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The Feast 2014

October 9-11th, 2014, Brooklyn, NY


Wendy Suzuki

Professor of Neural Science and Psychology,
New York University

Wendy Suzuki, Ph.D. is a Professor of Neural Science and Psychology at New York University. She received her undergraduate degree from U.C. Berkeley in the Department of Physiology/Anatomy and her Ph.D. in Neuroscience from U.C. San Diego. She completed a post-doctoral fellowship at the National Institutes of Health before starting her faculty position in the Center for Neural Science at New York University in 1998. Her research focuses on two main questions. First, she is interested in understanding how our brains allow us to learn and retain new long-term memories for facts and events. Second, she is interested in understanding the effects of aerobic exercise on our brain’s learning memory and cognitive abilities. Wendy is a recipient of numerous grants and awards for her research including the Lindsley Prize from the Society for Neuroscience, the prestigious Troland Research award from the National Academy of Sciences and NYU’s Golden Dozen Teaching award. In addition to research and teaching she is also passionate about supporting women in science. Her first book, entitled “Brain Healthy” will be published by Harper Collins in March of 2015 and describes her life in science and fascination with both the brain areas involved in memory as well as how exercise can improve brain function.


Shawn Humphrey

Professor. Blogger. Speaker. Founder

Shawn Humphrey is the founder of the Two Dollar Challenge, La Ceiba Microfinance, the Month of Microfinance, and the Poverty Action Conference. He is also on the Board of Directors of Students Helping Honduras, a former Clinton Global Initiative University mentor and an Opportunity Collaboration alum. He is currently an Associate Professor of Economics at the University of Mary Washington (where he has taught since 2005) and IMAGINE Social Good’s 1st Social Good Fellow.

Jonathan Ford

Founding Partner and CCO,

As Founding Partner and Chief Creative Officer, Jonathan represents Pearlfisher on the global design stage. Never one to simply accept the status quo, Jonathan continually provokes and questions the world, inspiring Pearlfisher to create design that makes the future better. An award-winning designer and advocate of the power of creativity to inspire change, Jonathan has been responsible for creating some of the world’s most loved Challenger and Iconic brands, and for leading a successful series of #challengersandicons interviews with the people behind the brands of the future who understand the need to harness creativity and bold ideas to create success. Jonathan champions the art of brand design through all aspects of his career, including in his role as Trustee of the Haller Foundation. A continuous advocate of the power of a good idea, Jonathan speaks regularly on the brand, design and innovation conference circuit, on such prestigious platforms as PSFK and the World Future Trends Summit.

Bryna Lipper

Vice President, Relationships,
100 Resilient Cities, pioneered by Rockefeller Foundation

Prior to joining 100 Resilient Cities, Bryna Lipper held leadership roles in government, non-profit, and private sector organizations dedicated to advancing the quality of urban life. Most recently, she was the Director of Philanthropic Research and Initiatives for the Office of International and Philanthropic Innovation (IPI) at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), where she led the Department’s strategies to spur philanthropic partnerships, promote policy innovation, and increase investments aligned with federal priorities. At HUD she also directed comparative international research programs focused on innovative urban policies. Her previous experience also includes roles as Vice President for Marketing, Communications, and Government Affairs at the National Building Museum; co-founder of the Global Studio—a non-profit organization encouraging design students and building professionals to work in underserved communities with vulnerable populations; and at the Australian firm of Architects Johannsen & Associates. Before transitioning to a career in urban development, Bryna was also a Vice President of the marketing and consumer licensing agency Bensussen Deutsch & Associates (BD&A). Bryna holds a Bachelor of Design in Architecture from the University of Sydney and a Master of Public Administration from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, and was a Funders’ Network for Smart Growth and Livable Communities PLACES Fellow.

