Speakers

Speakers for “Shake It Up” Announced!

SHAKE IT UP challenges the expected, agitates the norm, and greets ideas with opportunity to flourish.

What status quo needs a shakedown? How do we disrupt but not divide? What relationships, movements, environments, or technologies are responding to calls for change or compromise?

Meet our speakers below will solve these questions with big, bold ideas in action at our Oct. 18, 2017 event! (Below are demo placeholders using a couple 2016 speakers).


Don Alderman

An investment and wealth manager by day and Costa Rican farmer by vacation, this inveterate traveler believes responsible tourism can improve lives and reduce suffering in destination communities.

Jack Alterman

With refined aperture and clear focus, this Charleston native has been documenting his community for decades, using his lens to capture the dynamics of rootedness, change and gentrification.

Dan Bellack

A psychology professor for the past 30 years, Dan Bellack is driven by his curiosity for what makes us human. Through his research for how people think, he helps us learn more about how we naturally operate, and how we can improve our thinking to create deep, lasting impact in the world.  

Li Chang

As a Boeing engineer and technical fellow, Li Chang is always asking: how can we do this better? A leader that invokes the leaders within his team, his work is focused on leveraging complementary strengths to build a culture of better products, experiences, and innovations.

Feral Creative

A child at heart and a fabrication artist by trade, Kris Manning is the fearless leader of Feral Creative, a troupe of professional puppeteers and vibrant stage performers bringing their ‘wild’ side to the city of Charleston and beyond. Appearing with Ms. Manning are Becky Becker, Geoffrey Cormier, Henry Riggs and Maari Suorsa.

Edie Cusack

A passionate advocate and educator for over 30 years, Edie Cusack turns disabilities into opportunities. As the founder of the College of Charleston’s REACH Program, she works with universities to build inclusive programs that unlock entire new worlds for students with unique gifts to give.

Sarayu Das

This South Carolina-based high school student, researcher, and scientist is on a mission to increase consciousness about water contamination – especially pharmaceutical contamination – starting in her own backyard.

Philip Dustan

Phillip Dustan is a College of Charleston biology professor passionate about spreading the news: the future of Charleston’s underwater ecosystem is in our hands. Equal parts researcher and messenger, he’s shaking up how we see – and save – our reefs.

Brion Eriksen

2019 Artist Mary Edna Fraser

From outer space to the deep blue sea, this artist’s creative perspective captures the complex, wondrous patterns of land and water from high above.

Jason Kerestes

An engineer and researcher, Jason Kerestes’s days are spent pioneering the next big advance in robotics, while educating his industry about the role they’ll play in the world’s economic future.

Michael Kleiss

A Clemson University School of Architecture professor, Michael Kleiss believes that the bridge between present and future is built brick by (Lego!) brick as a way of embracing playfulness in the way we architect our worlds.

Jacobo Mintzer

The intersection of art and science is closer than ever, so let the music play on. This researcher explores how music stimulates the brain and opens doors for new medical treatments.Want to see how a man with Parkinson’s disease who can barely walk with the aid of a walker minutes before start to walk and even swag without help to the tune of a favorite song. With new techniques in brain mapping, studies are showing a distinct connection between music and brain activity. Music can act like a pace maker to the brain like a pace maker works for the heart. This discovery has the potential to drastically impact the critical research of devastating brain diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases.

An enthusiastic scholar, professor and researcher, Dr. Jacob Mintzer moved to Charleston in 1991 with his wife and has rooted his family here ever since. He serves as the Executive Director of the Clinical Biotechnology Research Institute at Roper St. Francis Healthcare, as well as a professor at the College of Health Professions as MUSC. When he’s not leading the fight against neurological diseases, he can be found listening to any genre of music in his perpetual quest for the rhythm that has seemingly always evaded him. His ultimate goal is to see his beloved community become an international hub for bridging the gap between neuroscience and the arts.

Steve Palmer

A celebrated restaurateur who began washing dishes at age 13, Steve Palmer knows firsthand how the strains and successes of his industry can drive employees to the darkest of places. With a focus on service, he’s committed to flipping the tables on professional support

Christan Rainey

A full-time father, fiancé, and fire department engineer, Christan embodies commitment in action. Now, he’s calling men to take up the same cause through Men Against Domestic Violence (MAD USA), a grassroots organization that’s putting violence at home to rest.

Rene Russell

A professional musician for two decades, Rene Russell lives inside her songs as much as her songs live inside her. Real and raw, her performances remind us of the truth she sings: that with love, we can accomplish anything.

Tina Singleton

A fashion executive turned international development aid turned Johns Island gardener, Tina Singleton is no stranger to reinvention. In fact, she’s no stranger at all in Charleston. As the founder of Transformation Table, an organization for inclusivity through food, she’s bringing the city’s diverse neighbors together, one meal at a time.

Jake Stauch

A former cognitive researcher, Jake Stauch is now the founder of NeuroPlus, a company helping children find focus and self-control through brain-sensing technology that supports their ever growing, changing nervous systems.

Brian Sullivan

A clinical psychologist, College of Charleston professor, and software company co-founder, Brian Sullivan uses his talents and insatiable curiosity for how people think and behave to better understand how technology can bring us together, not push us apart.

Ranky Tanky

Get down with Ranky Tanky, a Gullah quintet, celebrating the timeless sounds of the Southeastern Sea Island region with more contemporary arrangements. Group members include: Quentin Baxter, Calvin Baxter, Kevin Hamilton, Quiana Parler, Clay Ross and Charlton Singleton.

