Melissa (Green) Sutor, MS, MA is the Director of Happiness and Founder of Dragonfly Center whose mission is to facilitate the healing and transformation of individuals and our planet. She is highly trained in MBSR (Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction) and teaches mindfulness meditations and self-care. Melissa created the diverse Dragonfly community to provide safe, nurturing environments for people of all walks of life to gain more awareness, heal holistically, and cultivate the well-being of the whole person, inspiring people to reconnect with their light within and discover their meaning, purpose, and true happiness in life. She is a wisdom-based entrepreneur working with individuals in private sessions as well as with corporations, schools, health organizations and nonprofits. She offers classes, trainings, workshops, events, and retreats while consulting with others on how to do the same. Melissa is an expert in living truly happy! Being raised in a single-parent home below the poverty level in rural Alabama, Melissa embraced education and became the first in her family to go to college. She then trail-blazed her way to higher education and became the first African-American to earn an advanced degree in the Computer Science and Engineering department at the University of Notre Dame. She wrote a pioneering thesis and created a voice-activated mouse for the physically disabled; the research was recognized in Scientific American magazine.
She then worked in Silicon Valley as an engineer, project manager and consultant in high tech fields. Realizing that she was not truly happy or living her authentic self, Melissa left her successful career and embarked on a two-year backpacking trip spanning over 50 countries. While trekking around the world, interacting with diverse peoples and cultures, Melissa pondered some of life’s major questions – “Who am I?” and “Why am I here?”. Returning back to the United States, she followed a calling to return to school and reinvent herself. Melissa received her second Masters, this time in Counseling Psychology from Santa Clara University with a specialization in Health Psychology. With a heartfelt commitment of service, she shares inspiration, motivation, humor and compassion through her authentic way of being to catalyze change and transformation.
Melissa has worked as a consultant and contributor to many organizations including Wisdom 2.0, Wisdom Women, Project Happiness, Mission Be, Mindful Schools, Spirit Rock Meditation Center, Mindful Cloud Entertainment, Sonima Foundation and Stanford Mindfulness Department, Jikoji Zen Center, Venture Retreat Center, Family Connections and the East Palo Alto community. Melissa is blessed to be a part of the Wisdompreneurs community, serving as an Advisor and leader in Diversity and Inclusion. She is living a happy life in Maui, Hawaii immersed in beautiful nature with a loving husband, lots of laughter, delicious food, and frequent visits to the spa. www.dragonflycenter.org
Melinda Briana Epler
Ariana Satayathum would probably not say this about herself, her humility is only surpassed by her beauty, no wait, it’s her brain, no wait it’s her heart, no wait…
As the Creative Architect of Wisdompreneurs SHIFT2016 event series and other upcoming WP experiences, I and Wisdompreneurs see Ariana as a true Creative Director and Goddess of Ceremonies.
Ariana is a design alchemist. Her ability to not only transform space but to also create unique experiences is truly revolutionary.
Ariana can create or redefine any arena to match the intended vision Be it contemporary, sensual, traditional, spiritual or…
No matter the call, her work results in a vibrant and novel mosaic, embodying the very essence of the desired experience; one that entices and engages all of our senses.
Ariana is also a master in the art of co-creation. Dancing beautifully between the lines of bringing her client’s vision to life or designing their vision through her mastery as an active listener and visionary of what is being called forward.
Her designs come from the heart and soul of a true artist, one that is grounded in nature and whose vision and creation emerges from the ground of her being.
Sumayyah Emeh Edu
Sumayyah Emeh-Edu has almost 15 years’ experience within the K12, Higher Education and Corporate sectors directing diversity and professional development objectives. Serving in a variety of capacities including business development, program management and training, Sumayyah also has extensive leadership experience. Overall, her expertise lies in driving results for career and organizational development.
