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Complete 2023 International Peace Conference May 5-6 Schedule  

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Various sessions and keynote addresses that focus on the peace conference pillars: #1 Individual Peace, #2 Peace at Homes and in Families, #3 Peace Education in School, #4 Promoting Peaceful Communities and Reducing Violence, #5 Addressing and Preventing Human Trafficking, #6 The Quest for Racial Equity & Justice, #7 Empowerment of Women and Girls and #8 International Peace. 

Conference Day 1

FRIDAY, MAY 5

9 a.m. – 10:30 a.m. Opening Session

North Exhibition Hall 2

Welcome – Will Ratliff, Chairperson, 2023 International Peace Conference

Topic: The Civil Rights Movement in Birmingham featuring Odessa Woolfolk, Founding President and Chair Emerita of the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute

Topic: Building Peace in Birmingham featuring Mayor Randall L. Woodfin, City of Birmingham, AL

Topic: Rotary & Peace featuring Jennifer Jones, President, Rotary International

Topic: UAB’s Contribution to Peace in Birmingham featuring Dr. Ray Watts, President, University of Alabama at Birmingham

10:30 a.m. – 10:45 a.m. Coffee Break

10:45 a.m. – 11:35 a.m.

Breakout Session 1

Pillar #1 Topic: Meditation for Peace & Health – featuring Dr. Yolanda Lewis-Ragland, Director of Community Impact and Health Equity, National Collaborative for Health Equity

Location: Forum Meeting Room A

Pillar #2 Topic: Prevention and Treatment – Domestic Violence featuring Susann-Montgomery Clark, Founder, Megan’s Fund; Allison Dearing, Executive Director, One Place Metro Alabama Family Justice Center; and Dr. LaRhonda Magras, CEO, YWCA Central Alabama

Location: Forum Meeting Room B

Pillar #3 Topic: Innovative Early Learning featuring Dr. Tommie Bice, Board Chair, i3 Academy; and Lella Carl Hamiter, Executive Director, Preschool Partners

Location: North Meeting Room B

Pillar #3 Topic: New Gen Peacebuilders featuring Patricia Shafer, Founder and Executive Director,

NewGen Peacebuilders

Location: North Meeting Room DC

Pillar #4 Topic: Community-Based Health Care and Peace featuring Dr. Meghan Bonds, Medical Director, Hale County (AL) Hospital; Dr. Robert Record, Founder and CEO, Family Medicine Residency Faculty for Christ Health Center; Dr. Mona Fouad, Professor/Senior Associate Dean at UAB, Live HealthSmart Alabama; and Teresa Shufflebarger, Chief Administration Officer, Live HealthSmart Alabama

Location: North Meeting Room E

Pillar #4 Topic: Creation of Peace Environments – Red Trail System and Cool Green Trees featuring Rusha Smith, Executive Director, Freshwater Land Trust; Francesca Gross, Executive Director, Cool Green Trees; and Amanda Storey, Executive Director, Jones Valley Teaching Farm

Location: North Meeting Room F

Pillar #4 Topic: New Birmingham Violence Intervention featuring Sherah Liverpool, Associate Director, Health Alliance for Violence Intervention and Deborah Daniels, Co-Founder, Offender Alumni Association

Location: North Meeting Room G

Pillar #5 Topic: Law Enforcement and Legislation Combatting Human Trafficking featuring Ambassador John Richmond, State Department TIP Office; Doug Gilmer, Department of Human Services of Alabama; Chris Lim, Coordinator, Alabama Anti-Human Trafficking Alliance

Location: Forum Meeting Room C

Pillar #6 Topic: Non-violent Movement for Peace & Reconciliation featuring Carolyn McKinstry, Author & Civil Rights Foot Soldier; Janice Kelsey, Educator & Civil Rights Foot Soldier; James Stewart, Activist & Civil Rights Foot Soldier

Location: North Meeting Room I

Pillar #7 Topic: Starting Anew featuring Melinda McGahee, Executive Director of Lovelady Center

