Joan Blades, Founding Partner, Living Room Conversations. Joan is cofounder of MomsRising.org and MoveOn.org, as well as coauthor of The Motherhood Manifesto and The Custom-Fit Workplace: Choose When, Where and How to Work and Boost the Bottom Line. Trained as an attorney/mediator with ten years experience as a software entrepreneur, Joan is also an artist, mother and true believer in the power of citizens and the need to rebuild respectful civil discourse and embrace our core shared values.
Debilyn Molineaux, Managing Partner, Living Room Conversations. She is a transformation partner. She works with visionaries and movements in support of a new national and global social contract focused on personal dignity and sovereignty. Her work highlights the relationships between individuals, institutions and governments for conscious transformation. She is the Managing Partner for Living Room Conversations, President of Coffee Party USA and Co-Director for Bridge Alliance, representing micro to macro to system approaches.
Ralph Benko, president of the Alinsky Center. Ralph has been called by a Washington Post Magazine columnist "the second most conservative man in the world" for his widely recognized advocacy of the gold standard. An internationally syndicated political columnist for the online edition of a major financial magazine, and a regular contributor to The Huffington Post. Ralph wrote the internationally awarding-winning book The Websters' Dictionary: How to Use the Web to Transform the World. He is editor-in-chief of The Committee To Unleash Prosperity's The Supply Side Blog and previously served as editor for the Lehrman institute's thegoldstandardnow.org. Ralph was detailed as a deputy general counsel to the Reagan White House, founded the Prosperity Caucus and was a member of the original Jack Kemp supply side movement.
John Gable, Founder and CEO, AllSides.com. John offers a unique combination of technology and politics. He served on the original teams for Microsoft Office, Mozilla at Netscape and ZoneAlarm at Check Point Software, and cofounded Kavi Corp (web-based collaboration and services). John was previously a Republican operative, working for three senate majority leaders (Howard Baker, Trent Lott and Mitch McConnell), the Republican National Committee and George H.W. Bush.
Mary Gaylord, Program Development Partner, Living Room Conversations. Mary has worked as a community mediator, victim-offender reconciliation specialist and facilitator of bully prevention programming for school-aged children. A chronic idealist, Mary has a strong passion for supporting individuals and organizations that endeavor to make our world a better place.
Jacob Hess, Lead Editor, RedBlueDictionary.org. "I am a die-hard fan and champion of Living Room Conversations because I am tired of relentless media sound bytes holding more power over the American mind than the actual stories, lives and experiences of our next door neighbors. While the current socio-political environment in the US certainly calls for many kinds of changes, I'm convinced there is one exceedingly simple place to start: Convening with people around us - in our own homes - and hearing them out deeply and fully. When I have done that, as I have done that, something has changed in me. And I can't go back! (And why would I want to . . . having these conversations is way too fun!!)"
Katie Page, Executive Administrative Partner, Living Room Conversations. Katie is a recent Sociology graduate of the University of Colorado at Boulder living in Denver, CO. She is a contributing Radical Generosity Team Member within the Bridge Alliance, and assistant to Debilyn Molineaux. Katie interned for a Colorado State Representative helping mold public perception about the legalization of marijuana and being a top contributor on multiple education bills. She is dedicated to spreading meaningful and trust-building communities around the world. She loves spending her free time with her dog and friends and is passionate about helping improve society.
Reverend Pedro Silva, M.Div., Associate Minister, First Congregational Church. Before answering the call to ministry, Pedro served eight years in the U. S. Air Force as a satellite-communications technician and intelligence analyst. In his post-military years, he worked in both for- and non-profit organizations. Here he discovered a passion for helping people respond to life’s challenges. Compelled to cultivate this passion, he enrolled at Andover Newton Theological School in Massachusetts in 2009 and in 2013 earned his Master’s in Divinity. After serving four years as student minister in Massachusetts, he came to Colorado. He is ordained through the United Church of Christ.
Linda Taylor, Episcopal Priest, Spiritual Director, and Conflict Coach. Linda's ministry focuses on helping people deepen relationships with themselves, each other and the Holy. “I am in love with this process. Living Room Conversations teach the kind of respectful civil discourse that is the bedrock of civic empowerment. Relationships are built one conversation at a time, and discovering common values builds relationships that enable us to work together to bring about positive change in our world."
Beth Raps, Development Partner, Living Room Conversations. Beth is a philosopher-organizer. She has worked for decades in grassroots social change movements connecting program and mission to Board, budget, and fund development. She is also an editor, published French translator and writer. Her research interests are arenas where expert and lay knowledges intersect. Her spiritual interests are wide and deep. She's the mother of a college-aged daughter whom she co-homeschooled for many years, and has lived for many years in Appalachia.
Sabrina Moyle is the co-founder of Hello!Lucky, a letterpress card company, and The Write_On Campaign, an initiative to foster authentic human connections through letter-writing. She serves on the Board of The Mosaic Project, which empowers children of diverse backgrounds with the skills of empathy, assertive communication and conflict resolution. Sabrina has worked as a strategy consultant at The Bridgespan Group and in state and local government. Sabrina holds in MBA and Certificate in Non-profit Management from Stanford University and a BA in Art History from Swarthmore College. She lives in San Francisco with her husband and three sons.
Pearce Godwin is founder, president and CEO of Listen First Project and founder of The Listening Coalition. Listen First Project facilitates greater understanding, respect and cooperation by encouraging the timeless but abandoned practice of listening to each other, especially to those with whom we disagree. Through The Listening Coalition, Pearce collaborates with many organizations and individual leaders committed to promoting and practicing listening to improve relationships and public discourse. Pearce studied public policy, economics and marketing at Duke University and is getting an MBA at UNC-Chapel Hill. He spent five years working in Washington, DC in the U.S. Senate and as a political consultant. Before moving home to North Carolina, Pearce spent six months in Uganda, Africa where he wrote It’s Time to Listen. That simple message has now reached millions of readers, attracted thousands of pledge signers, and launched the global Listen First movement.
Serena Witherspoon studies Sociology at UC Berkeley. Her research explores the relationship between the education and carceral systems. She is the assistant director of the Stiles Hall Experience Berkeley Transfer program. This program aims to increase the amount of Black, Latinx, and Native American students on the Berkeley campus through mentorship and community building. She works with Living Room Conversations to broaden and deepen transpartisan communications. Her interests include coffee, novels, routine and naked cats.