Speaking Matters: Speakers Bureau, Public Speakers

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Speaking Matters

Zainab Al-Suwaij

Al-Suwaij, Co founder and Executive Director of the American Islamic Congress, is currently working on a number of programs, including how to combat violent extremism, Muslim's concerns after the election, the Middle East after ISIS, and women's rights. The AIC's principles include: American Muslims must champion pluralism and condemn all forms of intolerance, must be ambassadors to the Muslim world, must recognize and celebrate their own diversity, encourage social and economic prosperity, and protect the rights of minorities in the Muslims world.
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Speaking Matters

Paula Allen

Allen was in Appalachia during the presidential vote, photographing at polling stations between southwest Virginia and Kentucky. Her visit was part of a long-term project, begun in the 1980s, documenting the decline of coal towns.

She recently traveled to Haiti for the Artists Business Network to photograph artists (metal, soapstone, tobacco leaf and textiles) who are trying to get back on their feet after Hurricane Mathew destroyed the southern part of the island.

Allen is traveling to Kurdistan for the organizations Voices of the Yezidi and One Billion Rising to document women escapees from Isis and to record stories of the war and oral histories of the Yezidi people who have been attacked relentlessly.

In February, UNEAC (the artists and writers union of Cuba) will publish Allen's book about Isolina, a tarot card reader in Old Havana. The book will be presented during the international Book Fair of Havana and will be accompanied by an exhibit.
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Speaking Matters

Marc Ian Barasch

Barasch is known for his bold concept of "The Regenerative Society," a compassionate "people-and-planet" approach that goes far beyond sustainability. A regenerative model is evolving, he believes, across all sectors from environment to industry and finance to education, justice, technology, and culture, and is our only hope to get through the "evolutionary bottleneck" of our current civilization.

Barasch has also been an advocate of "eco-spirituality," recently presenting his Green World Charter in a keynote at the Parliament of the World's Religions to an audience of 10,000 delegates from 80 countries and 50 faith traditions.

He founded Green World Ventures to start a transformative "regenerative food industry" in Nigeria to cultivate "superfood" moringa trees to provide protein to Africa and the world while restoring degraded land and alleviating poverty and hunger. 
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Speaking Matters

Tal Ben-Shahar

Ben-Shahar is Co-Founder and Chief Learning Officer of the leadership development program Potentialife which recently hit a milestone by signing up its 50th client organization. Potentialife supports organizations to enable their strategy through leadership development at all levels. Its work is powered by a nine-month leadership development solution — which leverages the latest in leadership research, behavioral change and technology to allow tens, hundreds and thousands of people develop into more productive, authentic, energetic, engaged and inspirational leaders across organizations simultaneously.

Ben-Shahar's Happier.TV is a multi-media platform that brings happiness to life through videos and practical content. The site was recently redesigned and relauched.
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Speaking Matters

Beatrice Fernando

Fernando describes her heartbreaking experience as a victim of human trafficking in her memoir, In Contempt of Fate. She recounts being tricked into becoming a domestic slave in Lebanon, being held prisoner, and her decision to choose freedom by risking her life in a dramatic escape.
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Speaking Matters

Ellen Langer

Langer is Professor of Psychology at Harvard University and founder of The Langer Mindfulness Institute which provides consulting, workshops and lectures. She is the recipient of four Distinguished Scientist Awards and, most recently, the Liberty Science Genius Award. Known as the "Mother of Mindfulness," she has written 12 books, including the best-seller, Mindfulness, and over 200 research papers.
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Speaking Matters

Sonja Lyubomirsky

World-renowned happiness researcher Sonja Lyubomirsky's current research findings include:

  • Kind acts influence the body: California community members who were asked to do acts of kindness over the course of 4 weeks not only felt more connected to other people but showed changes in their gene expression profiles associated with stronger immune function.
  • Make someone else happy: Young people were prompted to choose a person in their life to make happier over the course of 4 weeks. Those who did not only made the other person happier, but became happier themselves, in part because the exercise made them feel more connected, grateful, competent, and in control.
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Mark Matousek

Mark Matousek

Matousek continues to expand his personal transformation writing program through online offerings and personal appearances around the world.

His much anticipated book Writing To Awaken: A Journey of Truth, Transformation, and Self-Discovery is slated for release by New Harbinger in July, 2017. Writing to Awaken is an inspirational investigation of the self through expressive writing, guiding the reader along the path of awakening through radical truth-telling and self-inquiry.

His new four-part teaching series on the transformative power of story for Mindvalley will be released in Spring, 2017.
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Public Speaker Sara Mednick, Ph.D. with Speaking Matters, a speakers bureau

Sara Mednick

Sara Mednick, psychology professor at the University of California, Riverside, and a sleep expert, wants to help you sleep better – and is offering a free online course: How to Sleep Better and The Secret Power of Naps through AARP's Life Reimagined program to help you do so. In a number of short videos over 1.5 hours, Dr. Mednick explains how sleep works and, with a specific emphasis on the secret power of napping, guides you in developing practices for getting more and better sleep.
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Speaking Matters

Kim Rosen

Rosen's The Safe House Education College Fund, (SHE Fund), helps Maasai girls escaping the tribal traditions of Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) and early childhood marriage, and provides them with primary and secondary education, a right denied women in the Maasai tradition. Every year, 6-10 girls from the Safe House graduate secondary school and transform their families and communities by becoming the first females in their villages to go beyond primary school. The SHE Fund is the next step, offering support for two years of college to those students who choose to continue with their education.
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Speaking Matters

Deborah Siegel

Siegel continues to create The Pink & Blue Diaries, a multimedia experiment in thinking aloud, and in community, about the gendering of earliest childhood which, over time, has included a series of illustrated essays, Live Lit performances, Tumblr, Pinterest, reflections and interviews with experts at Girl w/Pen, as well as public panels and conversations.
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Speaking Matters

MoniCa Singh

Singh's story of resilience is featured in the new comic book PRIYA'S MIRROR, which focuses on acid attacks and tackles the problem of sexual violence in India and around the world. Singh shares her story of surviving a brutal acid attack to become a fashion designer and UN Women's Global Youth Champion. She is joined in the comic by acid attack survivors from New York City, Bogota, and New Delhi. "As one of the characters in Priya's Mirror, and through my own endeavors; I hope to inspire other women who have gone through similar violent attacks to find courage and confidence," says Singh.
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Maria Sirois

Maria Sirois

Courses based on Sirois' new book, A Short Course in Happiness After Loss (and Other Dark, Difficult Times) will be offered throughout 2017 in the U.S. and abroad as she deepens her exploration of resilience and the science of Positive Psychology.

Sirois and author Mark Matousek are joining together to offer a new workshop at The Garrison Institute: "WRITING TO AWAKEN: Exploring Loneliness, Sadness, Self-Reliance, and the Riddle of Intimate Relationship."
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Speaking Matters

Alison Wright

Wright recently returned from a photo shoot in the Maldives, the 150th country she has traveled to and one of her favorite new places in the world because of its natural beauty. Wright also led a photo tour in Bhutan for National Geographic and traveled to Nepal to shoot a story for them. Her travel plans for 2017 are just unfolding now and promise to include countries near and far.
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