Location: Forum Meeting Room G

Pillar #8 Topic: Rotary International and the United Nations featuring Mark Maloney, Past President,

Rotary International

Location: Forum Meeting Room H

Pillar #8 Topic: Northern Ireland: Is it a Model or Are There Other Models featuring Byron Bland, Associate Director, Stanford Center on International Conflict and Negotiation

Location: Forum Meeting Room I

​11:35 a.m. – 11:45 a.m. Coffee Break

​11:45 a.m. – 12:35 p.m. Breakout Session 2

Pillar #1 Topic: Unconscious Bias featuring Joel Lesko, President of SunShine Learning;

Location: Forum Meeting Room A

Pillar #2 Topic: Saving Families, Together or Apart featuring Rebecca Morris, Sr. VP External Affairs, Embrace Alabama Kids; and Frances Ross Nolan, Attorney, Collaborative Divorce Practitioner, Nolan Pyers PC

Location: Forum Meeting Room B

Pillar #3 Topic: Teaching Hard History featuring Bishop Van Moody, Founding Pastor, Freedom Schools; Zoe Weil, Director of Education Engagement, Alabama Holocaust Education Center

Location: North Meeting Room B

Pillar #3 Topic: Unique Charter Schools in the Magic City featuring Dr. Patton Furman, Principal, Magic City Acceptance Academy; Ruben Morris, Founder & CEO, Alabama Aerospace & Aviation High School

Location: North Meeting Room DC

Pillar #4 Topic: Mobile Health Clinic and Housing featuring Gloria Howard, Chief Operating Officer for Alethia House; Dr. Mona Fouad, Professor/Senior Associate Dean at UAB, Live HealthSmart Alabama; and Teresa Shufflebarger, Chief Administration Officer, Live HealthSmart Alabama

Location: North Meeting Room E

Pillar #4 Topic: Importance of Leadership featuring Rev. Denny Blake, Senior Pastor, Disciples of Jesus Ministries and Gay Malony, Past President, Decatur Daybreak Rotary Club

Location: North Meeting Room F

Pillar #5 Topic: Healthcare and Human Trafficking featuring Dr. Hanni Stoklosa, Founder, Heal Trafficking;  Rachel Fischer, Survivor & Activist; and Laura Castellanos, Hospitals Against Violence, AHA

Location: North Meeting Room G

Pillar #6 Topic: Promoting Successful Black Businesses featuring Felicia Beard, Senior Director, Racial Equity Initiatives, Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo; and Dr. Tim Lampkin, Founder and CEO, Higher Purpose Co.; Damian Carson, Assistant Vice President, Operation HOPE’s One Million Black
Business Initiative (1MBB)

Location: Forum Meeting Room C

Pillar #6 Topic: Racial Healing featuring Lucy Wairimu Mukuria, Kenyan Psychologist and Radio Personality, Founder of True North Society; and Salaam Greene

Location: North Meeting Room I

Pillar #7 Topic: How Rotary Empowers Women & Girls featuring Elizabeth Usovicz, Director of Rotary International; and Jennifer Jones, President, Rotary International

Location: Forum Meeting Room G

Pillar #8 Topic: Peace in Space featuring Rajiv Doreswamy, Manager, Exploration Transportation and Development Office, NASA

Location: Forum Meeting Room I

Pillar #8 Topic: Protection of Civilians featuring Urs Broennimann, Consul General, Swiss Consulate

Location: Forum Meeting Room H

​12:35 p.m. – 1:45 p.m. Lunch & General Session 2

North Exhibition Hall 2

Featuring Stephanie Sinclair, Photojournalist and Founder, Too Young To Wed; Grace Ndanu, Graduate of Egerton University in Kenya in Gender, Women’s’ and Development Studies;