Hailing from organizations such as Laureate Education, Kaplan Test Prep and the Keller Center for Corporate Learning, Sumayyah noted systemic inequities throughout the education-workforce pipeline, increasing her desire to create change. Serving now as the VP of Strategy and Programming for Tech Inclusion (a Change Catalyst initiative), she is able to drive diversity and inclusion support in the tech community through her responsibilities of conference planning, building strategic alliances and consulting.
Sumayyah holds a BA in Communications and has completed coursework for a Masters in HR Management. She is a member and active supporter of ASTD Golden Gate Chapter and National Diversity Council, and DpointI. She also has volunteered with various community organizations that widen access for disadvantaged youth to access education such as CollegeBound, AVID and UpwardBound. www.techinclusion.co
Wayne Sutton is a serial entrepreneur and co-founder of Tech Inclusion. Tech Inclusion is dedicated to exploring innovative solutions to diversity and inclusion in tech through the Tech Inclusion Conference, consulting and workshops. Wayne’s experience includes years of establishing partnerships with large brands to early stage startups. As a leading voice in diversity and inclusion in tech, Wayne shares his thoughts on solutions and culture in various media outlets where he has been featured in TechCrunch, USA Today, and The Wall Street Journal. In addition to mentoring and advising early stage startups, Wayne’s life goal is to educate entrepreneurs who are passionate about using technology to change the world. Wayne Sutton writes about entrepreneurship, startups, diversity & inclusion in tech at SocialWayne.com.
Wayne has over 14 years experience in technology, design and business development. Wayne was recently recognized as one of the Silicon Valley 100 coolest people in tech, one of the 52 hottest new stars in Silicon Valley, one of the 46 Most Important African-Americans In Technology by Business Insider and one of the Top 100 most influential black people on social media in 2014.
In 2014 Wayne co-founded BUILDUP, a non-profit designed to support an inclusive ecosystem of entrepreneurs through educational workshops and fellows program for underrepresented tech founders. In 2011, Wayne co-founded the NewMe Accelerator, the first minority led startup accelerator/incubator in Silicon Valley which was featured in CNN Black in America 4. Prior to NewMe he worked in media in Raleigh, NC for NBC17 and the News and Observer. In 2009 Wayne was the co-founder of TriOut, a mobile location-based startup in Raleigh, NC which exited. Wayne has worked with large brands, Inc 500 companies and advises several technology startups. With a passion for community Wayne has organized Social Media Conferences, tech meetups, and hackathons such as the world’s first Food Hackathon, which assembled leading food innovators, chefs, developers, designers and entrepreneurs to collaborate on solutions in the food ecosystem.
Wayne has been featured on CNN, BBC, USA Today, TechCrunch, Mashable, Black Enterprise, and various online media outlets. Being an early adopter Wayne was one of the first 1000 users on Twitter which as lead to a loyal following not only on Twitter, but Facebook and Google+. His blog SocialWayne.com has been ranked one of the 50 best technology and social media blogs in the world over the years.
Wayne is a past TED attendee in 2012. With a passion for education and story telling, Wayne has spoken at several universities and major internet and technology focused conferences such as Stanford, UC Berkeley, Duke, UNC, NC State, TEDx, World Wide Web(WWW) Conference, O’Reilly Web 2.0 Expo, South By South West (SXSW), DockerCon 2015 and for the U.S. Embassy Jamaica during Global Entrepreneurship Week 2015.
Belinda Liu is a teacher, connector, creator and explorer. For over a decade, she worked tirelessly in the urban public education system to create thriving environments for students to learn and teachers to collaborate. Belinda has led powerful adult transformations built on cycles of reflection, continuous learning, and behavior change.LEARN MORE
She is the co-founder and CEO of HiveQuest, a startup on a mission to use technology for human betterment and social good. She and her team create supportive, sacred spaces for people to explore the things they deeply care about, connect meaningfully with others, and grow beyond their wildest imagination.