Chris Howe

Musician and Artist

C.D. Howe is a Canadian/American musician and artist that designs works at the intersection of instrument and installation. Working to create new rituals for the transhuman, Howe has explored interactive musical environments, spatialization installations, and biofeedback instrumentation. Currently, CD Howe is attending the Center for Music Technology at Georgia Tech. He was awarded the Ideas for Creative Exploration (ICE) grant from the University of Georgia. Howe will be serving as artistic director and collaborative coordinator with the kinesiology, dance, engineering, and art departments within the University of Georgia and Georgia Tech. The goal of this collaboration will be to create a wireless smart textile suit utilizing electromyography to allow a dancer a level of comprovistional influence over their soundtrack. This will integrate with a larger iteration of the Biowave program, using similar MIDI and wireless micro-controller systems.


Jessica Lawrence

Executive Director,
NY Tech Meetup

Jessica Lawrence is the Executive Director of NY Tech Meetup (NYTM), the largest Meetup in the world and a non-profit organization helping to build a sustainable and diverse technology industry in New York. In 2013, she co-founded The Work Revolution Summit, a conference on the future of work. Prior to her work with NYTM, Jessica was the CEO of Girl Scouts of San Gorgonio Council in Southern California, where she supported a community of 75 staff, 5,000 volunteers, and 15,000 girls. Jessica was one of only 15 women selected to participate in Seth Godin’s Female Entrepreneur MBA (FeMBA) in 2010. She has received numerous awards including the Girl Scouts of the USA Frances Hesselbein Award for Excellence in Management in 2007, was selected as one of The Daily Muse’s 12 Women to Watch in 2012, and as one of the Crain's New York Business People to Watch in Silicon Alley 2013. Jessica’s writing has been featured on the Harvard Business Review blog,, The Next Web, The Daily Muse and in a weekly column in The Press-Enterprise. She also speaks frequently on technology startups, the New York technology community, women in tech, organizational development and culture, the future of work, and non-profit management.

Jon Pack


Jon Pack is a Brooklyn-based documentary and editorial photographer. His photographs have been exhibited in galleries in the United States and Europe, and have appeared in print and on book covers from publishers including Random House and Simon & Schuster. since 2008, Jon has been working with filmmaker Gary Hustwit on the Olympic City Project. Jon Pack is a member of Local 600 international cinematographers guild.

Gary Hustwit

Filmmaker and Photographer

Gary Hustwit is an independent filmmaker based in New York and London. He has produced eight feature documentaries, including the award-winning I Am Trying To Break Your Heart about the band Wilco; Moog, the documentary about electronic music pioneer Robert Moog; and an experimental feature film with the band Animal Collective. Hustwit worked with punk label SST Records in the late-1980s, ran the independent book publishing house Incommunicado Press during the 1990s, was Vice President of the media website in 2000, and started the indie DVD label Plexifilm in 2001. In 2007 he made his directorial debut with Helvetica, a documentary about graphic design and typography. The film marked the beginning of a design film trilogy, with Objectified, about industrial design and product design following in 2009. Urbanized, about the design of cities, premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival in September 2011. The films have been broadcast on PBS, BBC, HBO and television outlets in 20 countries, and have been screened in over 300 cities worldwide. Hustwit was nominated for an Independent Spirit Award for Helvetica.

Andrew Zolli


Andrew Zolli works at the intersection of global innovation, foresight, social change and resilience. A central thrust of his work has been on how to harness the power of networks for collaborative discovery, innovation and change. For the past 12 years, Zolli has led the transformation of PopTech into renowned innovation and social change network. PopTech brings together a community of innovators from many different fields to share ideas and to work on new approaches to some of the world’s toughest problems. "We identify and train some of the most amazing people you’ll ever meet, doing things you cannot believe humanity is up to," says Zolli, "We help them share breakthrough ideas and to work together on truly world-changing projects, doing stuff nobody has ever tried before, in areas like financial innovation and inclusion, data science and community resilience, mobile health, climate adaptation, urban resilience and violence cessation." Zolli also spends much of his time advancing a global dialogue on resilience: on how to help people and systems persist, recover and thrive amid disruption. For several years, his colleague Ann Marie Healy and Zolli have traveled from the coral reefs of Palau to the back streets of Palestine exploring these issues. The results are encapsulated in "Resilience: Why Things Bounce Back," published by Simon and Schuster in the U.S., and in many other languages and territories around the world. Zolli's work since has focused on bringing together coalitions of interested practitioners and leaders from many resilience-related fields.