​1:45 p.m. – 2:00 p.m. Coffee Break

​2:00 p.m. – 2:50 p.m. Breakout Session 3

Pillar #2 Topic: Meditation for Family Peace & Health – featuring Dr. Yolanda Lewis-Ragland, Director of Community Impact and Health Equity, National Collaborative for Health Equity

Location: Forum Meeting Room A

Pillar #3 Topic: Quality Education for Every Student featuring Mark Dixon, President, A+ Education Partnership; and Dr. Tommie Bice, Board Chair, i3 Academy;

Location: Forum Meeting Room B

Pillar #3 Topic: Unique Charter Schools in the Magic City featuring Dr. Patton Furman, Principal, Magic City Acceptance Academy; and Reuben Morris, Executive Director, Alabama Aerospace and Aviation Schools, Inc.

Pillar #4 Topic: Intentional Communities featuring Marcus Briggs-Cloud, Co-Director, Ekvnv Yefolecvlke; Elizabeth Dede, Koinonia Farms

Location: North Meeting Room B

Pillar #4 Topic: Accessible Healthcare featuring Dr. Eva Czermak, Physician and Rotary Peace Fellow; and Dr. Meghan Bonds, Medical Director, Hale County (AL) Hospital

Location: North Meeting Room DC

Pillar #4 Topic: Birmingham: Leading the Way in LGBTQ+ Equality featuring Carmarion Anderson, Alabama State Director Human Rights Campaign and Executive Director of Black Transwomen, Inc.; Alexander Bautisa, LGBTQ+ Latinx Director, AIDS Alabama; Michael Fordham, Program Director, 1917 Clinic; and Gina Mallisham, Executive Director, Jefferson County Memorial Project

Location: North Meeting Room E

Pillar #5 Topic: Fighting Human Trafficking Business: Hospitality, Transportation and Commerce featuring Mark VanBeest, VP External Affairs, Motel 6; Penny Davidson, Amazon; Erica Sarkissian, Delta Airlines; Nikki Clifton, Director, UPS Foundation

Location: North Meeting Room F

Pillar #6 Topic: Educating for Racial Progress featuring Andrea Miller, Executive Director of AlaQuest Collaborative for Education; and Bishop Van Moody, Founding Pastor, Freedom Schools

Location: North Meeting Room G

Pillar #6 Topic: Recovering from Community Trauma featuring Felicia Beard, Senior Director, Racial Equity Initiatives, Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo

Location: Forum Meeting Room C

Pillar #7 Topic: Programs for Stronger Girls featuring Kristen Greenwood, Executive Director, GirlSpring; and Jessica Rodgers, Director of Program Operations, Girls Inc. of Central Alabama

Location: North Meeting Room I

Pillar #8 Topic: Refugees and Immigrants featuring Luma Mufleh, Founder, Fugees Family; and Dr. Carlos Enrique Alemán, Chief Executive Officer, ¡HICA!

Location: Forum Meeting Room G

Pillar #8 Topic: Institute for Human Rights at the University of Alabama at Birmingham featuring Dr. Tina Kempin-Reuter, Director, Institute for Human Rights at the University of Alabama at Birmingham

Location: Forum Meeting Room H

​2:50 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. Coffee Break

​3:00 p.m. – 3:50 p.m. Breakout Session 4

Pillar #1 Topic: Peace, Mental Health Through Art featuring Dori DeCamillis, Owner, Red Dot Gallery; Kimberly Kirklin, Director, UAB Arts in Medicine

Location: Forum Meeting Room A

Pillar #2 Topic: Supporting New Families featuring Brandi Moore, Nurse Home Visitor, Office of Clinical and Global Partnerships at UAB; Grace Ndanu, Graduate of Egerton University in Kenya in Gender,

Women’s and Development Studies

Location: Forum Meeting Room B

Pillar #3 Topic: Education for At-Risk Students featuring Dr. Jeremiah Newell, Superintendent, ACCEL Academy; and Donna Dukes, Founder and Executive Director, Maranathan Academy