Nick is a business, social & leadership breakthrough expert and the creator of Breakthrough Biodynamics, a theory and toolset for creating and sustaining positive change in any human system. It unifies cutting-edge science with timeless wisdom and practical tools from entrepreneurship. Nick uses this framework as a wisdom teacher, international keynote speaker and author (latest book – Switch On: Unleash Your Creativity & Thrive, April 2015). He is the wisdom-led entrepreneur behind pioneering leadership & innovation consultancy WECREATE Worldwide and start-up www.ripeandready.com
Nick’s work is rooted in 20 years research and practice begun at Cambridge University (Triple First Class degree in Medicine and Philosophy of Science). He has advised orgs like Microsoft, Oxfam, Genentech, Nike and No.10; lectured at Yale, Oxford, LBS, UC Berkeley and SciencePo; spoken at Aspen Ideas Festival, The Economist Summit, Towards A Science of Consciousness & Science FOO; & teaches “Science for Change-Agents”. He is a UK Ambassador for Entrepreneurship, FRSA, presented a 4-part TV show on BBC and coached a celeb on MTV. He has trained social entrepreneurs on 4 continents and gave a keynote at the EU/China Summit on Social Enterprise. Nick started his first company, a global brand & innovation agency, aged 24 where he helped launch Xbox globally, develop the 7-year innovation roadmap for Unilever laundry and innovate BBC’s Dancing with Stars (the most successful TV show of all time). After a series of life-changing breakthroughs as an entrepreneur and leader, he has focused his consulting work on next-level leadership development and sustainable innovation; and building out Ripe & Ready, a wisdom, wellbeing and world-change media and education company for the digital generations. Called a ‘glam spiritual activist’ by The Sunday Times, Nick has appeared in / on MTV, BBC News, Telegraph, Cosmopolitan, Guardian, Hay House Radio, CBS, Daily Mail & more. www.nickjankel.com/
Les brings 4 generations of retail experience and knowledge as the Great Grandson of the founder of the Walgreen Co. Starting as a stock boy in 1984, Les created Walgreens.com in 1995 while working for the company. With the entrepreneurial genes of his great grandfather, Les has been involved in such areas as film, real estate, product placement and more now coming back full circle to the luxury retail market.
Lisa Rueff is a enthusiastic entrepreneur who loves creating ways to empower, celebrate and connect people to their purpose and passions. Lisa is currently developing a board game focusing on igniting purpose and potential in the players, and will be launching on Kickstarter in late Spring of 2016. She is CEO & Founder of YogaVentures, a global humanitarian retreat company that provides participants the opportunity to embark on meaningful, sustainable yoga volunteer retreats worldwide. Lisa has been leading international trips for over 15 years and encourages her students to discover the joys of travel with purpose and how each of us can make a tangible and sustainable difference. She has raised over a million dollars for global causes, focusing on sustainable solutions to provide basic needs for women and children. Lisa founded and built a 12,000 sq. ft home and school for earthquake-orphaned children in Haiti, The Jacmel Children Center, www.jacmelchildren.org. She has also built a free medical clinic in Haiti called Angel Wings, and works with Faith and Love Orphanage and Art Creation Foundation For Children in Haiti.
Lisa served as a consultant for Virgin Unite, where she organized and facilitated Virgin Unite Connection Trips with Sir Richard Branson to South Africa and Her Majesty Queen Noor to Jordan. During these trips, participant focused engaged with these inspiring frontline leaders whose work with entrepreneurial communities are driving change. Lisa also served as Executive Director of Do It For The Love, a nonprofit wish-granting Foundation created by musician Michael Franti and his partner ER Nurse Sara Agah that brings people living with life-threatening illnesses, children with severe challenges, and wounded veterans to live concerts. Through the healing power of music, our goal is to inspire joy, hope, and lasting celebratory memories in the face of severe illness or trauma.
Lisa loves waking people up to following their passions, dreams and bliss to make a difference in the world, and believing that anything is possible to achieve, create, manifest and make reality!
