Eric Dawson, Co-founder and President, Peace First
Eric Dawson is the co-founder and President of Peace First, an organization he helped launch when he was just 18. Peace First works on the twin challenges of youth violence and disengagement by preparing young children with the skills to be peacemakers. For over two decades, Peace First has successfully taught the critical skills of peacemaking (conflict resolution and civic engagement skills) to young people ages 3 – 14, providing training in 32 states and 23 countries. With extremely promising data (a 60% decrease in disruptive incidences at schools, 81% of students reporting they can walk away from a fight), the organization is exponentially increasing its reach and impact. Read more
Kate Brown, Oregon Secretary of State
Kate Brown was born in Torrejón de Ardoz, Spain. After spending most of her childhood in Minnesota, Brown earned a B.A. in Environmental Conservation with a certificate in Women's Studies from the University of Colorado at Boulder. She earned her law degree and Certificate in Environmental Law from Lewis and Clark College in Portland, OR.
Brown has taught at Portland State University, and practiced family and juvenile law. She was appointed to the Oregon House of Representatives in 1991 and in 1996, after winning election to two more House terms, won election to the Oregon Senate. Two years later, she was elected Senate Democratic Leader and in 2004, senators made her the first woman to serve as Oregon's Senate Majority Leader. In 2008, she was elected Oregon's 24th Secretary of State. Read More.
Master of Ceremonies
David Sawyer, President, Context
David Sawyer is a strategy guy for a better world. He worked with the White House to help launch the nation’s Americorps program, with the Dalai Lama on a Tibetan Refugee Education Project, and with National Geographic to create a global network to save the ocean. Read more
FUNDING FOR IMPACT:
Gun Denhart, Co-founder, Hanna Andersson
Gun Denhart, a native of Sweden, founded the Hanna Andersson children's clothing company in 1983 in the garage of her Portland home. Through her leadership, the company became known for its quality, cotton clothing, family-friendly employee policies and innovative contributions to the community through non-profit and school partnerships. She pioneered, and was nationally recognized for, many family-friendly work place policies including childcare reimbursements for employees and flexible working hours. Read more
Carolynn Duncan, Founder, NW Social Venture Fund
Melissa Durham, Director of Strategic Projects, Oregon Community Foundation
Melissa currently serves as the Director of Strategic Projects for The Oregon Community Foundation. She is leading the board’s effort to implement two new Initiatives. One is focused on creating jobs and improving Oregon’s economy; the other is focused on improving children’s dental health in Oregon. She also directs the Regional Action Initiative for OCF, an $8M statewide initiative launched in 2008. Prior to working for OCF, she directed a national health promotion program for high school athletes at Oregon Health and Science University. Melissa earned her Master of Public Health degree at Portland State University and is proud to be a native Oregonian.
Scott Onder, Sr. Manager of Lending and Capitalization Strategy, Mercy Corps NW
Rick Turoczy (@turoczy) has been working in startups in Portland for nearly 20 years. As founder and editor of Silicon Florist, he has blogged about the Portland startup scene for more than five years, even though numerous people have begged him to stop. That side project led Rick to cofound PIE (the Portland Incubator Experiment), a startup accelerator formed in partnership with global advertising firm Wieden+Kennedy, creators of "Just Do It," the Old Spice Guy, and the agency of record for Facebook. Those efforts led him to cofound TechFestNW, a tech event run in collaboration with Willamette Week and MusicFestNW, which has been dubbed "the next SXSW" by Fortune magazine. Read more
Kazi Huque, CEO, Grameen Intel
Kazi Huque is the CEO of Grameen Intel Social Business Ltd. He has more than 12 years of experience with Intel Corporation as a Finance Controller with financial and investment management responsibilities. In 2009 he lead the startup of the Grameen Intel company focused on developing solutions for social and economic problems using information technology.
Kazi Huque has a bachelors in applied mathematics, computer science and an MBA from the University of Rochester.