Emily Torchiana

A former College of Charleston student, Emily Torchiana has emerged from the shadows of cyberbullying and suicide attempts to turn life’s darkest moments into moments of meaning for others who need a mental health hero.

Vickie Waller

By using leading edge technology as a constructive business generation and marketing tool, this CEO of SBG Technologies, a local B2B tech business, is out to reposition small and family businesses to capture the benefits of today’s e-marketplace.

Don Alderman

An investment and wealth manager by day and Costa Rican farmer by vacation, this inveterate traveler believes responsible tourism can improve lives and reduce suffering in destination communities.

Jack Alterman

With refined aperture and clear focus, this Charleston native has been documenting his community for decades, using his lens to capture the dynamics of rootedness, change and gentrification.

Dan Bellack

A psychology professor for the past 30 years, Dan Bellack is driven by his curiosity for what makes us human. Through his research for how people think, he helps us learn more about how we naturally operate, and how we can improve our thinking to create deep, lasting impact in the world.  

Li Chang

As a Boeing engineer and technical fellow, Li Chang is always asking: how can we do this better? A leader that invokes the leaders within his team, his work is focused on leveraging complementary strengths to build a culture of better products, experiences, and innovations.

Feral Creative

A child at heart and a fabrication artist by trade, Kris Manning is the fearless leader of Feral Creative, a troupe of professional puppeteers and vibrant stage performers bringing their ‘wild’ side to the city of Charleston and beyond. Appearing with Ms. Manning are Becky Becker, Geoffrey Cormier, Henry Riggs and Maari Suorsa.

Edie Cusack

A passionate advocate and educator for over 30 years, Edie Cusack turns disabilities into opportunities. As the founder of the College of Charleston’s REACH Program, she works with universities to build inclusive programs that unlock entire new worlds for students with unique gifts to give.

Sarayu Das

This South Carolina-based high school student, researcher, and scientist is on a mission to increase consciousness about water contamination – especially pharmaceutical contamination – starting in her own backyard.

Philip Dustan

Phillip Dustan is a College of Charleston biology professor passionate about spreading the news: the future of Charleston’s underwater ecosystem is in our hands. Equal parts researcher and messenger, he’s shaking up how we see – and save – our reefs.

Brion Eriksen

2019 Artist Mary Edna Fraser

From outer space to the deep blue sea, this artist’s creative perspective captures the complex, wondrous patterns of land and water from high above.

Jason Kerestes

An engineer and researcher, Jason Kerestes’s days are spent pioneering the next big advance in robotics, while educating his industry about the role they’ll play in the world’s economic future.

Michael Kleiss

A Clemson University School of Architecture professor, Michael Kleiss believes that the bridge between present and future is built brick by (Lego!) brick as a way of embracing playfulness in the way we architect our worlds.

Jacobo Mintzer

The intersection of art and science is closer than ever, so let the music play on. This researcher explores how music stimulates the brain and opens doors for new medical treatments.Want to see how a man with Parkinson’s disease who can barely walk with the aid of a walker minutes before start to walk and even swag without help to the tune of a favorite song. With new techniques in brain mapping, studies are showing a distinct connection between music and brain activity. Music can act like a pace maker to the brain like a pace maker works for the heart. This discovery has the potential to drastically impact the critical research of devastating brain diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases.

An enthusiastic scholar, professor and researcher, Dr. Jacob Mintzer moved to Charleston in 1991 with his wife and has rooted his family here ever since. He serves as the Executive Director of the Clinical Biotechnology Research Institute at Roper St. Francis Healthcare, as well as a professor at the College of Health Professions as MUSC. When he’s not leading the fight against neurological diseases, he can be found listening to any genre of music in his perpetual quest for the rhythm that has seemingly always evaded him. His ultimate goal is to see his beloved community become an international hub for bridging the gap between neuroscience and the arts.

Steve Palmer

A celebrated restaurateur who began washing dishes at age 13, Steve Palmer knows firsthand how the strains and successes of his industry can drive employees to the darkest of places. With a focus on service, he’s committed to flipping the tables on professional support

Christan Rainey

A full-time father, fiancé, and fire department engineer, Christan embodies commitment in action. Now, he’s calling men to take up the same cause through Men Against Domestic Violence (MAD USA), a grassroots organization that’s putting violence at home to rest.

Rene Russell

A professional musician for two decades, Rene Russell lives inside her songs as much as her songs live inside her. Real and raw, her performances remind us of the truth she sings: that with love, we can accomplish anything.

Tina Singleton

A fashion executive turned international development aid turned Johns Island gardener, Tina Singleton is no stranger to reinvention. In fact, she’s no stranger at all in Charleston. As the founder of Transformation Table, an organization for inclusivity through food, she’s bringing the city’s diverse neighbors together, one meal at a time.

Jake Stauch

A former cognitive researcher, Jake Stauch is now the founder of NeuroPlus, a company helping children find focus and self-control through brain-sensing technology that supports their ever growing, changing nervous systems.

Brian Sullivan

A clinical psychologist, College of Charleston professor, and software company co-founder, Brian Sullivan uses his talents and insatiable curiosity for how people think and behave to better understand how technology can bring us together, not push us apart.

Ranky Tanky

Get down with Ranky Tanky, a Gullah quintet, celebrating the timeless sounds of the Southeastern Sea Island region with more contemporary arrangements. Group members include: Quentin Baxter, Calvin Baxter, Kevin Hamilton, Quiana Parler, Clay Ross and Charlton Singleton.