Monica McCarthy

Experience Impresario,

Monica loves bringing together curious people and big ideas. She is currently the Experience Impresario for Holstee, a design and event studio that exists to help people live mindfully. (The Holstee Manifesto has has been downloaded well over 150 million times worldwide!) Monica is also the founder of Cheshire Parlour, a contemporary philosophy salon, and Show & Tell Stories, a boutique video production company. A former Broadway and television actress from Los Angeles, Monica now resides in Brooklyn, though her passport is never far away.

Dustin Yellin

Pioneer Works

Born in California in 1975 and raised in Colorado, Dustin Yellin is a contemporary artist living in Brooklyn, New York, best-known for his sculptural paintings. Multiple glass layers, each individually embellished, create a unified intricate, three-dimensional collage. His art is notable both for its massive scale and its fantastic, dystopian themes. The work displays Yellin’s surreal romance with the detailed genius of the natural world and humankind’s dubious efforts to improve it. Yellin displays a ready willingness to experiment with forms and materials, using bizarre found objects, eccentric clippings from diverse sources, computer-generated images, acrylic, and glass. In 2010, Yellin founded Pioneer Works, a social sculpture and non-profit institute for art and innovation in Red Hook. The capacious site is a venue for conceptual and creative cross-pollination, a quarter where resident artists and thinkers from diverse disciplines can interact without normative restrictions, ideally producing social change through innovative work.

Jim Rutt

Santa Fe Institute

Jim Rutt is the past Chairman of the Santa Fe Institute. He was CEO of Network Solutions, Inc., which operated the .com, .net, and .org domain namespaces on the Internet. He served as chief strategy officer and division President after Network Solutions was acquired by VeriSign in 2000 for $17 billion. Prior to Network Solutions, Jim was the first chief technology officer of Thomson-Reuters and before that, he either founded or played a key role in several significant information services and network companies: THE SOURCE, Business Research Corp., First Call, Pinpoint Information, and NHC Systems. He was non-executive Chairman of the computer chip design software company Analog Design Automation from 2001 until its acquisition by Synposis in 2004. He was Researcher in Residence from 2002 to 2004 at the Santa Fe Institute, studying the application of complexity science to financial markets, social simulations, agent based models, and evolutionary artificial intelligence. Subsequently he joined the Board of Trustees of the Santa Fe Institute, and was elected Chairman in 2010. In 2012 he co-founded the Game-B Network for social and political change. Jim is currently doing research related to the scientific study of consciousness. Jim received his B.S. degree in management from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1975.

Ben Huh

Founder and CEO,

A former journalist turned successful entrepreneur, Ben Huh has been credited with pioneering Internet culture as entertainment, crowdsourcing, and bringing Internet memes to the mainstream. Since first acquiring I Can Has Cheezburger? in 2007, Huh has grown the media company to now include more than 50 online humor sites that generate more than 200 million page views monthly. His Internet culture empire includes popular sites such as FAIL Blog, The Daily What, Know Your Meme and Memebase. Cheezburger has also released five books, two of which are New York Times bestsellers, and was the focus of the LOLwork reality television series, which aired on the Bravo network in 2012. The Internet culture connoisseur has been featured in many high-profile media outlets including The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Huffington Post, Mashable, WIRED, Inc., and TIME.
Esther Perel

