Meet Our Speakers

HELENA NORBERG-HODGE is a pioneer of the new economy movement and recipient of both the Alternative Nobel prize and the Goi Peace Prize. She is the producer of the award- winning The Economics of Happiness and author of the inspirational classic Ancient Futures. Helena is the founder and director of Local Futures (formerly ISEC) and The International Alliance for Localisation, and a founding member of the International Commission on the Future of Food and Agriculture, the International Forum on Globalization and the Global Ecovillage Network.


RICHARD HEINBERG is Senior Fellow of Post Carbon Institute and is widely regarded as one of the world’s foremost advocates for a shift away from our current reliance on fossil fuels. He has authored 13 books and written for Nature, Wall Street Journal, Reuters, and Christian Science Monitor among other publications. He has delivered hundreds of lectures on energy and climate issues to audiences around the world.



DAVID KORTEN is co-founder and board chair of YES! Magazine, co-chair of the New Economy Working Group, president of the Living Economies Forum, an associate fellow of the Institute for Policy Studies, and a member of the Club of Rome. His books include the international best-seller When Corporations Rule the World and Agenda for a New Economy.




JUDY WICKS is an activist and entrepreneur who founded Philadelphia’s iconic White Dog Cafe in 1983, and became a pioneer in the local food movement, as well as a model in sustainable business practices. She is a national leader in the new economy movement and founder of Fair Food Philly (2000) and the Sustainable Business Network of Greater Philadelphia (2001) and cofounder of the nationwide Business Alliance for Local Living Economies – BALLE (2001).



SARAH VAN GELDER is YES! Magazine Co-Founder and Editor at Large, a public speaker, and the author of the new book, The Revolution Where You Live: Stories from a 12,000 Mile Journey Through a New America (Berrett Koehler, 2017). She is also the editor of Sustainable Happiness: Living Simply, Live Well, Make a Difference, and This Changes Everything: Occupy Wall Street and the 99 Percent Movement (both with Berrett Koehler).



JOHN DE GRAAF is a filmmaker and the co-author of Affluenza: The All-Consuming Epidemic and What’s The Economy For, Anyway? He is the co-founder and president of Take Back Your Time and co-founder and communications officer for the Happiness Alliance. He is a board member of Earth Island Institute and a frequent contributor to many journals. He has been involved with happiness issues for eight years, including work with the former Prime Minister of Bhutan and the current Happiness Director of the United Arab Emirates. He has spoken about happiness research in the US, Canada, Hungary, Brazil, Italy, the UK and the UAE.


RACHEL MAXWELL works to create real value and a thriving economy. She co-founded Community Sourced Capital a community-based crowd sourced lending platform that helps people share their money with businesses they know and love. In three years CSC deployed almost two million dollars in 100 loans to neighborhood businesses involving over 6000 people. Rachel believes money and value are not necessarily equivalent and CSC makes that manifest by providing community returns on investment.


JOHN LUPINACCI is the assistant Professor of Cultural Studies and Thought in Education. John Lupinacci’s research focuses on how people, specifically educators, learn to both identify and examine destructive habits of modern human culture. His work proposes that, through education, teachers can be leaders in confronting dominant assumptions about existing as individuals separate from and superior to the greater ecological systems to which we belong.


VICKI ROBIN is co-author of the perennial best-seller, Your Money or Your Life, and author of the new book, Blessing the Hands that Feed Us; lessons from a 10-Mile Diet. She created the 10-Day Local Food Challenge to help eaters kick-start their local food shift.






MICHAEL ABLEMAN is a farmer, author, photographer and urban and local food systems advocate. Michael has been farming organically since the early 1970′s and is considered one of the pioneers of the organic farming and urban agriculture movements. Ableman is the author of four trade published books: From the Good Earth: A Celebration of Growing Food Around the World; On Good Land: The Autobiography of an Urban Farm; Fields of Plenty: A Farmer’s Journey in search of Real Food and the People Who Grow It; and most recently, Street Farm: Growing Food, Jobs, and Hope on the Urban Frontier.


DERIC GRUEN manages the Rethinking Prosperity project at the University of Washington Center for Communication and Civic Engagement. He consults on initiatives at the intersections of equity, environment, and the economy. Current projects include Front and Centered, a coalition working for equitable and effective state climate policy in Washington State and the Seattle Good Business Network’s Local Economy Leaders Lab. Deric is a Board member of the Sustainable Consumption Research and Action Initiative (SCORAI).


BRANDY GALLAGHER is the founder of OUR Ecovillage in Shawnigan Lake, British Columbia, a 25-acre demonstration site deeply committed to the principles of Permaculture design, both in terms of our land systems and also how we interact with each other (social permaculture).

Special Guests


LARKIN STENTZ has been the steward of Green Angel Gardens organic farm and sustainable living center for the last 11 years in Long Beach Washington. During this time over 125 interns and woofers from around the world have trained there. Over the past 20 years Larkin has taught Bio-intensive food production in elementary schools, high schools, and junior colleges. He is a board member of Washington Tilth Producers, a concert and recording artist, writer and devoted spiritual seeker.



LAURENCE COLE has the extrordianry gift of bringing people together in group song. Part of his mission is to re-acquaint people with their birthright and natural ability to make beautiful and meaningful sound together. Group singing is one of the most ancient and primal ‘technologies of belonging’ that we humans have been using since our earliest times, possibly before speech itself. When we make joyous and passionate song together, it nourishes our souls and offers an enlivening gift back to the natural world that made us and gives us our sustenance and our very being.