Check back to see the Bios of presenters as they are added.
Doyle Canning is a strategist, trainer, and organizer with a deep commitment to building 21st century social movements for ecological justice. She came to the smartMeme collective in 2003 after studying critical pedagogy, working as a grassroots organizer, and being banned from Australia for her rabble rousing. As co-director at smartMeme, Doyle serves social movements a facilitator, messaging coach, and campaign consultant. She is a contributor to Letters from Young Activists (Nation Books, 2005), and has served on the advisory funding panel of the Haymarket People’s Fund, an antiracist social change foundation for New England. Doyle practices yoga, sings, and celebrates life. She lives in Boston.
Tom Louie is a development and communications consultant, and the Coordinator of PCN-Boston/New England Chapter,. He is a long-time organizer, public policy advocate and media skills trainer. He works primarily with grassroots and community-based organizations on immigrant rights, public education and language rights issues. Tom was the Director of Development and Communications at Political Research Associates (PRA). Prior to PRA, he directed programs at Mass. English Plus Coalition and Mass. Immigrant and Refugee Advocacy Coalition, organizing statewide advocacy and communications campaigns. Tom was also instrumental in the formation of Immigrant Solidarity and Action Alliance which conducted collective media and organizing strategies and trainings in greater Boston in response to California’s passage of Proposition 187.
Nadeem Mazen is CEO of Serious Business, LLC, a Boston-based design and consulting firm specializing in interactive software, UI/UX, viral marketing, and design. He is also co-founder of danger!awesome a laser-cutting studio and community art storefront at the heart of Central Square, Cambridge. Mazen is engaged in ongoing pedagogy, experiential learning, and education-software research. Mazen is engaged in outspoken protest against government sanctioned human rights abuses, malfeasance, and finance-industry mismanagement. Mazen overseas the creation of animated content, interactive video content, product prototypes, and other software and hardware projects. He has won awards for interactive-content creation (e-merging Magazine and Bilingual and Bicultural studies prizes, 2006), for pedagogy research (Industry Prize for Best Paper, e-ducation Without Borders, 2003), for poverty alleviation through social entrepreneurship (IDEAS competition, winning team, 2009), and art (“The Near East: Islam’s Original Melting Pot” lecture series featured artist, 2009). Mazen and Serious Business Co-founder Ali Mohammad have also been recognized for their directorial work, winning a prestigious Adfest Silver Medal for Film Craft and Adfest Bronze Medal for Viral Video.
Monique Nguyen Belizario, Deputy Director/Community Organizer at MataHari, is a first generation immigrant of Vietnam war refugees and an immigrant from Canada to the US – she considers herself a hybrid of both refugee/immigrant. In 2011, she was awarded Community Change, Inc.’s Horace Seldon Emerging Leader Award: “Young activists living the commitment” for her Anti-Racism work! With humble beginnings in MataHari as a volunteer turned media/communications consultant to now our vibrant lead community organizer and deputy director! Monique graduated from the University of Houston with a B.S. in Human Nutrition. With a diverse background which includes, government administration, legal assistance, nutrition research, journalism, web development, and entrepreneurism she brings a unique skill set to MataHari. She is involved in all of MataHari’s programming, is the lead domestic worker organizer, and is is responsible for MataHari’s communications, web development, and technological efforts. One of her hobbies includes exploring her cultural identity and the culture of others through cooking. Her passion for immigrant rights and social equity is the driving force behind her work at MataHari. She is an active member of the Student Immigrant Movement and Boston Progress Arts Collective.
Cara Lisa Berg Powers is Co-Director of Press Pass TV, an organization that works with middle, high school, and college aged youth to create powerful solution oriented videos to build strong communities. In addition to her work at Press Pass TV, Cara is currently a candidate for her Doctorate in Educational Leadership and Change and the author of By Any Media Necessary. She has presented workshops at several conferences, and guest lectured at Simmons College, Worcester State University, MIT, UMASS Boston, and Amherst College, as well as running trainings for non-profit leaders such as Facing History and Ourselves and Oxfam. Currently, Cara resides in her hometown of Worcester, MA with her husband and their two cats, Dora and Presley, where she is a Commissioner on the Human Rights Commission.
Bethany Ramirez is the online communications specialist at Third Sector New England, where she coordinates as well as creates and posts web content, and works with program and IT staff to create and communicate with various TSNE e-communities, including developing TSNE’s social networking presence.
Wesley Richardson, Media Production and Education Manager at amplifyme, is a filmmaker whose work deals with self-reflection as it pertains to culture, language, and human phobias. He won the award for Emerging Director at the Roxbury Film Festival. His films have been selected to be a part of festivals sponsored by Vibe Magazine and Showtime Television, giving him the opportunity to show and speak about his work and outlook in the media. He frequently lectures on film as more than entertainment, and as a tool for engagement and activism in galleries and at several schools. He is a graduate of Massachusetts College of Art with a BA in Film/Media Production with a focus on cultural studies.
Linda Stout, Executive Director of Spirit in Action, is an activist and a visionary. In her lifetime, she has identified and worked against injustice within her world, her country and her community. Like so many women – a handful recognized, most invisible – she has refused to be silenced or stopped from building inclusive, direct democracy. As a thirteenth-generation Quaker born to a tenant-farming family in the Piedmont region of North Carolina, Linda first recognized racial and economic injustice in the mid-1970s. Refusing to support the racism and classism endemic in the textile mill she worked in, Linda left a desperately needed paycheck and began a lifelong mission for social change.