Esther Perel

Psychotherapist and Organizational Consultant

Esther Perel is recognized as one of the world’s most original and insightful voices on personal and professional relationships. She is the best-selling author of Mating in Captivity: Unlocking Erotic Intelligence, translated into 25 languages. Fluent in nine of them, the Belgian native is a practicing psychotherapist, celebrated speaker and organizational consultant to Fortune 500 companies. The New York Times, in a cover story, named her the most important game changer on sexuality and relationships since Dr. Ruth. Her critically acclaimed viral TED talk reached nearly 5 million viewers in the first year.
Nora Abousteit

Nora Abousteit

Founder and CEO,

Nora Abousteit is the founder and CEO of Kollabora. Nora writes as a startup mentor for the WSJ’s The Accelerators blog. She is a member of the board of the Craft and Hobby Association, a mentor at Highway1 a hardware incubator, and on the panel of experts to steer Cornell Tech's new Masters of Science program in Connective Media. Before starting Kollabora, Nora reinvented an old sewing magazine into the DIY fashion community, with one million members now the largest sewing community in the world.

Ayse Birsel

Co-founder and Designer,
Birsel + Seck

Ayse Birsel has been designing award-winning products for over twenty years. She is the co-founder of Birsel + Seck, an innovative design studio in New York that partners with leading brands and Fortune 500 companies, including Target, Herman Miller, Hewlett Packard, Johnson & Johnson, Toyota and TOTO. Ayse brings new solutions to old problems by thinking differently, using her user-centered, humanistic design approach and her unique process, Deconstruction:Reconstruction™. Ayse is also known for her acclaimed workshops, Design the Life You Love for individuals and Design the Work You Love for corporations, applying her design process to help people design their life and work respectively. She is the recipient of the 2001 Young Designer Award from the Brooklyn Museum of Art, the Athena Award for Excellence in Furniture Design from Rhode Island School of Design, and numerous design awards including the IDEA Gold Award and ID Magazine Award.

James Bowthorpe

The Hudson River Project

James Bowthorpe is a modern day explorer interested in cities and the environments that surround and support them. Hudson River Project is an unprecedented journey which will see James build a boat from Manhattan’s waste, take it to the source of the Hudson in the Adirondacks and make a descent of the river back to NYC. This project is a collaboration with co-director Antony Crook, post-rock band Mogwai, Emmy award winner Ben Tricklebank, executive producers Bart Layton and Dimitri Doganis (The Imposter) and executive producer Dylan Williams (global chief strategy and innovation officer Publicis Group). In 2009 James broke the world record for circumnavigation of the globe by bicycle. He has exhibited film work at MACBA and ICA, worked for the OSCE monitoring the first democratic elections in Kosovo and is a research fellow at the Institute for Psychiatry in London.

Ben Cohen

Ben and Jerry's

In 1978, Ben and his longtime friend, Jerry Greenfield, started a homemade ice cream parlor in an old gas station in Burlington, Vermont. The ice cream was well received and after a few years, Ben & Jerry’s started to distribute pints to grocery stores in New England and eventually nationally and internationally. Along the way, Ben held the positions of scooper, crepe maker, truck driver, Director of Marketing, Sales Director, CEO, and Chairman of what became a $300 million-a-year public corporation. In 2000, despite his efforts to keep the company independent, Ben & Jerry’s was sold to Unilever. Today, Ben is President and Head Stamper at the Stamp Stampede campaign whose goal it is to help build the movement to amend the constitution to get money out of politics. The Stampede encourages people to rubber stamp paper currency with messages that say “Not to be Used for Bribing Politicians” and “Stamping Money Out of Politics”. Along with Jerry he authored the book, Ben & Jerry’s Double Dip: How to Run a Values-Led Business and Make Money, Too. In addition, Ben has served on the boards of the Social Venture Network, Hampshire College, Oxfam, Greenpeace, and Business for Social Responsibility. Currently Ben is a member of the board of directors of Heifer International and Alter Eco.