Greg Berry is a visionary, global connector and producer of transformational experiences. For three decades, he has been a serial, positive-impact-focused entrepreneur. During the past five years, he has been active in the Impact Hub ecosystem, first founding, building and managing Impact Hub Boulder, and now taking an active role as a Board Director of the Impact Hub Association, a global network for positive impact which counts over 80 Impact Hubs and 12,000 people around the world as members. Greg is in the middle of an epochal personal and professional transformation, and what comes next is as much of a mystery to him as it is to you. Currently in his chrysalis, Greg comes to Wisdompreneurs in 2016 with a strong character, curious mind and generous soul.
Todd Jason is the Founder & CEO of The Amplifield, a revolutionary new application that aims to connect people from all over the world via the timeless practices of mindfulness, meditation and prayer.
The Amplifield’s ‘beta’ version (www.amplifield.com) launched in September, 2015 garnering over 10,000 members in 36 countries. One of the most powerful features of The Amplifield is it’s unique ability to host live, synchronized meditation events with people from across the globe. In November, 2015 The Amplifield was asked to play a role in the COP21 climate change summit in Paris by the French Secretary of Ecology & Sustainability.
This event sparked incredible, worldwide interest in The Amplifield’s because of it’s unique interactivity that fosters deep connections between members. The app is currently in rapid development to release the next iteration in April, 2016. Previously:
In 2013 Todd co-founded Sacred Media, LLC which produced a groundbreaking 10-week online course called The Superhuman Operating System based on the work of legendary philosopher Ken Wilber. Todd spent over 100 hours with Ken helping to distill his Integral Theory, often known as ‘a theory of everything’, into a practical guide to help students from all walks of life tap into and unlock their highest capacities and limitless potentials.
The Superhuman OS has garnered over 3,500 students in 81 countries. As part of the course Todd had the opportunity to interview a powerful group of thought leaders, including Tony Robbins, Seane Corne, Eben Pagan, Tami Simon, David Wolfe and many others.
From 2008 to 2013 Todd served as marketing consultant to a myriad of organizations and thought leaders including Eckhart Tolle, the THRIVE Movie, Evolving Wisdom, Integral Life, and Sounds True. During this span Todd also facilitated an online series called Worldwide Tipping Point where he spent 60 minutes asking dozens of business and spiritual leaders some of the most important questions of our time.
Worldwide Tipping Point garnered 28,000 followers in 30 days.
Other career highlights include:
Spending 4 years at DoubleClick, Inc. (1997-2001) the world’s largest digital advertising network at the time
Co-founding The Daily Flock in 2009, a ‘deal-per-day’ marketplace that landed him on several national TV shows (MSNBC and Fox News)
Co-founding InFORM (International Forum for Opioid Risk Management), attaining CME accreditation and national deployment in medical schools that drew recognition from the Attorney General of the United States.
Aaron P Kahlow
Leveraging 15 years of building community and building education-based organizations, Aaron is paving the way toward living with greater presence, purpose, and compassion (e.g. happiness) through a modern-day mindfulness practice.
As a syndicated columnist, passionate motivator and globally renowned speaker, Aaron is one of the most dynamic emerging figures in the massive shift toward Mindful Living. The combination of his Zen practice, entrepreneurial success and real world approach to mindfulness is not only inspirational, but also highly practical for all those trying to manage the chaos of living in today’s busy connected world.
Since 2001, Aaron has been dedicated to the mission of education through creating 3 successful companies that built industry first educational events; break through eLearning models and online marketplaces for those making the world a better place. During this time I was introduced to the Zen Buddhist practice that I have cultivated into more modern approach of Mindful Living.
Drawing on 15+ years of leadership and entrepreneur experience, Kahlow set out to take concept of mindfulness and turn it into a way of life in his latest venture the Mindful Order of Being. MOB is built for all those that seek purpose, meaning, clarity and greater joy in their life. Especially, those that need it most like his fellow entrepreneurs, leaders and all beings seeking more a better way to live.
