Speakers 2015

Emily Calandrelli

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Emily Calandrelli is a producer and the host of FOX’s Xploration Outer Space, a nationally syndicated educational program about the space industry. She is also a writer for TechCrunch where she covers technology topics with a focus on commercial space companies.

Emily enjoys writing, speaking, and posting on her social media (@TheSpaceGal) on the topics of science literacy, space exploration, and equality in STEM fields.

Ben Brabson

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Ben Brabson graduated from Carleton College in 1960 in Physics. He then studied at MIT where he received a PhD in physics focusing his thesis on High Energy Physics in 1966. Since 1968 Ben has been a physics professor at Indiana University researching high energy physics from 1968 to 1996 and then researching climate change from 1996 till the present.

Alyssa Monks

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Alyssa Monks’s paintings have been the subject of numerous solo and group exhibitions including “Intimacy” at the Kunst Museum in Ahlen, Germany and “Reconfiguring the Body in American Art, 1820–2009” at the National Academy Museum of Fine Arts, New York. Her work is represented in public and private collections, including the Savannah College of Arts, the Somerset Art Association, Fullerton College, the Seavest Collection and the collections of  Alec Baldwin, and Luciano Benetton. Alyssa currently lives and paints in Brooklyn, New York.

Sylvia McNair

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Two-time Grammy Award-winner Sylvia McNair is equally at home on the stages of Lincoln Center and Carnegie Hall and in the intimate environs of the Rainbow Room and the Algonquin’s legendary Oak Room, performing both classical and cabaret, opera and Broadway musicals. Her more than 70 recordings range from Mozart arias with Sir Neville Marriner and the Academy of St.-Martin-in-the-Fields to CDs with Andre Previn of music by Jerome Kern and Harold Arlen.

Jeff Nelsen

One of the many Indiana University professors who is a Canadian pig-farm-raised magician horn player, Jeff Nelsen is a proud TEDx alum. Since giving his celebrated 2011 TEDx Talk about Fearless Performance, Jeff has been training/tricking fellow TED Talkers, teachers, athletes, musicians, and business people into giving their own Fearless Performances as well. Jeff was the hornist with Canadian Brass, has performed concerti on 6 continents, for a year on Broadway, and with the New York and LA philharmonics.

Beth Meyerson

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Beth Meyerson has been involved with public health policy and systems for the past 20 years with a focus on sexual health. She serves as Co-Director of the Rural Center for AIDS/STD Prevention, as well as Policy Director for Cervical Cancer-Free Coalition.

Dr. Meyerson’s studies focus on public health policy behaviors such as state investments in sexual health, policy behaviors of local health departments and state STD programs, and planned policy behaviors expressed in state comprehensive cancer plans.

Ceasar McDowell

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Ceasar McDowell has a deep and abiding passion for figuring out how people who are systematically marginalized by society have the opportunity to voice their lived experiences to the world.

Ceasar founded MIT’s Co-Lab, where he developed the “critical moments reflection” method to help communities build knowledge from their practice. He co-founded the global civic engagement organization, Engage The Power. At MIT, Ceasar teaches on civic and community engagement and the use of social media to enhance both.

Steve Fleischli

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Steve Fleischli is a graduate of UCLA School of Law and has served as President of Waterkeeper Alliance. Since November 2012, Steve Fleischli has led NRDC’s national Water Program with a strategic objective to secure safe and sufficient water for people and ecosystems. Steve also served as Executive Director of Waterkeeper Alliance and as the Santa Monica Baykeeper in Los Angeles. He is also the author of two novels: My Sweet Butterfly and Complicit. Steve Fleischli is a Senior Attorney and Director of the Water Program at the Natural Resources Defense Council.

Henry Hertzfeld

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Dr. Hertzfeld is an expert in the economic, legal, and policy issues of space and advanced technological development. His research projects have included studies on the privatization of the Space Shuttle, the economic benefits of NASA R&D expenditures, and the socioeconomic impacts of earth observation technologies. Dr. Hertzfeld has served as a Senior Economist and Policy Analyst at both NASA and the National Science Foundation, and has been a consultant to many U.S. and international organizations.