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Keynote Speakers

These six keynote speakers provided inspiration as well as information. We are very grateful for their participation. Click on the links and buttons below for more information.
 

#1 Alan Minsky

 

Alan Minsky is the Executive Director of Progressive Democrats of America (PDA).  

A lifelong activist, Alan worked as a progressive journalist for two decades before joining PDA full time in 2018. He was the Program Director at KPFK Los Angeles from 2009-2018; and the coordinator of Pacifica Radio’s national coverage of elections. Before that, Alan was one of the founders of LA Indymedia. He co-created the original podcasts for The Nation and Jacobin Magazine, as well as the Ralph Nader Radio Hour. His writing can be found at The Nation, Truthdig, Commondreams and other platforms.

Alan’s activism began in college with union solidarity work and opposition to US involvement in Central America. In the 1990s and early 2000s, Alan was active in the counter-globalization and media democracy movements. In 2011, he began organizing for Occupy Wall Street in the months leading up to the occupation of Zuccotti Park.

Alan is a committed anti-racist, feminist and LGBTQ+ rights advocate. He is also an advocate for economic policies that address social inequality, eradicate poverty, and prioritize the interests of working and middle-class households. Alan began working with PDA in 2014.
 

Alan Minsky

Contact:

Democrats of America
Email:
Alan@PDAmerica.org
Phone: 818-749-9497
PDA Website: https://pdamerica.org/

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#2 Kristin Lyerly, MD, MPH

 

The Canary in the Coal Mine: Obstetrical Care and Outcomes in Rural America

Biography:

Dr. Kristin Lyerly is an obstetrician/gynecologist with a master’s degree in public health who is a first generation college student with her roots firmly planted in Wisconsin’s farming and paper industries. She has a strong history of advocacy and leadership within the women’s health arena, happily juxtaposed with her role as the mother of four sons. She also has a special interest in mentorship, particularly the intersection of family medicine and OB/Gyn physicians as they care for women in rural and underserved regions.
 

Dr. Kristin Lyerly

Contact:

Email: kristinforwisconsin@gmail.com
Phone: 920-288-2685

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#3 Ted Auch, PhD

 

Environmental Justice Across the Rural to Urban Gradient: Data Gaps, EPA EJ Screen Hurdles, and Definitions

Ted will be outlining his work looking at Environmental Justice issues, data obstacles, the role of aerial imagery/drones in documenting impacts, and the human condition having been altered and often times dramatically so by resource extraction. He will focus on what constitutes Environmental Justice, data transparency and accessibility, and how we are living in an age where the definition of data is actually changing to include all manner of crowd sourced or citizen science led data sets even in the face of overwhelming odds and state and federal agencies that seem ill equipped or not interested in a complete accounting of the environmental, social, and health externalities created by our reliance on fossil fuels.

Biography:

Ted worked on his MS in Forest Ecology at Virginia Tech focusing on mine reclamation by way of reforestation and obstacles to success, following his time in Blacksburg he returned to Burlington, Vermont to pursue a PhD in Biogeochemistry at the University of Vermont, where he also received his BS. His dissertation focused on modeling above and below ground pattern and process as a function of several climate change scenarios.

He pursued two postdocs at Green Mountain College looking at High Vs Low Input agriculture and then moved to Cleveland, Ohio to pursue his second postdoc at the Cleveland Botanical Garden looking at Vacant Lot Repurposing for ecosystem services and stormwater management.

Since 2012, Ted has been at the FracTracker Alliance as their Midwest Program Director looking at the water, waste, and landscape impacts of petrochemical/fracking impacts broadly defined. He is also a member of the John Carroll University Biology Faculty teaching courses in Plant Ecology and Climate Change.

He serves on several EPA Science Advisory Boards (SABs) advising the EPA on their EJScreen Tool and the Environmental Justice Science and Analysis Review Panel (EJSARP).
Ted Auch

Contact:

FracTracker Alliance
Phone:
802-343-6771
Email: auch@fractracker.org
Website: www.fractracker.org

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#4 Michael Crute

 

Mike grew up in Madison, WI, the son of a dynamic, liberal mother who acted as an unpaid lobbyist for the State of Wisconsin foster parent association. Mike created a live call-in show for cable, worked for ABC-WXOW during and after graduating from UW-Lacrosse. Mike found his progressive voice and reactivated his passion for broadcasting by co-founding “The Devil’s Advocates Radio Show” in 2012. In 2017, Mike added station ownership to his resume of boosting progressive talk on Wisconsin’s airwaves with the AM and FM signal patterns in Madison, WI.
 

Program:

Devil’s Advocates Radio Show
Weekdays 4-6 pm CT
Stream and Podcasts:
www.DARNWI.com

Mike Crute

Contact:

Mike Crute 
Co-host 
Devil’s Advocates Radio Show
CEO-Devil Radio
Phone:
608-225-4640
Email: crute@darnwi.com
Website: https://darnwi.com/
Handle: @devilradio

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#5 Beverly D. Hamilton-Williams

 

Biography:

Beverly D. Hamilton-Williams is a graduate of Texas Southern University with a B.S. Degree in Speech Pathology.  She completed her Master's of Education and Post Graduate Certifications in Regular and Special Education at Cardinal Stritch University.  Ms. Hamilton-Williams is a wife, mother of two sets of twins, and a grandmother of three.  Her professional career included working as a Speech Therapist in schools and rehabilitation settings and as a Special Education teacher in public schools.  She has worked as a civil rights advocate and NAACP Youth Council advisor for several years, and is currently a community advocate and director of the nonprofit, Community Together Voices of MiIwaukee's Children with a  focus on improving the educational and social outcomes for children locally and statewide in Wisconsin.  She was raised in a civil rights family and believes that those who can should always help those who can't, as stated by historic civil rights leader, W.E.B. Dubois. She has dedicated her life and time to helping those who need assistance in the areas of education and civil rights issues.

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Beverly D. Hamilton-Williams

#6 John Nichols

 
John shares his perspective on the Wisconsin political condition. He also will review the threats posed to our democratic institutions.

Biography:

John Nichols is the author or co-author of more than a dozen books on media and politics. He is the national affairs correspondent for The Nation and associate editor of The Capital Times.

John Nichols