Emily Torchiana

A former College of Charleston student, Emily Torchiana has emerged from the shadows of cyberbullying and suicide attempts to turn life’s darkest moments into moments of meaning for others who need a mental health hero.

Vickie Waller

By using leading edge technology as a constructive business generation and marketing tool, this CEO of SBG Technologies, a local B2B tech business, is out to reposition small and family businesses to capture the benefits of today’s e-marketplace.

Don Alderman

An investment and wealth manager by day and Costa Rican farmer by vacation, this inveterate traveler believes responsible tourism can improve lives and reduce suffering in destination communities.

Jack Alterman

With refined aperture and clear focus, this Charleston native has been documenting his community for decades, using his lens to capture the dynamics of rootedness, change and gentrification.

Dan Bellack

A psychology professor for the past 30 years, Dan Bellack is driven by his curiosity for what makes us human. Through his research for how people think, he helps us learn more about how we naturally operate, and how we can improve our thinking to create deep, lasting impact in the world.  

Li Chang

As a Boeing engineer and technical fellow, Li Chang is always asking: how can we do this better? A leader that invokes the leaders within his team, his work is focused on leveraging complementary strengths to build a culture of better products, experiences, and innovations.

Feral Creative

A child at heart and a fabrication artist by trade, Kris Manning is the fearless leader of Feral Creative, a troupe of professional puppeteers and vibrant stage performers bringing their ‘wild’ side to the city of Charleston and beyond. Appearing with Ms. Manning are Becky Becker, Geoffrey Cormier, Henry Riggs and Maari Suorsa.

Edie Cusack

A passionate advocate and educator for over 30 years, Edie Cusack turns disabilities into opportunities. As the founder of the College of Charleston’s REACH Program, she works with universities to build inclusive programs that unlock entire new worlds for students with unique gifts to give.

Sarayu Das

This South Carolina-based high school student, researcher, and scientist is on a mission to increase consciousness about water contamination – especially pharmaceutical contamination – starting in her own backyard.

Philip Dustan

Phillip Dustan is a College of Charleston biology professor passionate about spreading the news: the future of Charleston’s underwater ecosystem is in our hands. Equal parts researcher and messenger, he’s shaking up how we see – and save – our reefs.

Brion Eriksen

2019 Artist Mary Edna Fraser

From outer space to the deep blue sea, this artist’s creative perspective captures the complex, wondrous patterns of land and water from high above.

Jason Kerestes

An engineer and researcher, Jason Kerestes’s days are spent pioneering the next big advance in robotics, while educating his industry about the role they’ll play in the world’s economic future.

Michael Kleiss

A Clemson University School of Architecture professor, Michael Kleiss believes that the bridge between present and future is built brick by (Lego!) brick as a way of embracing playfulness in the way we architect our worlds.

Jacobo Mintzer

The intersection of art and science is closer than ever, so let the music play on. This researcher explores how music stimulates the brain and opens doors for new medical treatments.Want to see how a man with Parkinson’s disease who can barely walk with the aid of a walker minutes before start to walk and even swag without help to the tune of a favorite song. With new techniques in brain mapping, studies are showing a distinct connection between music and brain activity. Music can act like a pace maker to the brain like a pace maker works for the heart. This discovery has the potential to drastically impact the critical research of devastating brain diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases.

An enthusiastic scholar, professor and researcher, Dr. Jacob Mintzer moved to Charleston in 1991 with his wife and has rooted his family here ever since. He serves as the Executive Director of the Clinical Biotechnology Research Institute at Roper St. Francis Healthcare, as well as a professor at the College of Health Professions as MUSC. When he’s not leading the fight against neurological diseases, he can be found listening to any genre of music in his perpetual quest for the rhythm that has seemingly always evaded him. His ultimate goal is to see his beloved community become an international hub for bridging the gap between neuroscience and the arts.

Steve Palmer

A celebrated restaurateur who began washing dishes at age 13, Steve Palmer knows firsthand how the strains and successes of his industry can drive employees to the darkest of places. With a focus on service, he’s committed to flipping the tables on professional support

Christan Rainey

A full-time father, fiancé, and fire department engineer, Christan embodies commitment in action. Now, he’s calling men to take up the same cause through Men Against Domestic Violence (MAD USA), a grassroots organization that’s putting violence at home to rest.

Rene Russell

A professional musician for two decades, Rene Russell lives inside her songs as much as her songs live inside her. Real and raw, her performances remind us of the truth she sings: that with love, we can accomplish anything.

Tina Singleton

A fashion executive turned international development aid turned Johns Island gardener, Tina Singleton is no stranger to reinvention. In fact, she’s no stranger at all in Charleston. As the founder of Transformation Table, an organization for inclusivity through food, she’s bringing the city’s diverse neighbors together, one meal at a time.

Jake Stauch

A former cognitive researcher, Jake Stauch is now the founder of NeuroPlus, a company helping children find focus and self-control through brain-sensing technology that supports their ever growing, changing nervous systems.

Brian Sullivan

A clinical psychologist, College of Charleston professor, and software company co-founder, Brian Sullivan uses his talents and insatiable curiosity for how people think and behave to better understand how technology can bring us together, not push us apart.

Ranky Tanky

Get down with Ranky Tanky, a Gullah quintet, celebrating the timeless sounds of the Southeastern Sea Island region with more contemporary arrangements. Group members include: Quentin Baxter, Calvin Baxter, Kevin Hamilton, Quiana Parler, Clay Ross and Charlton Singleton.

Emily Torchiana

A former College of Charleston student, Emily Torchiana has emerged from the shadows of cyberbullying and suicide attempts to turn life’s darkest moments into moments of meaning for others who need a mental health hero.

