2017 Speakers

Joshua Cogan

Joshua Cogan is an Emmy Award winning photographer and anthropologist whose work has taken him to 40 countries and 5 continents to produce his unique brand of ethnographic storytelling. Using his passion for culture, ecology and imagery, Cogan has consistently produced work across print, motion and web platforms. Recognition for those projects has come from standard bearers of journalism such as National Academy of Television and Sciences as well SXSW and Webby Awards for his partnerships creating new approaches of storytelling and cultural exchange. Joshua specializes in telling stories of culture and transitions. His clients include the World Health Organization, The United Nations, National Geographic, the Smithsonian Institution, Puma, New Balance, MAC AIDS fund, ESPN, The New Yorker, HBO, The Discovery Channel and many others.

Joshua Cogan

Joshua Cogan is an Emmy Award winning photographer and anthropologist whose work has taken him to 40 countries and 5 continents to produce his unique brand of ethnographic storytelling. Using his passion for culture, ecology and imagery, Cogan has consistently produced work across print, motion and web platforms. Recognition for those projects has come from standard bearers of journalism such as National Academy of Television and Sciences as well SXSW and Webby Awards for his partnerships creating new approaches of storytelling and cultural exchange. Joshua specializes in telling stories of culture and transitions. His clients include the World Health Organization, The United Nations, National Geographic, the Smithsonian Institution, Puma, New Balance, MAC AIDS fund, ESPN, The New Yorker, HBO, The Discovery Channel and many others.


Phil Hansen

Referred to by his fans as “the Artist for the People”, Phil Hansen is an internationally recognized multimedia artist, speaker, author and innovator– at the forefront of bringing art to a wider audience. Crashing irreverently through conventional boundaries, Phil works at the intersection of traditional art, electronic media, offbeat materials, and interactive experiences. He is most widely known for his meta­art, videos that document the creation process (sometimes even through destruction), showing millions that art is action, not just result.  Hansen’s work also extends deeply into traditional media with features on the Discovery Channel, Good Morning America, the Rachael Ray Show, Last Call with Carson Daly, Glamour and many more.  His work is sought-after by many influential clients including the Grammy Awards, Disney, Skype, Mazda and the Rockefeller Foundation. “We need to first be limited in order to become limitless.”- Phil Hansen

Phil Hansen

Referred to by his fans as “the Artist for the People”, Phil Hansen is an internationally recognized multimedia artist, speaker, author and innovator– at the forefront of bringing art to a wider audience. Crashing irreverently through conventional boundaries, Phil works at the intersection of traditional art, electronic media, offbeat materials, and interactive experiences. He is most widely known for his meta­art, videos that document the creation process (sometimes even through destruction), showing millions that art is action, not just result.  Hansen’s work also extends deeply into traditional media with features on the Discovery Channel, Good Morning America, the Rachael Ray Show, Last Call with Carson Daly, Glamour and many more.  His work is sought-after by many influential clients including the Grammy Awards, Disney, Skype, Mazda and the Rockefeller Foundation. “We need to first be limited in order to become limitless.”- Phil Hansen


Travis Mills

Travis Mills teaches and inspires audiences nationwide to “Never give up. Never quit.” no matter the obstacles or circumstances. On April 10, 2012, United States Army Staff Sergeant Travis Mills of the 82nd Airborne was critically injured on his third tour of duty in Afghanistan by an IED (improvised explosive device) while on patrol, losing portions of both legs and both arms. He is one of only five servicemen from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan ever to survive quadruple amputee injuries.

Thanks to his amazing strength, courage, an incredible will to live, the heroic actions of the men in his unit, the prayers of thousands, and all the healthcare providers at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center, near Washington D.C. In September 2013, Mills founded the Travis Mills Foundation, a nonprofit organization, formed to benefit and assist wounded and injured veterans. Mills and the foundation are actively involved with several veterans’ organizations namely, the Travis Mills Foundation Retreat in Maine.

Travis Mills

Travis Mills teaches and inspires audiences nationwide to “Never give up. Never quit.” no matter the obstacles or circumstances. On April 10, 2012, United States Army Staff Sergeant Travis Mills of the 82nd Airborne was critically injured on his third tour of duty in Afghanistan by an IED (improvised explosive device) while on patrol, losing portions of both legs and both arms. He is one of only five servicemen from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan ever to survive quadruple amputee injuries.