Harley K. Dubois

Co-founder and Chief Transition Officer,
Burning Man

Harley K. Dubois is a co-founder and Chief Transition Officer of the 501c-3 Burning Man Project, and currently oversees the complex transition of the Burning Man for-profit event production company into a subsidiary under the non-profit. Harley is also a founding member of the Black Rock Arts Foundation, where she chairs the grants committee and acts as the foundation's liaison with Burning Man Project. In her 20 years' involvement with Burning Man and as the former City Operations Manager, Harley led the way in developing much of Black Rock City's Community Services departments and management infrastructure. She originated Theme Camp Placement, Greeters, Playa Info, Burning Man Information Radio, and kindled the development of all other Community Services teams.

Raghava KK

Co-Founder and CEO,

Named by CNN as one of the 10 most remarkable people in 2010, Raghava KK is a renowned Indian artist and a tech entrepreneur. He was inducted into the National Geographic Society as an Emerging Explorer for bringing together science, art, and technology in the field of exploration. His iPad art book Pop­it, launched at TED, shakes up the concept of the ideal family and presents children with multiple perspectives at the earliest stage. The book won several awards, including a Best of 2011 award from Kirkus. Raghava is on the Board of the INK Conference and is the chair of the INK Fellows Program. He recently wrote the foreword for Mass General Hospital's textbook on psychiatry, in which he discusses the importance of cultural sensitivity, perspectives, and empathy in psychiatry. Currently, he is the CEO and co­-founder of Flipsicle, a tech startup out of New York and Sweden, which brings together creativity, technology, and empathy.

Ingrid Kopp

Director of Digital Initiatives,
Tribeca Film Institute

An innovator in interactive storytelling and maker culture, Ingrid Kopp oversees the TFI New Media Fund. Recent supported projects include Alma, Hollow, Lyka’s Adventure and Question Bridge. Ingrid leads the Institute’s other digital and interactive programs including the TFI Interactive conference and the Tribeca Hacks hackathon series bringing storytellers, technologists and designers together to explore new projects and collaborations. She also curates the Tribeca Storyscapes program for interactive, transmedia work at the Tribeca Film Festival. Ingrid is constantly working at the intersection between storytelling, technology, design and social change and is a frequent speaker on the subject.

Wolff Olins

John Hearn is a Global Principal at Wolff Olins. In his role, he leads teams to help clients achieve far-reaching goals and has invented new products, services, and business models from the ground up. He is co-author of The Future of Money report who continues to apply his experience to inspiring others. Amy Lee is a Senior Strategist at Wolff Olins whose strength lies in creating and leading meaningful workshops that push others to think outside of the box. Amy is a rigorous and creative thinker who uses her commercial and corporate experience to bring a fresh perspective to brand strategy and innovation. Mark Bosse is an Associate Strategist at Wolff Olins. Mark has worked on a range of strategy engagements bringing his research prowess to bear on helping complex organizations take an insights-driven approach to solving their challenges.

Zach Reeder

Project Engineer,
Scaled Composites

Zach Reeder is an award winning engineer and pilot. He has had a major role in developing and testing at least six new types of airplanes from scratch Scaled Composites and is a commercial, instrument, and multiengine rated pilot. He learned to fly from his Dad in an old Super Cub on a grass runway in the cow pasture behind the house. Zach graduated from Texas A&M in 2005 with an aerospace engineering degree. Six days after graduation he moved to Mojave to work with aerospace visionary Burt Rutan. Zach’s first solo flight was in a hang glider that he designed and built for a hundred dollars. He has flown all over the US in an RV-8 kitplane that he built while living in a 60 year old bus. Inspiration from the nine day Voyager flight led Zach to several endurance adventures including running a marathon on the sea ice at the North Pole and flying 16 hours to set a 5000 km world speed record. He now leads the team designing and building the wing for Paul Allen’s Stratolaunch, which will be the world’s largest airplane when finished.