Vickie Waller

By using leading edge technology as a constructive business generation and marketing tool, this CEO of SBG Technologies, a local B2B tech business, is out to reposition small and family businesses to capture the benefits of today’s e-marketplace.

Don Alderman

An investment and wealth manager by day and Costa Rican farmer by vacation, this inveterate traveler believes responsible tourism can improve lives and reduce suffering in destination communities.

Jack Alterman

With refined aperture and clear focus, this Charleston native has been documenting his community for decades, using his lens to capture the dynamics of rootedness, change and gentrification.

Dan Bellack

A psychology professor for the past 30 years, Dan Bellack is driven by his curiosity for what makes us human. Through his research for how people think, he helps us learn more about how we naturally operate, and how we can improve our thinking to create deep, lasting impact in the world.  

Li Chang

As a Boeing engineer and technical fellow, Li Chang is always asking: how can we do this better? A leader that invokes the leaders within his team, his work is focused on leveraging complementary strengths to build a culture of better products, experiences, and innovations.

Feral Creative

A child at heart and a fabrication artist by trade, Kris Manning is the fearless leader of Feral Creative, a troupe of professional puppeteers and vibrant stage performers bringing their ‘wild’ side to the city of Charleston and beyond. Appearing with Ms. Manning are Becky Becker, Geoffrey Cormier, Henry Riggs and Maari Suorsa.

Edie Cusack

A passionate advocate and educator for over 30 years, Edie Cusack turns disabilities into opportunities. As the founder of the College of Charleston’s REACH Program, she works with universities to build inclusive programs that unlock entire new worlds for students with unique gifts to give.

Sarayu Das

This South Carolina-based high school student, researcher, and scientist is on a mission to increase consciousness about water contamination – especially pharmaceutical contamination – starting in her own backyard.

Philip Dustan

Phillip Dustan is a College of Charleston biology professor passionate about spreading the news: the future of Charleston’s underwater ecosystem is in our hands. Equal parts researcher and messenger, he’s shaking up how we see – and save – our reefs.

Brion Eriksen

2019 Artist Mary Edna Fraser

From outer space to the deep blue sea, this artist’s creative perspective captures the complex, wondrous patterns of land and water from high above.

Jason Kerestes

An engineer and researcher, Jason Kerestes’s days are spent pioneering the next big advance in robotics, while educating his industry about the role they’ll play in the world’s economic future.

Michael Kleiss

A Clemson University School of Architecture professor, Michael Kleiss believes that the bridge between present and future is built brick by (Lego!) brick as a way of embracing playfulness in the way we architect our worlds.

Jacobo Mintzer

The intersection of art and science is closer than ever, so let the music play on. This researcher explores how music stimulates the brain and opens doors for new medical treatments.Want to see how a man with Parkinson’s disease who can barely walk with the aid of a walker minutes before start to walk and even swag without help to the tune of a favorite song. With new techniques in brain mapping, studies are showing a distinct connection between music and brain activity. Music can act like a pace maker to the brain like a pace maker works for the heart. This discovery has the potential to drastically impact the critical research of devastating brain diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases.

An enthusiastic scholar, professor and researcher, Dr. Jacob Mintzer moved to Charleston in 1991 with his wife and has rooted his family here ever since. He serves as the Executive Director of the Clinical Biotechnology Research Institute at Roper St. Francis Healthcare, as well as a professor at the College of Health Professions as MUSC. When he’s not leading the fight against neurological diseases, he can be found listening to any genre of music in his perpetual quest for the rhythm that has seemingly always evaded him. His ultimate goal is to see his beloved community become an international hub for bridging the gap between neuroscience and the arts.

Steve Palmer

A celebrated restaurateur who began washing dishes at age 13, Steve Palmer knows firsthand how the strains and successes of his industry can drive employees to the darkest of places. With a focus on service, he’s committed to flipping the tables on professional support

Christan Rainey

A full-time father, fiancé, and fire department engineer, Christan embodies commitment in action. Now, he’s calling men to take up the same cause through Men Against Domestic Violence (MAD USA), a grassroots organization that’s putting violence at home to rest.

Rene Russell

A professional musician for two decades, Rene Russell lives inside her songs as much as her songs live inside her. Real and raw, her performances remind us of the truth she sings: that with love, we can accomplish anything.

Tina Singleton

A fashion executive turned international development aid turned Johns Island gardener, Tina Singleton is no stranger to reinvention. In fact, she’s no stranger at all in Charleston. As the founder of Transformation Table, an organization for inclusivity through food, she’s bringing the city’s diverse neighbors together, one meal at a time.

Jake Stauch

A former cognitive researcher, Jake Stauch is now the founder of NeuroPlus, a company helping children find focus and self-control through brain-sensing technology that supports their ever growing, changing nervous systems.

Brian Sullivan

A clinical psychologist, College of Charleston professor, and software company co-founder, Brian Sullivan uses his talents and insatiable curiosity for how people think and behave to better understand how technology can bring us together, not push us apart.

Ranky Tanky

Get down with Ranky Tanky, a Gullah quintet, celebrating the timeless sounds of the Southeastern Sea Island region with more contemporary arrangements. Group members include: Quentin Baxter, Calvin Baxter, Kevin Hamilton, Quiana Parler, Clay Ross and Charlton Singleton.

Emily Torchiana

A former College of Charleston student, Emily Torchiana has emerged from the shadows of cyberbullying and suicide attempts to turn life’s darkest moments into moments of meaning for others who need a mental health hero.