Location: North Meeting Room B

Pillar #3 Topic: Teaching Youth to Make a Difference featuring Jennifer Hatchett, Executive Director, YouthServe, Inc.; and Andrea Miller, Executive Director of AlaQuest Collaborative for Education

Location: North Meeting Room DC

Pillar #4 Topic: Homeboy Industries as a Model featuring Fabian Debora, Executive Director, Homeboy Industries

Location: North Meeting Room E

Pillar #4 Topic: Jefferson County Department of Health Programs Promoting Peace featuring Dr. Mark Wilson, Health Officer, Jefferson County Department of Health

Location: North Meeting Room F

Pillar #4 Topic: Peace Through Sports featuring Shan Foster, CEO, Fostering Healthy Solutions and Retired NBA Player; Luma Mufleh, Founder, Fugees Family; and Ron Froehlich

Location: North Meeting Room G

Pillar #5 Topic: Rotary’s Work on Human Trafficking featuring Dave McCleary, President, End Human Trafficking Now – Rotary Action Group Against Slavery; Jeremy Hurst, Zone 33-34 Director; and Bob Deering, DGN

Location: Forum Meeting Room C

Pillar #6 Topic: Birmingham Civil Rights Institute Today featuring DeJuana Thompson, President of the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute

Location: North Meeting Room I

Pillar #7 Topic: Supporting Women Recovering from Trauma featuring Melinda McGahee, Executive Director, Lovelady Center; Carolyn Potter, CEO, WellHouse; and Rev. Becca Stevens, Founder and CEO, Thistle Farm

Location: Forum Meeting Room G

Pillar #8 Topic: International Programs for Cities of Peace featuring Rudy Westervelt, Past Governor,

Rotary District 5330

Location: Forum Meeting Room H

​3:50 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. Coffee Break

​4:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m. General Session 3

North Exhibition Hall 2

Topic: The Physiological Benefits of Mediation featuring Bob Roth, Chief Executive Officer, Spokesperson for Transcendental Meditation and the David Lynch Foundation

Topic: Women Empowerment featuring Liz Huntley, Author, Attorney and Co-Founder of The Hope Institute

Topic: The Institute for Economics and Peace: Theory and Practice featuring Steve Killelea, Founder and CEO, Institute for Economics and Peace

​5:30 p.m. – 7 p.m. Cocktail Hour in Friendship Hall

​7 p.m. – Dinner with Archbishop Laurent Mbanda of Rwanda (Click here to purchase tickets)

Conference Day 2

Saturday, May 6
8:30 a.m. – 10 a.m. General Session 4

North Exhibition Hall 2

Topic: Peace in Sri Lanka featuring Ravi Ravindran, Past President, Rotary International

Topic: Empowerment of Women featuring Rev. Becca Stevens, Founder & CEO, Thistle Farm

Topic: The Horseshoe Project featuring John Dorsey, Founder and CEO, Project Horeshoe Farm

10 a.m. – 10:15 a.m. Coffee Break

10:15 a.m. – 11:05 a.m. Breakout Session 5

Pillar #1 Topic: Peace Through Art featuring Fabian Debora, Executive Director, Homeboy Art Academy

Location: Forum Meeting Room A

Pillar #2 Topic: Support for At-Risk Families featuring Joan Witherspoon-Norris, Executive Director, Alabama Network of Family Resource Centers; Lori Foreman, Director of Programs, Embrace Alabama Kids; Danny Carr, District Attorney, Jefferson County, AL

Location: Forum Meeting Room B

Pillar #3 Topic: Building a Culture of Peace in Schools featuring Dr. Patricia Simpson, Executive Director, The Hope Institute; and Andrea Miller, Executive Director of AlaQuest Collaborative for Education

Location: North Meeting Room B

Pillar #3 Topic: Peace Using the Arts featuring Allie Gorrie, Red Mountain Theatre; Fabian Debora, Executive Director, Homeboy Industries; and Julie Danley, UAB ArtPlay