Thanks to his amazing strength, courage, an incredible will to live, the heroic actions of the men in his unit, the prayers of thousands, and all the healthcare providers at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center, near Washington D.C. In September 2013, Mills founded the Travis Mills Foundation, a nonprofit organization, formed to benefit and assist wounded and injured veterans. Mills and the foundation are actively involved with several veterans’ organizations namely, the Travis Mills Foundation Retreat in Maine.


Steven Johnson

Steven Johnson is the leading light of today’s interdisciplinary, collaborative, open-minded approach to innovation. His writings have influenced everything from cutting-edge ideas in urban planning to the battle against 21st-century terrorism. Steven was chosen by Prospect magazine as one of the Top Ten Brains of the Digital Future, and The Wall Street Journal called him “one of the most persuasive advocates for the role of collaboration in innovation.” Steven’s work on the history of innovation inspired the Emmy-nominated six-part series on PBS, HOW WE GOT TO NOW with Steven Johnson, that aired in the fall of 2014. The book version of How We Got To Now debuted at #4 on the New York Times bestseller list, and was a finalist for the PEN/E.O. Wilson Literary Science Writing Award. His most recent, Wonderland: How Play Made the Modern World, revolves around the creative power of play: ideas and innovations that set into motion the many momentous changes in science, technology, politics and society. Steven is also the author of the bestselling Where Good Ideas Come From: The Natural History of Innovation.

An innovator himself, Steven has co-created three influential sites: the pioneering online magazine FEED, the Webby-Award-winning community site, Plastic.com, and the hyperlocal media site — outside.in, which was acquired by AOL in 2011.

Steven Johnson

Steven Johnson is the leading light of today’s interdisciplinary, collaborative, open-minded approach to innovation. His writings have influenced everything from cutting-edge ideas in urban planning to the battle against 21st-century terrorism. Steven was chosen by Prospect magazine as one of the Top Ten Brains of the Digital Future, and The Wall Street Journal called him “one of the most persuasive advocates for the role of collaboration in innovation.” Steven’s work on the history of innovation inspired the Emmy-nominated six-part series on PBS, HOW WE GOT TO NOW with Steven Johnson, that aired in the fall of 2014. The book version of How We Got To Now debuted at #4 on the New York Times bestseller list, and was a finalist for the PEN/E.O. Wilson Literary Science Writing Award. His most recent, Wonderland: How Play Made the Modern World, revolves around the creative power of play: ideas and innovations that set into motion the many momentous changes in science, technology, politics and society. Steven is also the author of the bestselling Where Good Ideas Come From: The Natural History of Innovation.

An innovator himself, Steven has co-created three influential sites: the pioneering online magazine FEED, the Webby-Award-winning community site, Plastic.com, and the hyperlocal media site — outside.in, which was acquired by AOL in 2011.


CHOIR! CHOIR! CHOIR!

CHOIR! CHOIR! CHOIR! is the international singing phenomenon that exemplifies the best of creativity, collaboration, and community-building. In their speeches, founders Nobu Adilman and Daveed Goldman talk about these themes—but they make audiences feel them, too.

In 2011, Nobu Adilman and Daveed Goldman co-founded Choir! Choir! Choir!, a twice-weekly singing event with revolving participation from over 12,000 members that invites non-professional singers to belt out pop hits in venues across Toronto; no auditions or commitment required. Blurring the lines of audience and artist, the choir has performed with punk legend Patti Smith, Tegan and Sara, Sloan, and Hey Rosetta!, and at major events such as TEDx Toronto and The Polaris Music Prize Gala.

CHOIR! CHOIR! CHOIR!

CHOIR! CHOIR! CHOIR! is the international singing phenomenon that exemplifies the best of creativity, collaboration, and community-building. In their speeches, founders Nobu Adilman and Daveed Goldman talk about these themes—but they make audiences feel them, too.

In 2011, Nobu Adilman and Daveed Goldman co-founded Choir! Choir! Choir!, a twice-weekly singing event with revolving participation from over 12,000 members that invites non-professional singers to belt out pop hits in venues across Toronto; no auditions or commitment required. Blurring the lines of audience and artist, the choir has performed with punk legend Patti Smith, Tegan and Sara, Sloan, and Hey Rosetta!, and at major events such as TEDx Toronto and The Polaris Music Prize Gala.