(in order of appearance)
Sheldon Solomon, Ph.D.
(Head Scholar; Lead Scholar, Psychology)
Sheldon Solomon, Professor of Psychology, Skidmore College, experimentalist and co-creator of Terror Management Theory, inspired by the work of Ernest Becker (The Denial of Death, Pulitzer Prize, 1974). His studies of the effects of the uniquely human awareness of death on behavior have been supported by the National Science Foundation and Ernest Becker Foundation, and were featured in the award winning documentary film Flight from Death: The Quest for Immortality. He is co-author of In the Wake of 9/11: The Psychology of Terror and The Worm at the Core: On the Role of Death in Life. Sheldon is an American Psychological Society Fellow, and a recipient of an American Psychological Association Presidential Citation (2007), a Lifetime Career Award by the International Society for Self and Identity (2009), and the Association of Graduate Liberal Studies Programs Annual Faculty Award (2011).
Chris DiBona, Ph.D.
(Lead Scholar, Philosophy)
Chris DiBona, Visiting Assistant Professor of Religion, Brown University (Fall, 2021), focuses on the philosophical notion of alterity and its complex deployment in ethical, religious, and environmental thought in the modern West. Author of “Religion and Reconnecting with Nature: A Deweyian Reading of Leslie Marmon Silko’s Ceremony, and Vice-Versa” in Worldviews: Global Religions, Culture, and Ecology.
Dianne Dillon-Ridgley, Ph.D.
(hon.) (Lead Scholar, Environmental Ethics)
Dianne Dillon-Ridgley, environmentalist and Human Rights Activist has for thirty years worked on issues of the environment and sustainability, gender and corporate social responsibility (CSR), both domestically and internationally. Since 1997 she has been a director at Interface, Inc., global manufacturer of modular carpet and a leader in sustainable design. She was a director at Green Mountain Energy for the first six years and still chairs the Environmental Integrity Committee for the company. She was appointed by the White House to the US delegation for the Earth Summit in Rio, UNGASS-’97 & WSSD in South Africa, making her the only person to serve on all three US delegations. She is founding chair — emeritus of Plains Justice, an environmental law center for the Great Plains states in the US and is a trustee for CIEL, (the Center for International Environmental Law) Population Connection (National Chair), WNSF (the Women’s Network for a Sustainable Future) the former national chair of River Network and president of ZPG. She was also CEO of WEDO and head of the Iowa Association of Human Rights Agencies, among others.
(Co-Lead Scholar, Environmental Ethics)
Kathy Robb is the CEO of Blue Access LLC, a company addressing water quality and security needs through diverse water-related investments. Previously Kathy was a partner at Sive, Paget & Riesel P.C, the nation’s first environmental law firm, where her practice focused on litigation in federal courts, and a partner at Hunton & Williams where she focused on energy and environmental litigation, regulation, and counseling before federal, state, and administrative courts. She is founder and director of the Water Policy Institute, which seeks innovative solutions to water supply and quality issues. Kathy serves on the boards of the Environmental Law Institute, the advisory board of Bloomberg BNA’s Environmental Due Diligence Guide, and the Women’s Network for a Sustainable Future, which she cofounded and chairs.
(Co-Lead Scholar, AI Ethics)
Wendell Wallach is an internationally recognized expert on the ethical and governance concerns posed by emerging technologies, particularly artificial intelligence and neuroscience. He is a consultant, an ethicist, and a scholar at Yale University’s Interdisciplinary Center for Bioethics, where he chairs the working research group on technology and ethics. He is a Hastings Center senior advisor. He is co-author (with Colin Allen) of Moral Machines: Teaching Robots Right from Wrong, which maps the new field variously called machine ethics, machine morality, computational morality, and friendly AI. His latest book is A Dangerous Master: How to Keep Technology from Slipping Beyond Our Control. Wallach is also the principal investigator of a Hastings Center project on the control and responsible innovation in the development of autonomous machines.
Shannon Vallor, Ph.D.
(Co-Lead Scholar, AI Ethics)
Shannon Vallor, Professor in Philosophy and Baillie Gifford Chair in the Ethics of Data and Artificial Intelligence at the University of Edinburgh’s Edinburgh Futures Institute. Author of Technology and the Virtues: A Philosophical Guide to a Future Worth Wanting (Oxford University Press, 2016). Editor of the forthcoming Oxford Handbook of Philosophy of Technology and currently working on a new book on the subject of artificial intelligence and ethics: The AI Mirror: Rebuilding Humanity in an Age of Machine Thinking.
