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How Entrepreneurship Can Change the World

November 17, 2014 @ 7:30 pm

Keynote Speaker Ken Banks in the technology sector will be joined by other renowned innovators in various fields in a panel discussion and Q&A session

Ken Banks, Founder of and FrontlineSMS, has devoted himself to the application of mobile technology for positive social and environmental change in the developing world. He has worked at the intersection of technology, anthropology, conservation and development for the past 20 years, working throughout Africa. He is a Pop!Tech Fellow, a Tech Awards Laureate, an Ashoka Fellow, and a National Geographic Emerging Explorer, received the Pizzigati Prize for Software in the Public Interest, and has been internationally recognized for his technology-based work. Last year, he was nominated for the TED Prize. Banks is a recognized thought-leader in his field and is the author of “The Rise of the Reluctant Innovator.” His latest project,Means of Exchange, looks at how everyday technologies can be used to democratise opportunities for economic self-sufficiency, rebuild local community, and promote a return to local resource use. Frontline SMS, which he founded is an award-winning text message communication system powering thousands of grassroots social projects in over 150 countries around the world. He was invited as the opening keynote speaker at the Humanitarian Technology Challenge and is described as “probably the world’s leading voice in promoting mobile phones as an appropriate technology” by World Watch. He has been featured in The Economist, the BBC, the New York Times, Times Magazine, National Geographic, and a UN publication focusing on advances in mobile health.

Earl Martin Phalen is one of the nation’s leading social entrepreneurs and education reformers. Phalen is no stranger to the urge to want to found a social venture and make an impact in the world, while still attending classes in college. As a law school student, he founded Building Educated Leaders for Life (BELL), which started out as an organization that served 20 scholars with an operating budget of $12,000 to a nationwide nonprofit organization with a budget of $27 million serving 15,000 scholars. In recognition of its innovative, entrepreneurial approach to creating sustainable solutions to one of our nation’s greatest challenges, BELL was named one of the “top 25 organizations changing the world” by Fast Company and the Monitor Group. He has dedicated the past 20 years of his life to expanding the life opportunities of children through learning and academic engagement. His organizations have made such significant transformative changes to educate children and youth across the country that President Obama has modeled federal legislation after his summer learning program. He is a three-time recipient of Fast Company’s Social Capitalist Award and has been awarded the President’s Service Award by President Clinton. Recognized for his exceptional contributions in the education sector, he has been selected as a fellow at AshokaEchoing Green, and Mind Trust and was featured in MSNBC, NBC Nightly News, Huffington Post, ABC News, the story cover of Time Magazine, BET, and TEDx.

Working as a juvenile corrections officer, Teresa Goines felt that sending these young men and women home without enough support to keep them on the right track, the system was essentially setting them up to fail. Finding a well-paying job can be a tough proposition when you have a criminal record. Motivated by her belief that the choices people make in their youth to not define them, she wanted to provide an alternative to gangs, knowing that such groups often give troubled youth a way to make money while providing a sense of family and social support. That’s why she founded Old Skool Cafe, a 1940s style restaurant entirely run by young people from difficult circumstances, most of them previously incarcerated. The whole structure of the organization is meant for youth to keep rising up in leadership and management – providing jobs, career training, life coching, and a built-in referral support system to help youth turn their lives around, prevent violence, and curing the broken cycle of mass incarceration of youth. Teresa was named a CNN Hero last year, was ranked among the top 10 favorite social enterprises of, and received the San Francisco Community Leadership Award from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).

Leah Brown is the owner and President of A10 Clinical Solutions and is unwavering in her vision to provide exceptional, compassionate, highly talented clinical-research and clinical-care professionals to areas that traditionally experience healthcare disparities. With over 20 years in the healthcare/regulatory compliance consulting space, she founded A10 years following the loss of her dear uncle to HIV/AIDS and knowing she had to do something critical and innovative to help heal the world. Fortune Magazine named Brown among the Top 10 Most Powerful Women Entrepreneurs of 2010 and Inc. Magazine ranked her among the top 10 Women Entrepreneurs as well as the No. 1 African American-Run Business in 2010.  Her company was ranked the 5th Fastest-Growing Privately Owned Company in the Health Industry in America. For her exceptional contributions, Brown was invited to speak at the Most Powerful Women Summit in Washington, D.C. with President Barack Obama, the Honorable Hillary Rodham Clinton, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, business tycoon Warren Buffett, and many other C-level women executives of the nation’s top companies.

FedEx Global Education Center, Nelson Mandela Auditorium

Reserve your seats now! Sign up here! There will be a Networking Event following Monday’s kickoff panel, FedEx Global Education Center, Atrium from 7:30-8:30pm. Meet, greet, and mingle with GEW panelists and attendees!


November 17, 2014
7:30 pm