Vickie Waller

By using leading edge technology as a constructive business generation and marketing tool, this CEO of SBG Technologies, a local B2B tech business, is out to reposition small and family businesses to capture the benefits of today’s e-marketplace.

Don Alderman

An investment and wealth manager by day and Costa Rican farmer by vacation, this inveterate traveler believes responsible tourism can improve lives and reduce suffering in destination communities.

Jack Alterman

With refined aperture and clear focus, this Charleston native has been documenting his community for decades, using his lens to capture the dynamics of rootedness, change and gentrification.

Dan Bellack

A psychology professor for the past 30 years, Dan Bellack is driven by his curiosity for what makes us human. Through his research for how people think, he helps us learn more about how we naturally operate, and how we can improve our thinking to create deep, lasting impact in the world.  

Li Chang

As a Boeing engineer and technical fellow, Li Chang is always asking: how can we do this better? A leader that invokes the leaders within his team, his work is focused on leveraging complementary strengths to build a culture of better products, experiences, and innovations.

Feral Creative

A child at heart and a fabrication artist by trade, Kris Manning is the fearless leader of Feral Creative, a troupe of professional puppeteers and vibrant stage performers bringing their ‘wild’ side to the city of Charleston and beyond. Appearing with Ms. Manning are Becky Becker, Geoffrey Cormier, Henry Riggs and Maari Suorsa.

Edie Cusack

A passionate advocate and educator for over 30 years, Edie Cusack turns disabilities into opportunities. As the founder of the College of Charleston’s REACH Program, she works with universities to build inclusive programs that unlock entire new worlds for students with unique gifts to give.

Sarayu Das

This South Carolina-based high school student, researcher, and scientist is on a mission to increase consciousness about water contamination – especially pharmaceutical contamination – starting in her own backyard.

Philip Dustan

Phillip Dustan is a College of Charleston biology professor passionate about spreading the news: the future of Charleston’s underwater ecosystem is in our hands. Equal parts researcher and messenger, he’s shaking up how we see – and save – our reefs.

Brion Eriksen

2019 Artist Mary Edna Fraser

From outer space to the deep blue sea, this artist’s creative perspective captures the complex, wondrous patterns of land and water from high above.

Jason Kerestes

An engineer and researcher, Jason Kerestes’s days are spent pioneering the next big advance in robotics, while educating his industry about the role they’ll play in the world’s economic future.

Michael Kleiss

A Clemson University School of Architecture professor, Michael Kleiss believes that the bridge between present and future is built brick by (Lego!) brick as a way of embracing playfulness in the way we architect our worlds.

Jacobo Mintzer

The intersection of art and science is closer than ever, so let the music play on. This researcher explores how music stimulates the brain and opens doors for new medical treatments.Want to see how a man with Parkinson’s disease who can barely walk with the aid of a walker minutes before start to walk and even swag without help to the tune of a favorite song. With new techniques in brain mapping, studies are showing a distinct connection between music and brain activity. Music can act like a pace maker to the brain like a pace maker works for the heart. This discovery has the potential to drastically impact the critical research of devastating brain diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases.

An enthusiastic scholar, professor and researcher, Dr. Jacob Mintzer moved to Charleston in 1991 with his wife and has rooted his family here ever since. He serves as the Executive Director of the Clinical Biotechnology Research Institute at Roper St. Francis Healthcare, as well as a professor at the College of Health Professions as MUSC. When he’s not leading the fight against neurological diseases, he can be found listening to any genre of music in his perpetual quest for the rhythm that has seemingly always evaded him. His ultimate goal is to see his beloved community become an international hub for bridging the gap between neuroscience and the arts.

Steve Palmer

A celebrated restaurateur who began washing dishes at age 13, Steve Palmer knows firsthand how the strains and successes of his industry can drive employees to the darkest of places. With a focus on service, he’s committed to flipping the tables on professional support

Christan Rainey

A full-time father, fiancé, and fire department engineer, Christan embodies commitment in action. Now, he’s calling men to take up the same cause through Men Against Domestic Violence (MAD USA), a grassroots organization that’s putting violence at home to rest.

Rene Russell

A professional musician for two decades, Rene Russell lives inside her songs as much as her songs live inside her. Real and raw, her performances remind us of the truth she sings: that with love, we can accomplish anything.

Tina Singleton

A fashion executive turned international development aid turned Johns Island gardener, Tina Singleton is no stranger to reinvention. In fact, she’s no stranger at all in Charleston. As the founder of Transformation Table, an organization for inclusivity through food, she’s bringing the city’s diverse neighbors together, one meal at a time.

Jake Stauch

A former cognitive researcher, Jake Stauch is now the founder of NeuroPlus, a company helping children find focus and self-control through brain-sensing technology that supports their ever growing, changing nervous systems.

Brian Sullivan

A clinical psychologist, College of Charleston professor, and software company co-founder, Brian Sullivan uses his talents and insatiable curiosity for how people think and behave to better understand how technology can bring us together, not push us apart.

Ranky Tanky

Get down with Ranky Tanky, a Gullah quintet, celebrating the timeless sounds of the Southeastern Sea Island region with more contemporary arrangements. Group members include: Quentin Baxter, Calvin Baxter, Kevin Hamilton, Quiana Parler, Clay Ross and Charlton Singleton.

Emily Torchiana

A former College of Charleston student, Emily Torchiana has emerged from the shadows of cyberbullying and suicide attempts to turn life’s darkest moments into moments of meaning for others who need a mental health hero.