Michael Silver

American Elements

Michael Silver is a high technology entrepreneur and Chairman & CEO of American Elements (, a global manufacturer with the world’s largest catalog of advanced materials. He is considered a pioneer in the fields of green technology, nanotechnology, materials science, robotics and space flight. He has appeared on numerous television shows and is often quoted in the New York Times, Financial Times, Wall Street Journal and many other publications. His philanthropy includes sponsoring hundreds of science & technology conferences and festivals globally and television shows such as a 4 part NOVA series on PBS entitled “Making Stuff”. American Elements has manufacturing operations in Los Angeles, California; Salt Lake City, Utah; Monterrey, Mexico; Baotou, China and Manchester, UK. Michael holds JD and MBA degrees from the University of Southern California.

Victoria Rogers


Victoria Rogers is on the Partnerships team at Kickstarter, where she works with creators and the institutions that support their work. Previously, Victoria was a Helen Rubenstein Curatorial Fellow at the Whitney Museum. She’s worked with art organizations such as Sotheby’s, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Creative Time, and Sperone Westwater Gallery. Outside Kickstarter, Victoria is on the board of the Robert F. Kennedy Young Leaders and Creative Time, and focuses on establishing art programs in low-income communities. A Chicago native, Victoria moved to Manhattan after graduating from Yale University.

Ven. Geshe Lobsang Dhargye

Buddhist Teacher,
Sera Mey Monastery

Geshe Lobsang Dhargye was born in 1969 in the Bomdilla district of the state of Arunachal Pradesh, North East India. At the age of ten, he entered Sera Mey Monastery, which is one of the largest Tibetan monasteries. He then began his long monastic training under the Venerable Gyumed Khensur Rinpoche Lobsang Jampa, his personal tutor and Spiritual Director of DNKL. Geshe-la received his ordination as a novice monk in 1982 from the late Kyabje Ling Rinpoche, the senior tutor of His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama and the 97th Throne Holder of the Gelug tradition of Tibetan Buddhism. He then received the vows of a fully ordained monk, a Bikshu, in 1994 directly from His Holiness the Dalai Lama. After 15 years of study, Geshe-la appeared for the All Gelupga Monastic University examination in 1996 and was awarded the highest monastic degree, that of Geshe Lharampa. After successfully completing studies in Buddhist Sutra, Geshe-la went to Gyumed Tantric College in 1999 to study Buddhist tantra. He received the Ngagrampa degree in Buddhist Tantric Studies. Geshe Dhargye is a gifted Buddhist teacher who has taught not only in Sera Mey Monastery but also in the West and is now the Resident Teacher at Do Ngak Kunphen Ling in Redding, CT.

Anahita Moghaddam

Founder, Neural Beings,
Ambassador, The Tibet Fund

Anahita is the founder of Neural Beings and an emerging talent in the field of coaching and leadership development. Her dynamic and experiential coaching style draws on contemporary neuroscience, psychology and mindfulness. With an academic background in Social Anthropology from SOAS in London, the Iranian-German coach (and trained Sufi dancer), is committed to fostering a new leadership style, marked by leaders with distinct minds and purpose driven lives. Anahita has worked in media and personal development around the world, interviewing senior political and business leaders and gaining insight into the unique mindsets of influential people. Working closely with neuroscientists and psychologists, Anahita’s methodology focuses on training the mind to foster positive habits and wholesome mental states, which change the structure and function of the brain towards integration. Anahita is an ambassador to the Tibet Fund, a humanitarian organization under the patronage of H.H the 14th Dalai Lama, serving Tibetan refugees in India, Nepal and Bhutan.
I was gifted the results of a customized haiku battle, had a conversation about consciousness, created a human synthesizer performance of a Michael Jackson song, played with magical papercraft art, brainstormed with people who are passionate about learning technology, and danced with a mob in a train station. Not your average conference.
Robin Chase, Founder of Zipcar