The Value of Any Idea is directly related to the team that advances it.
Ramona Beltran (Ph.D) is one of the thought leaders in group healing and advancement. Her scholarship sits at the nexus where historical trauma, embodiment, and environmental/social determinants of health affect health and risk behaviors in indigenous communities. She specializes in centering cultural protective factors, strengths and resiliencies in indigenous populations as they work to interrupt the intergenerational transmission of historical trauma. She is currently Assistant Professor of Social Work at the University of Denver’s Graduate School of Social Work, where she teaches qualitative methods that incorporate innovative geo-spatial photographic technologies and digital storytelling to support community-based research.
Stephen Murphy-Shigematsu (Ph.D.) received his doctorate in psychology from Harvard University, was a respected professor at Tokyo University, a Fulbright scholar, and an APA fellow. Through narrative and use of self, he creates space in healing communities for mindful, appreciative, and connected inquiry to address where the local meets global in education and health. His teaching, research, counseling, and training focus on crossing human and institutional borders to connectedness and wholeness through respect for diverse forms of knowledge, worldviews and ways of being. He is the co-founder of Stanford University's LifeWorks program for integrative learning, active faculty at Fielding Graduate University, and president of the NPO Nichibei Care. As author of When Half is Whole, Multicultural Encounters, and Synergy, Healing and Empowerment, he demonstrated his space as a pioneering researcher in the well being of multiethnic families and identities.
Mark Gonzales (M.Ed) is a change maker, Chief Storyteller for multiple start-ups, and the CEO of the Institute of Narrative Growth. Uniquely aggregating design thinking with compelling narratives, he architects space and story to guide individuals and organizations to their fullest potential. His global vision and culturally relevant approaches has led him to work in over fifteen counties, with clients as diverse as: Ivy League universities, refugee camps, global agencies, corporate executives, and first time fathers like himself.
Ernesto Yerena Montejano was born in the small border town of El Centro, California, just 15 minutes north of Mexicali. Montejano lived and attended school in the United States but spent most of his free time with family south of the border in Mexicali. Constantly crossing the border gave him a unique perspective and in his eyes, the best of both worlds with access to the free education of the first world and the authentic cultural richness of the third world. He began college at the age of 17 and has since earned his BA in Visual Communications from the Art Institute. For several years, he has worked as an artist assistant to Shepard Fairey of Obey Giant. In 2008, Montejano founded the HECHO CON GANAS (HCG) publishing project. HCG is an experiment and art-publisher that explores the lengths one can reach through motivation, persistence and hard work. The phrase “hecho con ganas” is Spanish for “made with motivation/desire/passion.” HCG isn’t just a title, but a clear and powerful phrase that sums up the very spirit of the project. In his mixed media artwork, which is mostly comprised of stencil over collage, Montejano focuses on cultural subjects and issues within the Chicano community. His work has been shown in such galleries as White Walls and the Chinese Art Museum.
Soraya Hosni is a visual anthropologist and cultural diplomate who dreams in eight languages. She uses stories, video and photography as a mean to transmit intergenerational knowledge and empower isolated communities. Soraya Hosni received her M.A. in Sociology with honors from the Sorbonne University and is currently a Ph.D. candidate in Social Anthropology at the EHESS Paris. Her dissertation is an Inquiry into ways of knowing the volcano of Ambrym. She had worked extensively in communities in Paris, Senegal, Chile, Palestine, New Caledonia, & Vanuatu but has held series across continents and oceans in over 20 countries. She serves as ING coach for executives and everyday leaders looking to manifest change in their lives.