Vickie Waller

By using leading edge technology as a constructive business generation and marketing tool, this CEO of SBG Technologies, a local B2B tech business, is out to reposition small and family businesses to capture the benefits of today’s e-marketplace.

Don Alderman

An investment and wealth manager by day and Costa Rican farmer by vacation, this inveterate traveler believes responsible tourism can improve lives and reduce suffering in destination communities.

Jack Alterman

With refined aperture and clear focus, this Charleston native has been documenting his community for decades, using his lens to capture the dynamics of rootedness, change and gentrification.

Dan Bellack

A psychology professor for the past 30 years, Dan Bellack is driven by his curiosity for what makes us human. Through his research for how people think, he helps us learn more about how we naturally operate, and how we can improve our thinking to create deep, lasting impact in the world.  

Li Chang

As a Boeing engineer and technical fellow, Li Chang is always asking: how can we do this better? A leader that invokes the leaders within his team, his work is focused on leveraging complementary strengths to build a culture of better products, experiences, and innovations.

Feral Creative

A child at heart and a fabrication artist by trade, Kris Manning is the fearless leader of Feral Creative, a troupe of professional puppeteers and vibrant stage performers bringing their ‘wild’ side to the city of Charleston and beyond. Appearing with Ms. Manning are Becky Becker, Geoffrey Cormier, Henry Riggs and Maari Suorsa.

Edie Cusack

A passionate advocate and educator for over 30 years, Edie Cusack turns disabilities into opportunities. As the founder of the College of Charleston’s REACH Program, she works with universities to build inclusive programs that unlock entire new worlds for students with unique gifts to give.

Sarayu Das

This South Carolina-based high school student, researcher, and scientist is on a mission to increase consciousness about water contamination – especially pharmaceutical contamination – starting in her own backyard.

Philip Dustan

Phillip Dustan is a College of Charleston biology professor passionate about spreading the news: the future of Charleston’s underwater ecosystem is in our hands. Equal parts researcher and messenger, he’s shaking up how we see – and save – our reefs.

Brion Eriksen

2019 Artist Mary Edna Fraser

From outer space to the deep blue sea, this artist’s creative perspective captures the complex, wondrous patterns of land and water from high above.

Jason Kerestes

An engineer and researcher, Jason Kerestes’s days are spent pioneering the next big advance in robotics, while educating his industry about the role they’ll play in the world’s economic future.

Michael Kleiss

A Clemson University School of Architecture professor, Michael Kleiss believes that the bridge between present and future is built brick by (Lego!) brick as a way of embracing playfulness in the way we architect our worlds.

Jacobo Mintzer

The intersection of art and science is closer than ever, so let the music play on. This researcher explores how music stimulates the brain and opens doors for new medical treatments.Want to see how a man with Parkinson’s disease who can barely walk with the aid of a walker minutes before start to walk and even swag without help to the tune of a favorite song. With new techniques in brain mapping, studies are showing a distinct connection between music and brain activity. Music can act like a pace maker to the brain like a pace maker works for the heart. This discovery has the potential to drastically impact the critical research of devastating brain diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases.

An enthusiastic scholar, professor and researcher, Dr. Jacob Mintzer moved to Charleston in 1991 with his wife and has rooted his family here ever since. He serves as the Executive Director of the Clinical Biotechnology Research Institute at Roper St. Francis Healthcare, as well as a professor at the College of Health Professions as MUSC. When he’s not leading the fight against neurological diseases, he can be found listening to any genre of music in his perpetual quest for the rhythm that has seemingly always evaded him. His ultimate goal is to see his beloved community become an international hub for bridging the gap between neuroscience and the arts.

Steve Palmer

A celebrated restaurateur who began washing dishes at age 13, Steve Palmer knows firsthand how the strains and successes of his industry can drive employees to the darkest of places. With a focus on service, he’s committed to flipping the tables on professional support

Christan Rainey

A full-time father, fiancé, and fire department engineer, Christan embodies commitment in action. Now, he’s calling men to take up the same cause through Men Against Domestic Violence (MAD USA), a grassroots organization that’s putting violence at home to rest.

Rene Russell

A professional musician for two decades, Rene Russell lives inside her songs as much as her songs live inside her. Real and raw, her performances remind us of the truth she sings: that with love, we can accomplish anything.

Tina Singleton

A fashion executive turned international development aid turned Johns Island gardener, Tina Singleton is no stranger to reinvention. In fact, she’s no stranger at all in Charleston. As the founder of Transformation Table, an organization for inclusivity through food, she’s bringing the city’s diverse neighbors together, one meal at a time.

Jake Stauch

A former cognitive researcher, Jake Stauch is now the founder of NeuroPlus, a company helping children find focus and self-control through brain-sensing technology that supports their ever growing, changing nervous systems.

Brian Sullivan

A clinical psychologist, College of Charleston professor, and software company co-founder, Brian Sullivan uses his talents and insatiable curiosity for how people think and behave to better understand how technology can bring us together, not push us apart.

Ranky Tanky

Get down with Ranky Tanky, a Gullah quintet, celebrating the timeless sounds of the Southeastern Sea Island region with more contemporary arrangements. Group members include: Quentin Baxter, Calvin Baxter, Kevin Hamilton, Quiana Parler, Clay Ross and Charlton Singleton.

Emily Torchiana

A former College of Charleston student, Emily Torchiana has emerged from the shadows of cyberbullying and suicide attempts to turn life’s darkest moments into moments of meaning for others who need a mental health hero.

