Friends General Conference

Together we nurture the spiritual vitality of Friends

A Panel on Moving Forward: Visions of the Future

Evening Programs
Date and Time: 
Tuesday, June 30, 2020 - 8:00pm
Virtual Gathering 2020

Dr. Mica Estrada, Kallan Benson, Kenyatta James, and George Lakey will share their visions of how we, as Quakers in this society, can move forward into a shared vision of a better world for us all. Moderated by Laura Magnani.

Laura Magnani is the Program Director for the California Healing Justice Program of the American Friends Service Committee. She is author of two books: America’s First Penitentiary: A Two Hundred Year Old Failure (1990) and co-author with the late Harmon Wray of Beyond Prisons: A New Interfaith Paradigm for the Failed Prison System.(2006) She has a BA from the University of California (1971) in Ethnic Studies, and an MA from the Pacific School of Religion (1982) in Religion and Society. She was awarded an honorary doctorate from Haverford College in 2016. She is a member of the Strawberry Creek Friends Meeting Berkeley, CA.

 

Dr. Mica Estrada received her doctorate from Harvard University and is an Associate Professor at UC San Francisco. Her scholarship focuses on the ethnic populations who are historically underrepresented in higher education, are most vulnerable to impacts of climate change, and have potential to provide diverse and creative solutions to presssing challenges.

Mica is active in the Pacific Yearly Meeting, serves on the Geneva Quaker United National Committee, and follows her spiritual leading to make the world a kinder place. 

 

 

Watch Mica's video introduction:


                                                                                                                                                                                                                            

Kallan Benson, at 16, is already a veteran activist with 7 years of experience fighting for a sustainable future. Kallan is a national coordinator for Fridays For Future USA and integral to the international movement. She initiated the national strike movement on December 7, 2018, as one of the first two youths to establish strike locations. In less than one year, her efforts built a broad collaborative community, with approximately 300 weekly strike locations across the country.

Through the Mother Earth Project, she co-directs a collaborative art activism initiative, Parachutes for the Planet, which invites participants to express their concerns about the future through community art. The project, initiated by her own art parachute that represented the voices of 1600 students at the Peoples Climate March in 2017, has expanded world-wide, attracting the participation of nearly 3000 communities of youth.Because Kallan is an introvert who is often uncomfortable receiving attention, she is driven to seek creative ways to express her activism and ease others into action. She has earned the nickname "Butterfly" for a ubiquitous pair of wings from which she draws confidence in crowds. Greta Thunberg famously asserted, "You are never too small to make a difference." Those who work with Kallan quickly learn not to underestimate the "Butterfly" effect.

Watch Kallan's video introduction:


 

 

 

Kenyatta James is an experienced speaker and workshop host who specializes in helping communities understand the importance of culture. As a community organizer, he's to improve green spaces in Philadelphia and build an inclusive, resilient community. During his time as a social entrepreneur, he helped healthcare organizations connect with their audiences and improve health outcomes for diverse populations. He currently works as a business consultant and bookkeeper for the Germantown Mutual Aid Fund. He is a member of Green Street Monthly Meeting in Northwest Philadelphia.

 

 

 

Watch Kenyatta's video introduction:

 


 

 

George Lakey, 82, has been traveling in his ministry for equality and nonviolence  since 2016 with his most recent books, Viking Economics and How We Win. His first arrest was at a civil rights demonstration in March 1963, and most recent was January 10, 2020 while demanding the U.S. Congress respond to the climate crisis. He has taught at Swarthmore, Haverford, Pendle Hill, and Woodbrooke in England.  A member of Central Philadelphia Monthly Meeting, he’s led over 1500 social change workshops on five continents.

 

 

 

Watch George's video introduction:


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