Location: North Meeting Room DC

Pillar #4 Topic: Training Tomorrow’s Servant Leaders featuring Caroline Janeway, Alabama State Director, Impact America – Alabama; and John Dorsey, Founder and CEO, Project Horseshoe Farm

Location: North Meeting Room E

Pillar #4 Topic: Purpose Built Communities featuring Carol Naughton, CEO, Purpose Built Communities; and Mashonda Taylor, Executive Director, Woodlawn United

Location: North Meeting Room F

Pillar #5 Topic: Educating to Prevent Human Trafficking featuring Ashlie Bryant, Founder and CEO, 3 Strands Global Foundation; Valerie Ellery, Educator & Best Selling Author; Veronica McDaniel, Teacher, Atlanta International School

Location: North Meeting Room G

Pillar #6 Topic: Relearning History featuring Carey Fountain, Black Cherry Tree Project; and Gina Mallisham, Executive Director, Jefferson County Memorial Project

Location: Forum Meeting Room C

Pillar #6 Topic: Freedom Riders Training Institute featuring Charles Person, Civil Rights Activist; and Pete Conroy, Director, Environmental Policy and Information Center (EPIC), Jacksonville State University

Location: North Meeting Room I

Pillar #7 Topic: Lifting Up Women in Africa featuring Stephanie Sinclaire, Photojournalist and Founder, Too Young To Wed; Grace Ndanu, Graduate of Egerton University in Kenya in Gender, Women’s’ and Development Studies; and Lucy Wairimu Mukuria, Kenyan Psychologist and Radio Personality, Founder of True North Society

Location: Forum Meeting Room G

Pillar #8 Topic: Institute for Economics & Peace Q&A featuring Steve Killelea, Founder and CEO

Location: Forum Meeting Room H

​11:05 a.m. – 11:15 a.m. Coffee Break

​11:15 a.m. – 12:05 p.m. Breakout Session 6

Pillar #1 Topic: Be Kind, Be Peaceful featuring Ashish Kulshrestha, Director, Kp.m.G’s Deal Advisory Strategy

Location: Forum Meeting Room A

Pillar #2 Topic: Caring for Our Elderly featuring Robyn James, Director, Elder Justice Center of Alabama; and John Dorsey, Founder and CEO, Project Horseshoe Farm

Location: Forum Meeting Room B

Pillar #3 Topic: Peace on College Campuses – Combatting Addiction and Dating Violence featuring Kristina Canfield, Executive Director, Association of Recovery in Higher Education; Susann-Montgomery Clark, Founder, Megan’s Fund

Location: North Meeting Room B

Pillar #3 Topic: Freedom Schools: Combatting Education Deficits featuring Bishop Van Moody, Founding Pastor, Freedom Schools

Location: North Meeting Room DC

Pillar #4 Topic: Violence Intervention/Prevention featuring Rasheedat Fetuga, Founder & CEO, Gideon’s Army; Deborah Daniels, Founder, Offender Alumni Association

Location: North Meeting Room E

Pillar #5 Topic: Mobilizing Against Human Trafficking featuring Renata Parras, Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) Counsel, Paul Hastings; Heather Fischer, Senior Advisor for Human Rights Crimes,

Thomson Reuters Special Services

Location: North Meeting Room F

Pillar #6 Topic: Educating for Black Financial Success featuring James Sutton, Executive Director, BuildUp Ensley; Dr. Tim Lampkin, Founder and CEO, Higher Purpose Co.;  Cleo Washington, Director, Legislative Affairs, AT&T

Location: North Meeting Room G

Pillar #7 Topic: Overcoming Challenges featuring Dr. LaRhonda Magras, CEO, YWCA of Central Alabama; and Melinda McGahee, Executive Director of Lovelady Center

Location: Forum Meeting Room C

Pillar #8 Topic: Anthropology at UAB featuring Dr. Peter Verbeek, Ph.D., Associate Professor/Program Director, Department of Anthropology at the University of Alabama at Birmingham

