Laura Klein, jazz pianist and composer, was born in New York City and started playing piano as a child, studying at the Manhattan School of Music. After receiving a degree in classical music from SUNY Buffalo, she started playing in a soul band and never looked back. She went on to study jazz at Berklee School of Music, performing at clubs and venues in the Boston/New England area. Klein relocated to the San Francisco Bay Area in 1984, where she has been actively performing and teaching ever since.
Gilles Raguin is a medical doctor, trained in internal medicine and infectious diseases, and a global health specialist with more than 20 years of experience with governmental and non-governmental organizations
Ronald Grigor Suny is the William H. Sewell Jr. Distinguished University Professor of History at the University of Michigan, Emeritus Professor of Political Science and History at the University of Chicago, and Senior Researcher at the National Research University – Higher School of Economics in Saint Petersburg, Russia. The grandson of the composer and ethnomusicologist Grikor Mirzaian Suni and a graduate of Swarthmore College and Columbia University, he taught at Oberlin College (1968-1981), as visiting professor of history at the University of California, Irvine (1987), and Stanford University (1995-1996). He was the first holder of the Alex Manoogian Chair in Modern Armenian History at the University of Michigan (1981-1995), where he founded and directed the Armenian Studies Program. He was Charles Tilly Collegiate Professor of Social and Political History at the University of Michigan from 2005 to 2015 and director of the Eisenberg Institute of Historical Studies from 2009 to 2012.
Scott is a lawyer, writer, teacher, and international development professional; she focusses on gender equity and education. She has worked with non-profits for over three decades, living in seven countries in Africa, Asia, and Europe, and traveling to 35 more. Scott created and produced a play, SPOILED, about violence and masculinity in India and the US; designs curricula for an educational venture; is writing a book about the lives of girls and nuns in a shelter home in India; and consults regularly with non-profits working in developing countries. She serves on the board of the UN Women USA, is President of the Gulf Coast Chapter of UN Women, and selects grantees for Dining for Women.
Alison Barlow is the Executive Director of the St. Petersburg Innovation District. Her role is to harness expertise in health science, marine science, education, and art to form unique collaborations. These multi-sector, cross discipline collaborations strive to identify innovative solutions that will grow the economic and social vibrancy of St. Petersburg and address key global issues.
John Lamb is an American jazz double bassist who was a member of the Duke Ellington Orchestra. Born in Vero Beach, Florida, he grew up as a child who loved playing music, specializing in the tuba. He left high school to join the United States Air Force as a musician in their military band and was stationed in Texas and Montana, where the long winters left him ample time to practice. When the band's usual string bass player was unavailable for a gig, the bandmaster asked Lamb if he could fill in, leading to his becoming the band's new string bassist. He credited his tuba experience with giving him the "feel" to pick up the string bass quickly, even without any prior experience.