Franklin Jones, Founder/CEO, B-Line Sustainable Urban Delivery
Franklin Jones founded B-line in 2008 to address the need for an alternative delivery and advertising solution for urban centers. A formal genealogy of B-Line began with Franklin’s first “real” job out of school as a bicycle and pedestrian planner in Bend, OR for David Evans and Associates. The concept silently percolated over a thirteen-month, 10K bicycle trip from Japan to Ireland and then had some time to rest as Franklin entered a rewarding career in education as a sixth grade teacher in the SF Bay Area. Read more
Lindsey Newkirk, Owner and Chief Instigator, Junk to Funk Trashion Collective
Lindsey has established a name for herself in the Portland community for her collaborative efforts in waste reduction through social entrepreneurship. Not being able to find her “high impact dream job”, in 2006, Lindsey founded two businesses; Junk to Funk Tashion Collective; a runway production turned “Eco-Edutainment” company that uses Avant-garde trash fashion (Trashion) to get people to think differently about their relationship to “stuff”, and Elysium Events; an event greening company with a focus on “working towards zero waste”. Read more
Jacob Sherman (moderator), Alumnus and Undergraduate Research, Engagement, and Creative Activities (URECA) Coordinator, Portland State University
Jacob Sherman works for the Institute for Sustainable Solutions at Portland State University, where he promotes a stronger integration of sustainability into the curriculum. He has been advancing sustainability at PSU since 2009, providing leadership in the university’s nationally recognized Take Back the Tap campaign, President Wim Wiewel’s Sustainable Drinking Water Task Force, and the University Studies Peer Mentor Program. In 2011, Jacob was awarded both the PSU and the State of Oregon Student Employee of the Year awards. In 2012, Jacob spoke to more than 25,000 people as a student speaker at PSU’s commencement ceremony. Read more
Ed Blackburn, Executive Director, Central City Concern
Ed Blackburn is the Executive Director of Central City Concern (CCC), a 501(c)(3) nonprofit agency in Portland, Oregon whose mission is providing comprehensive solutions to ending homelessness
and achieving self-sufficiency. CCC serves single adults and families who are impacted by
homelessness, poverty and addictions. CCC has developed a comprehensive continuum of over
1,500 units of supportive housing, integrated with primary healthcare, mental health services,
addictions treatment, recovery services, and employment. In 2009 Ed was one of 49 people from around the world to be awarded an Unsung Heroes of
Compassion Award by the Dalai Lama and the Wisdom in Action foundation.
John Shepherd, Co-founder and President, M25 Ventures
M25 Ventures is a social enterprise non-profit helping citizens with employment barriers achieve economic sustainability and personal growth through entrepreneurship. The primary mission of M25 Ventures is to reduce recidivism among reentering inmates and recovering addicts by helping them launch and operate sustainable small businesses. Read more
Betsy Langton, Founder, Betsy's Best Bar None
EDUCATION FOR IMPACT:
Jeanne Enders (moderator), Associate Dean of Undergraduate Programs, Portland State University School of Business Administration
Jeanne Enders is currently the Associate Dean of Undergraduate Programs in the School of Business at Portland State University. She has been with the University since 1998. Jeanne earned undergraduate degrees in Psychology and German Literature at Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma, Washington. She studied as a Rotary Graduate Scholar at the Karl-Franzens University in Graz, Austria, and then earned her Master's and Doctoral degrees in Social and Organizational Psychology at the University of Chicago. Jeanne’s primary interests have to do with understanding how business can generate meaningful workplaces, products, business models and services. She teaches in the areas of organizational behavior and business ethics. She is currently researching life stories and ethics perspectives of business ethics award winners in the region. Read more
Sona K. Andrews, Provost, Portland State University
Sona Karentz Andrews is currently the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs at Portland State University. In that role she is the chief academic officer of the University, working with faculty, deans, and other administrators to achieve the academic mission and vision of the University. Dr. Andrews completed her undergraduate degree in Geography from Worcester State College in Massachusetts and her Master’s and Ph.D. in Geography from Arizona State University. She has held faculty positions at the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Boise State University, and now at Portland State University. Read more
Mark Holloway, Executive Director, Social Venture Partners Portland
Dwayne Johnson, President and CEO, IDEAL Portland
Dwayne Johnson is a successful serial entrepreneur and investor with deep experience in management, information technology, professional services and finance. He is Managing Partner of Globe Three Ventures, a strategy, business process and management consultancy working with clients to identify partners, develop strategic relationships and secure funding for their high growth potential/impact businesses. He is President of IDEAL Portland, a nonprofit focused on increasing the number of innovation entrepreneurs from underrepresented minority populations. Read more
Erin Tochen, Program Officer, The Lemelson Foundation
Erin Tochen is a Program Officer at The Lemelson Foundation, a private family foundation that inspires and enables the next generation of inventors and invention-based enterprises in order to promote US economic growth, and helps solve social and economic problems for the poorest populations in developing countries. Erin manages a portion of the US program that focuses on building and supporting a pipeline of young inventors through informal education programs; she is also developing the Foundation’s new program in Oregon which mirrors the goals of the broader national work. Additionally, she manages several international partnerships that focus on developing low-cost technologies aimed at solving global problems. Read more
MEDIA FOR IMPACT:
Christina Williams (moderator), Director of Communications, Institute for Sustainable Solutions at Portland State University
Christina Dyrness Williams is the director of sustainability communications at Portland State University. Throughout her career she has focused on the narrative of the economy, business and sustainability, both as a journalist and as a communications strategist. Her current focus is on building the capacity of sustainability and social entrepreneurship at PSU with the end goal of creating a better region and a better world. Christina was the founding editor of Sustainable Business Oregon, a publication of the Portland Business Journal. Her journalism work has landed her byline in publications including Oregon Business magazine, The Oregonian, the News & Observer in Raleigh, N.C., and many others.
Phil Busse, Executive Director, Media Institute for Social Change
Former attorney and founding Managing Editor for the Portland Mercury, Phil Busse recently took the position as Editor for The Source, a weekly paper in Bend. He also continues to serve as the Executive Director for an educational nonprofit, the Media Institute for Social Change and is an adjunct instructor at Portland State.
Andy Giegerich, Editor, Sustainable Business Oregon
Cassandra Profita, Ecotrope Journalist Blogger, Oregon Public Broadcasting