Kristina Maldonado Bad Hand
Kristina Maldonado Bad Hand is a Sicangu Lakota and Cherokee artist that hails from Taos, New Mexico. Her passion for community and social justice has led her to speak on matters of equality and cultural representation in pop culture. She is a graphic designer, illustrator, comic creator, and former co-chair of the Denver American Indian Commission. She has 10 years of experience in after-school and summer programs, most notably for her work with Pop Culture Classroom in their comic-based literacy curriculum; as a community and OBH liaison with the Jeffco Indian Education Program; and as a Think 360 Artist for her SEL lessons through design and pop culture. Recently she has transitioned into working with the Denver Art Museum as the Creative and Public Engagement Fellow, working with the Creative in Residence and the Native Artists in Residence programs
A citizen of the Nulhegan Abenaki Nation, Joseph Bruchac’s poems, fiction, and essays have been widely published. Author of over 170 books, his novel Code Talker was listed by Time as one of the 100 best YA books of all time. A traditional musician and storyteller, he’s performed throughout the United States and abroad, a featured teller at such events as the National Storytelling Festival, the Sierra Storytelling Festival, and the British Storytelling Festival.
Emalani Case, Ph.D.
Emalani Case is a Kanaka Maoli writer, teacher, and aloha ʻāina. She is deeply engaged in issues of Indigenous rights, colonialism, decolonization, and environmental and social justice. She is the author of Everything Ancient Was Once New: Indigenous Persistence from Hawaiʻi to Kahiki. She is from Waimea, Hawaiʻi.
Sakinah Hofler is a fiction writer, poet, and playwright. She has won the Manchester Fiction Prize, the Hurston/Wright Award for College Writers, and the Sherwood Anderson Fiction Award. Her work has received support from the Albert C. Yates Foundation, the Kingsbury Foundation, the Taft Research Center, and the P.E.O. Scholar Award. A former chemical engineer for the United States Department of Defense, she’s currently a lecturer in Princeton’s Writing Program. She lives in Newark, NJ.
Ephraim Isaac, Ph.D.
Ephraim Isaac, BA; BD; Ph.D.; D.H.L. (hon.); Litt. D (hon.). Director, Institute of Semitic Studies, Princeton, NJ; Fellow, The Dead Sea Scrolls Foundation (1998 -); founder and international Chairman of the Board of Peace & Development Center, promoting traditional eldership and peace in the Horn of Africa; decorated/knighted by His Majesty the King of Sweden (2013) as Order of the Polar Star, First Class for Lifetime service to Peace and Justice; first recipient of the Morton Deutsch Conflict Resolution Award of the American Psychological Association; chosen by the Harvard Divinity School as a Father of Peace “2020 Peter J. Gomes Distinguished Alumni Honor” award recipient. The first Professor hired in and one of the founders of Harvard’s Afro-American Studies Department (1968-77). Dr. Isaac is author of numerous articles and books. He knows seventeen languages. He is the first translator of Handel’s Messiah into Amharic. He is widely known in Ethiopia as founder and Director of the National Literacy Campaign Organization that made millions literate in the late sixties. In 2022 Harvard University Graduate School of Arts and Sciences selected Dr. Isaac as for “Alumni Who Made a Difference…whose work has had an outstanding influence on the world…”
Venerable Dr Juewei, Ph.D.
Venerable Dr Juewei holds a Ph.D. in Religious Studies, a Master of Arts in Buddhist Studies, a Master of Business Administration, and a Master of Science in Computer Science and Engineering. Juewei began her career as an applied R&D engineer in Artificial Intelligence systems in the 1980s, however made her decision to join the Fo Guang Shan order when she realized that she could be of the best service to humanity through promoting humanistic values in an increasingly divided world. Juewei is now Head of Program for Applied Buddhist Studies and Humanistic Buddhism, Director of the Humanistic Buddhism Centre, and Senior Lecturer at Nan Tien Institute in Australia, where she teaches subjects supported by her research.
Daniel Kelly – Composer & Pianist. An artist who has been called “stunningly original” with “a visionary imagination,” composer and pianist Daniel Kelly explores the meeting place of music with literature, visual art and journalism. Rakonto, Kelly’s series of interview-based concerts, have been commissioned by theaters across the US. Each of these concert-length works have transformed stories of everyday people – farmers, teachers, students, seniors, immigrants and hurricane survivors – into dramatic and compelling music that celebrates our shared human experience.