Catherine Bell is the author of the revolutionary new business book The Awakened Company. Her book was a best seller one week after its release, a best seller in Canada and on Amazon, and chosen as “8 of The Best Leadership Books of 2015“.
She founded BluEra, an executive search and team transformation company that was recently on the Profit 500 list and is a best workplace. She has worked around the globe from the UK to Cuba. She has an MBA from the Smith School of Business at Queen’s University, a Sociology degree from Western University, Certified in the Enneagram, is a Yoga Instructor, and currently on the Board of the Distress Centre.
She has written for the UN, Harvard Business Review, and most recently Fortune Magazine.
Along with her husband, she created the Bell-Brown Awakened Company Scholarship at Queen’s for the Masters of Entrepreneurship & Innovation to support high-performing academic students who couldn’t otherwise afford tuition for this program.
Catherine is a mom to two rocking boys, deeply human, and makes a lot of mistakes daily. She is also quite clumsy!
Kent Brown is an entrepreneur and leader in renewable energy. He has been in the renewable power sector for over 15 years. He co-founded BluEarth Renewables Inc. in 2010 and was President & CEO until July 2015, and is currently Founder & Executive Advisor, Director.
Since inception, he led BluEarth in the acquisition, development, and construction in over $1.2 billion of long-term contracted, Canadian renewable energy assets, raised approximately $250 million in equity and $600 million of debt, and grew BluEarth to over 50 employees.
Prior to co-founding BluEarth, Kent was CEO of Canadian Hydro Developers. Kent was a key contributor in Canadian Hydro becoming Canada’s largest renewable energy company – growing from 63 megawatts (MW) and 25 staff to 694 MW and 132 staff, with a compounded return to investors of 30% per year over a nine -year period, and an enterprise value of $1.6 billion when it was taken over in late 2009.
In August 2015, he was appointed by the Government of Alberta’s Climate Change Advisory Panel to co-lead and co-facilitate Electricity Stakeholder Technical Engagement sessions, which lead to the Climate Leadership Plan, released in November 2015, Alberta’s new policy response to climate change.
Along with his wife, he co-created The Catherine Bell & Kent Brown Awakened Company Award at Queen’s for the Master of Entrepreneurship & Innovation to support high-performing academic students who couldn’t otherwise afford tuition for this program.
Kent holds a Bachelor of Arts (Hons.) from Western University and is a Chartered Professional Accountant and Chartered Accountant. Kent was named one of Canada’s Clean50 in 2012; Canadian Innovator of the Year by Clean Energy Canada in 2014; one of Canada’s Top Energy Innovators by Alberta Oil Magazine in 2015; and one of Alberta’s 50 Most Influential People by Alberta Venture Magazine in 2015.
Sasha Allenby is co-author of Matrix Reimprinting Using EFT, which was published by industry leader Hay House and released in 10 languages.
Sasha teaches worldwide through online seminars, courses and training programmes, aspiring writers to define, write and publish their books. Her specialism is books that are on the intersection of wisdom and entrepreneurism.
She is a highly sought-after ghostwriter and CEO of Wisdompreneurs Publishing.
Vicki Abadesco is the founder and executive director of Soul Shoppe, an organization that teaches social-emotional awareness, conflict resolution, bullying prevention and empathy building to elementary school communities. Every year Soul Shoppe touches the hearts and minds of close to 100,000 students and is committed to cultivating the next generation of big-hearted leaders. vicki! is an author, facilitator and award-winning creator of compelling workshops & curriculum for adults and youth. She is passionate about supporting people to feel safe and connected. Soul Shoppe recently won a prestigious award for “Building Empathy in Communities” and because of their transformative work in schools, vicki! was chosen to be a fellow for the Dalai Lama Center for Ethics and Transformative Values at MIT. Soul Shoppe