Vickie Waller

By using leading edge technology as a constructive business generation and marketing tool, this CEO of SBG Technologies, a local B2B tech business, is out to reposition small and family businesses to capture the benefits of today’s e-marketplace.

Don Alderman

An investment and wealth manager by day and Costa Rican farmer by vacation, this inveterate traveler believes responsible tourism can improve lives and reduce suffering in destination communities.

Jack Alterman

With refined aperture and clear focus, this Charleston native has been documenting his community for decades, using his lens to capture the dynamics of rootedness, change and gentrification.

Dan Bellack

A psychology professor for the past 30 years, Dan Bellack is driven by his curiosity for what makes us human. Through his research for how people think, he helps us learn more about how we naturally operate, and how we can improve our thinking to create deep, lasting impact in the world.  

Li Chang

As a Boeing engineer and technical fellow, Li Chang is always asking: how can we do this better? A leader that invokes the leaders within his team, his work is focused on leveraging complementary strengths to build a culture of better products, experiences, and innovations.

Feral Creative

A child at heart and a fabrication artist by trade, Kris Manning is the fearless leader of Feral Creative, a troupe of professional puppeteers and vibrant stage performers bringing their ‘wild’ side to the city of Charleston and beyond. Appearing with Ms. Manning are Becky Becker, Geoffrey Cormier, Henry Riggs and Maari Suorsa.

Edie Cusack

A passionate advocate and educator for over 30 years, Edie Cusack turns disabilities into opportunities. As the founder of the College of Charleston’s REACH Program, she works with universities to build inclusive programs that unlock entire new worlds for students with unique gifts to give.

Sarayu Das

This South Carolina-based high school student, researcher, and scientist is on a mission to increase consciousness about water contamination – especially pharmaceutical contamination – starting in her own backyard.

Philip Dustan

Phillip Dustan is a College of Charleston biology professor passionate about spreading the news: the future of Charleston’s underwater ecosystem is in our hands. Equal parts researcher and messenger, he’s shaking up how we see – and save – our reefs.

Brion Eriksen

2019 Artist Mary Edna Fraser

From outer space to the deep blue sea, this artist’s creative perspective captures the complex, wondrous patterns of land and water from high above.

Jason Kerestes

An engineer and researcher, Jason Kerestes’s days are spent pioneering the next big advance in robotics, while educating his industry about the role they’ll play in the world’s economic future.

Michael Kleiss

A Clemson University School of Architecture professor, Michael Kleiss believes that the bridge between present and future is built brick by (Lego!) brick as a way of embracing playfulness in the way we architect our worlds.

Jacobo Mintzer

The intersection of art and science is closer than ever, so let the music play on. This researcher explores how music stimulates the brain and opens doors for new medical treatments.Want to see how a man with Parkinson’s disease who can barely walk with the aid of a walker minutes before start to walk and even swag without help to the tune of a favorite song. With new techniques in brain mapping, studies are showing a distinct connection between music and brain activity. Music can act like a pace maker to the brain like a pace maker works for the heart. This discovery has the potential to drastically impact the critical research of devastating brain diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases.

An enthusiastic scholar, professor and researcher, Dr. Jacob Mintzer moved to Charleston in 1991 with his wife and has rooted his family here ever since. He serves as the Executive Director of the Clinical Biotechnology Research Institute at Roper St. Francis Healthcare, as well as a professor at the College of Health Professions as MUSC. When he’s not leading the fight against neurological diseases, he can be found listening to any genre of music in his perpetual quest for the rhythm that has seemingly always evaded him. His ultimate goal is to see his beloved community become an international hub for bridging the gap between neuroscience and the arts.

Steve Palmer

A celebrated restaurateur who began washing dishes at age 13, Steve Palmer knows firsthand how the strains and successes of his industry can drive employees to the darkest of places. With a focus on service, he’s committed to flipping the tables on professional support

Christan Rainey

A full-time father, fiancé, and fire department engineer, Christan embodies commitment in action. Now, he’s calling men to take up the same cause through Men Against Domestic Violence (MAD USA), a grassroots organization that’s putting violence at home to rest.

Rene Russell

A professional musician for two decades, Rene Russell lives inside her songs as much as her songs live inside her. Real and raw, her performances remind us of the truth she sings: that with love, we can accomplish anything.

Tina Singleton

A fashion executive turned international development aid turned Johns Island gardener, Tina Singleton is no stranger to reinvention. In fact, she’s no stranger at all in Charleston. As the founder of Transformation Table, an organization for inclusivity through food, she’s bringing the city’s diverse neighbors together, one meal at a time.

Jake Stauch

A former cognitive researcher, Jake Stauch is now the founder of NeuroPlus, a company helping children find focus and self-control through brain-sensing technology that supports their ever growing, changing nervous systems.

Brian Sullivan

A clinical psychologist, College of Charleston professor, and software company co-founder, Brian Sullivan uses his talents and insatiable curiosity for how people think and behave to better understand how technology can bring us together, not push us apart.

Ranky Tanky

Get down with Ranky Tanky, a Gullah quintet, celebrating the timeless sounds of the Southeastern Sea Island region with more contemporary arrangements. Group members include: Quentin Baxter, Calvin Baxter, Kevin Hamilton, Quiana Parler, Clay Ross and Charlton Singleton.

Emily Torchiana

A former College of Charleston student, Emily Torchiana has emerged from the shadows of cyberbullying and suicide attempts to turn life’s darkest moments into moments of meaning for others who need a mental health hero.

Vickie Waller

By using leading edge technology as a constructive business generation and marketing tool, this CEO of SBG Technologies, a local B2B tech business, is out to reposition small and family businesses to capture the benefits of today’s e-marketplace.