Location: Forum Meeting Room G

​Pillar #8 Topic: International Programs for Cities and Peace featuring Rudy Westervelt, Past Governor,

Rotary District 5330

Location: North Meeting Room I

​12:05 p.m. – 1:30 p.m. Lunch & General Session 5

​Topic: Carrying The Work Forward featuring Rev. Dr. Bernice A. King

CEO, The King Center

North Exhibition Hall

​1:30 p.m. – 1:45 p.m. Coffee Break

​1:45 p.m. – 2:35 p.m. Breakout Session 7

Pillar #1 Topic: Transforming Ourself Through 12 Step Programs featuring Kristina Canfield, Executive Director, Association of Recovery in Higher Education

Location: Forum Meeting Room A

Pillar #2 Topic: Supporting Families of the Disabled featuring John Kemp, Lakeshore Foundation; and Joan Witherspoon-Norris, Executive Director, Alabama Network of Family Resource Centers

Location: Forum Meeting Room B

Pillar #3 Topic: Nature for Student Peace featuring LaTanya Scott, Education Director, Cahaba River Society; and Verna Gates, Founder and Executive Director, Fresh Air Family

Location: North Meeting Room B

Pillar #4 Topic: Teaching and Training Men about Domestic Violence Prevention featuring Gail Fowler, Violence Intervention Program Manager, Safeplace; Shan Foster, CEO, Fostering Healthy Solutions and Retired NBA Player

Location: North Meeting Room DC

Pillar #4 Topic: The Dannon Project featuring Kerri Pruitt, Founder, The Dannon Project; Moderated by Jeh Jeh Pruitt, Anchor, Good Day Alabama & Co-Founder, The Dannon Project

Location: North Meeting Room E

Pillar #5 Topic: Survivor Services featuring Jessica Munoz, Founder & CEO, Hoʻōla Nā Pua Pua (HNP); Carolyn Potter, CEO, WellHouse; and Rachel Fischer, Survivor & Activist

Location: North Meeting Room F

Pillar #6 Topic: Unconscious Bias featuring T. Marie King, Film Maker and Anti-Racism Training Facilitator; Joel Lesko, President, SunShower Learning; and Debra Nelson, President, Elevate Communications, Inc.

Location: North Meeting Room G

Pillar #6 Topic: Combatting Community Violence featuring Rasheedat Fetuga, Founder & CEO, Gideon’s Army; and Onoyemi Williams, Deputy Director and Community Violence Interruption Organizer/Strategist; Moderated by Dr. Mark Wilson, Health Officer, Jefferson County Department of Health

Location: Forum Meeting Room C

Pillar #7 Topic: FGM Education and Prevention featuring Stephanie Sinclaire, Photojournalist and Founder, Too Young To Wed; Grace Ndanu, Graduate of Egerton University in Kenya in Gender, Women’s’ and Development Studies; and Lucy Wairimu Mukuria, Kenyan Psychologist and Radio Personality,

Founder of True North Society

Location: North Meeting Room I

Pillar #8 Topic: Mediators Beyond Borders featuring Martin Martin, Global Partnership Manager for Mediators Beyond Borders

Location: Forum Meeting Room G

Pillar #8 Topic: US Human Rights Cities Alliance featuring Jackie Smith, Founder of US Human Rights Cities Alliance; Molefi Askari, Co-Chair, The Ubuntu Institute for Community Development

Location: Forum Meeting Room H

​2:35 p.m. – 2:45 p.m. Coffee Break

​2:45 p.m. – 4 p.m. Closing General Session

​Featuring Will Ratliff, Chairperson

2023 International Peace Conference

North Exhibition Hall

7 p.m. – Peace Concert Benefitting Ukrainian Refugees 

Alys Robinson Stephens Performing Arts Center

University of Alabama at Birmingham

1200 10th Ave S, Birmingham, AL 35294

​Click here to purchase tickets or call the Alys Stephens Center Box Office at 205-975-2787