helped develop “The Dinner Party Project” in New York City as a part of Spoons Across America’s programming in which chefs teach kids about healthy food choices and how to prepare a dinner party for their parents.
As Pastry Chef of the White House he has been closely involved with Mrs. Obama’s Let’s Move initiative with the goal of reducing childhood health problems related to diet. Working in the White House garden has been his most important inspiration to date.
In a related project, he recently helped develop a program in the Physics Department of Harvard University in conjunction with Chop Chop Magazine called Camp Chop Chop in which healthy foods and innovative exercise are used to introduce scientific concepts to 4th and 5th graders
Bill has published two books, Desserts for Dummies 1997, and The Perfect Finish, Special Desserts for Every Occasion, 2010.
Standing Ground (working title)
Sisters Diane and Marlene Halverson grew up on a Midwestern dairy farm. Their current work builds on their long careers in the field of farm animal welfare.
In 2009, they created Field Productions, LLC to produce documentary films that explore the linkages between farm animal welfare and food sovereignty, quality of rural life, and human and environmental health, including climate change and biodiversity.
They have written about and collaborated on three internationally distributed short films about the impacts of industrialized farming on animals, communities and the environment.
Juxtaposed against the social and ecological ravages of industrialized animal farming, their current feature length documentary Standing Ground (working title) depicts farmers from the U.S., Scandinavia, Eastern Europe, and Africa who have chosen a different path—one designed to be in greater harmony with nature and respectful of the wild and domesticated species that, with us, inhabit our endangered earth. It suggests that putting into practice a more informed ethic concerning animals we raise for food is fundamental to a socially just and ecologically sound farming and food system.
There is so much interest in food these days but very little interest in the hands that pick that food. Food Chains is a feature length documentary that explores the abuses in farm labor as well as the modern forces that perpetuate them. The film stars a number of very powerful farmworkers including those from the Coalition of Immokalee Workers as well as activists like Eva Longoria (Executive Producer), Barry Estabrook, Dolores Huerta, Bobby Kennedy Jr, Kerry Kennedy and Eric Schlosser.
Food Chains is directed by Sanjay Rawal, whose last film, Challenging Impossibility, on the weightlifting exploits of the late spiritual leader Sri Chinmoy, premiered at the 2011 Tribeca Film Festival and screened at more than 75 festivals globally winning a number of awards. Sanjay has a background in agriculture and international development having spent 10 years working in over 40 countries on policy, project development and disaster relief. The film is produced by Smriti Keshari and Hamilton Fish.
Food Chains has an anticipated release date of Spring 2013.
A Place at the Table
50 million people in the U.S.—one in four children—don’t know where their next meal is coming from, despite our having the means to provide nutritious, affordable food for all Americans. Directors Kristi Jacobson and Lori Silverbush examine this issue through the lens of three people who are struggling with food insecurity: Barbie, a single Philadelphia mother who grew up in poverty and is trying to provide a better life for her two kids; Rosie, a Colorado fifth-grader who often has to depend on friends and neighbors to feed her and has trouble concentrating in school; and Tremonica, a Mississippi second-grader whose asthma and health issues are exacerbated by the largely empty calories her hardworking mother can afford.
Their stories are interwoven with insights from experts including sociologist Janet Poppendieck, author Raj Patel and nutrition policy leader Marion Nestle; Top Chef’s Tom Colicchio and Oscar®-winning actor Jeff Bridges. Ultimately, A Place at the Table shows us how hunger poses serious economic, social and cultural implications for our nation, and that it could be solved once and for all, if the American public decides—as they have in the past—that making healthy food available and affordable is in the best interest of us all.
Described as “indefatigable and eclectic” (The New York Times) and “vital and brilliant” (The New Yorker), the string quartet ETHEL continues to be a pacesetter of post-classical music. Formed in 1998, the New York City-based ETHEL comprises Ralph Farris (viola), Dorothy Lawson (cello), Kip Jones (violin) and Tema Watstein (violin).
ETHEL performs adventurous music by celebrated contemporary composers such as Julia Wolfe, Phil Kline, David Lang, John King, Raz Mesinai, John Zorn, Steve Reich, Kenji Bunch, JacobTV, Don Byron, Marcelo Zarvos, Evan Ziporyn and Mary Ellen Childs.
Upcoming highlights for the 2012-13 season include: a concert tour of the Netherlands; a week-long workshop/performance of “ETHEL’s Documerica” at New York City’s Park Avenue Armory; and nationwide tours of “Tell Me Something Good” with rock icon Todd Rundgren, of “Music of the Sun” with Native American flutist Robert Mirabal, and of “And Other Stories…” with guitarist Kaki King. ETHEL currently serves as the Ensemble-in-Residence at the Grand Canyon Music Festival as part of the Native American Composers Apprenticeship Project, the official house band of TEDxManhattan, and the Resident Ensemble at The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Balcony Bar.
For more information, please visit www.ethelcentral.org.
Multi-Grammy Award Winning drummer Ulysses Owens Jr., is a native of Jacksonville, Florida and a Juilliard graduate with a Bachelor of Music degree in Jazz Studies.
In 2010 Ulysses received his first Grammy Award for his performance on Kurt Elling’s Dedicated To You, and in 2012 his second Grammy Award for Christian McBride’s Big Band Album The Good Feeling. Currently, Ulysses is touring as the drummer for Grammy Winning Artists Christian McBride, Nnenna Freelon, and Ted Nash.
Of his 2009 debut album, critics said “It’s Time For U not only elicits Owens talent to keep the music mobile and ramp up the songs dynamics with well-positioned solos, but the use of vocals on some of the tracks deepens the album’s luster.” His second album, Unanimous, has been hailed by critics and audiences alike as “…the best jazz album of 2012.”
Ulysses is the Co-Founding Artistic Director of Don’t Miss A Beat, his family’s non-profit organization, the core mission of which is to blend music and art with focus on academic achievement, civic engagement and to inspire and empower inner city students to strive for their dream.
Hailed by Rolling Stone as “a genre unto herself,” Kaki King is a true iconoclast, a visionary musician/artist whose singular work rightly stands out amongst the easily formatted. Over her decade-long career thus far, the Brooklyn-based guitarist/composer has recorded five extraordinarily diverse and distinctive LPs, performed with such icons as Foo Fighters, Timbaland, and The Mountain Goats, contributed to a variety of film and TV soundtracks (spanning Golden Globe-nominated work on Sean Penn’s Into The Wild to scoring – and appearing in as guitar-playing hand double – the acclaimed 2007 drama, August Rush), and played to ever-growing audiences on innumerable world tours. Each twist and veer marked the turning of a page, another step forward on a truly exceptional musical path. Beginning with 2002’s Everybody Loves You – to date, her only fully acoustic guitar recording – King has expanded and reconceived the role of the solo instrumental artist, constantly kicking at the boundaries of what’s expected.
Hair & Makeup
Sheila McKenna, President and Founder of Kett Cosmetics, is an industry veteran with over 20 years experience in makeup artistry. Her work has been seen in film, television, print, theatre and runway. She is widely recognized as an expert in the field of airbrush makeup artistry and has served as the subject matter authority for several publications.
Sheila McKenna founded the Kett line of products and airbrush equipment in 2000. Today, Kett Cosmetics is globally recognized and considered an essential brand for professional artists, makeup academies, studios and television networks.
To see speaker bios from the 2012 event, click here
To see speaker bios from the 2011 event, click here