Don Alderman

An investment and wealth manager by day and Costa Rican farmer by vacation, this inveterate traveler believes responsible tourism can improve lives and reduce suffering in destination communities.

Jack Alterman

With refined aperture and clear focus, this Charleston native has been documenting his community for decades, using his lens to capture the dynamics of rootedness, change and gentrification.

Dan Bellack

A psychology professor for the past 30 years, Dan Bellack is driven by his curiosity for what makes us human. Through his research for how people think, he helps us learn more about how we naturally operate, and how we can improve our thinking to create deep, lasting impact in the world.  

Li Chang

As a Boeing engineer and technical fellow, Li Chang is always asking: how can we do this better? A leader that invokes the leaders within his team, his work is focused on leveraging complementary strengths to build a culture of better products, experiences, and innovations.

Feral Creative

A child at heart and a fabrication artist by trade, Kris Manning is the fearless leader of Feral Creative, a troupe of professional puppeteers and vibrant stage performers bringing their ‘wild’ side to the city of Charleston and beyond. Appearing with Ms. Manning are Becky Becker, Geoffrey Cormier, Henry Riggs and Maari Suorsa.

Edie Cusack

A passionate advocate and educator for over 30 years, Edie Cusack turns disabilities into opportunities. As the founder of the College of Charleston’s REACH Program, she works with universities to build inclusive programs that unlock entire new worlds for students with unique gifts to give.

Sarayu Das

This South Carolina-based high school student, researcher, and scientist is on a mission to increase consciousness about water contamination – especially pharmaceutical contamination – starting in her own backyard.

Philip Dustan

Phillip Dustan is a College of Charleston biology professor passionate about spreading the news: the future of Charleston’s underwater ecosystem is in our hands. Equal parts researcher and messenger, he’s shaking up how we see – and save – our reefs.

Brion Eriksen

2019 Artist Mary Edna Fraser

From outer space to the deep blue sea, this artist’s creative perspective captures the complex, wondrous patterns of land and water from high above.

Jason Kerestes

An engineer and researcher, Jason Kerestes’s days are spent pioneering the next big advance in robotics, while educating his industry about the role they’ll play in the world’s economic future.

Michael Kleiss

A Clemson University School of Architecture professor, Michael Kleiss believes that the bridge between present and future is built brick by (Lego!) brick as a way of embracing playfulness in the way we architect our worlds.

Jacobo Mintzer

The intersection of art and science is closer than ever, so let the music play on. This researcher explores how music stimulates the brain and opens doors for new medical treatments.Want to see how a man with Parkinson’s disease who can barely walk with the aid of a walker minutes before start to walk and even swag without help to the tune of a favorite song. With new techniques in brain mapping, studies are showing a distinct connection between music and brain activity. Music can act like a pace maker to the brain like a pace maker works for the heart. This discovery has the potential to drastically impact the critical research of devastating brain diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases.

An enthusiastic scholar, professor and researcher, Dr. Jacob Mintzer moved to Charleston in 1991 with his wife and has rooted his family here ever since. He serves as the Executive Director of the Clinical Biotechnology Research Institute at Roper St. Francis Healthcare, as well as a professor at the College of Health Professions as MUSC. When he’s not leading the fight against neurological diseases, he can be found listening to any genre of music in his perpetual quest for the rhythm that has seemingly always evaded him. His ultimate goal is to see his beloved community become an international hub for bridging the gap between neuroscience and the arts.

Steve Palmer

A celebrated restaurateur who began washing dishes at age 13, Steve Palmer knows firsthand how the strains and successes of his industry can drive employees to the darkest of places. With a focus on service, he’s committed to flipping the tables on professional support

Christan Rainey

A full-time father, fiancé, and fire department engineer, Christan embodies commitment in action. Now, he’s calling men to take up the same cause through Men Against Domestic Violence (MAD USA), a grassroots organization that’s putting violence at home to rest.

Rene Russell

A professional musician for two decades, Rene Russell lives inside her songs as much as her songs live inside her. Real and raw, her performances remind us of the truth she sings: that with love, we can accomplish anything.

Tina Singleton

A fashion executive turned international development aid turned Johns Island gardener, Tina Singleton is no stranger to reinvention. In fact, she’s no stranger at all in Charleston. As the founder of Transformation Table, an organization for inclusivity through food, she’s bringing the city’s diverse neighbors together, one meal at a time.

Jake Stauch

A former cognitive researcher, Jake Stauch is now the founder of NeuroPlus, a company helping children find focus and self-control through brain-sensing technology that supports their ever growing, changing nervous systems.

Brian Sullivan

A clinical psychologist, College of Charleston professor, and software company co-founder, Brian Sullivan uses his talents and insatiable curiosity for how people think and behave to better understand how technology can bring us together, not push us apart.

Ranky Tanky

Get down with Ranky Tanky, a Gullah quintet, celebrating the timeless sounds of the Southeastern Sea Island region with more contemporary arrangements. Group members include: Quentin Baxter, Calvin Baxter, Kevin Hamilton, Quiana Parler, Clay Ross and Charlton Singleton.

Emily Torchiana

A former College of Charleston student, Emily Torchiana has emerged from the shadows of cyberbullying and suicide attempts to turn life’s darkest moments into moments of meaning for others who need a mental health hero.

Vickie Waller

By using leading edge technology as a constructive business generation and marketing tool, this CEO of SBG Technologies, a local B2B tech business, is out to reposition small and family businesses to capture the benefits of today’s e-marketplace.

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