Expert Speakers

Our extensive network allows us to connect with expert speakers from all around the world. We believe in the power of learning first-hand from other people‘s experiences, and being able to illustrate the concepts we cover in all of our programs with examples of people whose daily work revolves around the issues of global significance that we care about.

Listed below is a sampling of experts that have worked with Envoys in the past, who could potentially join your program through webinars, Q&A sessions, workshops, live interviews and virtual tours. Our networks are wide, and, depending on the timing, Envoys is able to seek out expert speakers on a topic of your choice.

Contact us to book an expert speaker!

    Dr. Fernando Reimers

    Ford Foundation Professor of Practice in International Education at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. He studies and teaches about innovative education policies and programs that help students develop competencies necessary for civic participation, work, and life in the 21st century. He also works in the area of global citizenship education and in how to align education policies with the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations.

    Tags: international education, education policy, higher education, 21st-century skills, civics education

    Dr. Carolyn Finney

    Ph.D., Scholar-in-Residence, Environmental Affairs at Middlebury College. She is a storyteller, author, and cultural geographer. The aim of her work is to develop greater cultural competency within environmental organizations and institutions, challenge media outlets on their representation of difference, and increase awareness of how privilege shapes who gets to speak to environmental issues and determine policy and action.

    Tags: outdoor education, experiential education, race and privilege, environmental justice, environmental policy

    Sophia Kianni

    Sophia Kianni is a 19-year-old Iranian-American climate activist. She is the founder and executive director of Climate Cardinals, an international nonprofit with 8,000 volunteers in 40+ countries working to translate climate information into 100+ languages. She represents the United States as the youngest member of the inaugural UN Youth Advisory Group on Climate Change. She is also a Senior Partner at JUV Consulting and a Climate Advisor at the American Lung Association. Sophia’s work has been featured in news outlets including Forbes, CNN, TIME Magazine, NBC, and even on the front page of The Washington Post.

    Tags: youth activism, climate change, gen Z, marketing, education, international diplomacy, women leadership, management, sustainability, fashion

    Manjula Dissanayake

    Manjula is the Founder of Educate Lanka Foundation, whose mission is to empower economically disadvantaged children and youth by enhancing their access to education, mentoring, and employment opportunities in Sri Lanka. Their students are driven leaders who are committed to personal and professional advancement while creating positive changes in their communities. Manjula is a graduate of the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy and currently lives in the greater DC area.

    Tags: cross-cultural education, Sri Lanka, non-profits, educational access, education inequality, fundraising

    Christine Raine

    Christine studied at New York University, where she graduated with honors in International Relations and Psychology. She then worked in New York, El Salvador and India as a researcher, project manager and trainer. After a master’s degree in Medical Anthropology in London, and 5 years singing with her Costa Rican band Passiflora, she set out to take the leap of faith that gave birth to ConversABLE, an organization and empathy movement based in Costa Rica that has impacted over 7000 people. She has worked with governments, companies, vulnerable communities and the United Nations. Their vision is to actively co-create a world where people can authentically show themselves, and connect with each other from the heart.

    Christine’s entrepreneurial side also led her to create together with her partner Sebastián: WONDERMORE: Inner journeys, outside. A travel initiative that takes people on introspective journey to wild, exotic places. More recently, Christine went through the most important journey of her life: overcoming cancer. She has begun to share about her journey in the hopes of inspiring women to get through this challenge from a place of self-connection, growth and empowerment.

    Tags: empathy, communication, empowerment, passion, education, nonviolent communication, NVC

    Casey Lartigue

    Advocate and activist for educational freedom who has gained recognition in both South Korea and the United States. He is now based in South Korea where he is co-founder and International Director of Teach North Korean Refugees Global Education Center, along with South Korean researcher, Lee Eunkoo.

    Tags: North Korea, South Korea, ESL, non-profits, TEFL, entrepreneurship

    Liz Ricketts

    Co-founder of The OR Foundation, an organization working to expand perspectives across borders and beyond single stories, and coordinator of Dead White Man’s Clothes, a multimedia research project exploring the secondhand clothing trade in the context of Accra, Ghana.

    Tags: supply chain economics, fashion industry, secondhand clothing, Ghana, non-profits

    Maria Paula Martinez

    Executive Director of Save the Children Colombia, an organization that aims to give children a healthy start in life, the opportunity to learn and protection from harm. They ensure children’s unique needs are met and their voices are heard, delivering lasting results for millions of children, including those hardest to reach.

    Tags: healthcare, international development, Save the Children, human rights, education

    Esteban Morales Dominguez

    Economist at the Center for U.S. Studies at the University of Havana. He has issued abundant writings on Cubas race problems, including a 385 page report published in 2008 by Cubas Editorial de Ciencias Sociales, The Challenges of the Racial Problem in Cuba. Morales is a member of the main government body tasked with dealing with issues of race and identity, the UNEACs Comisión Aponte.

    Tags: Cuba, racism, identity, social sciences, Caribbean society

    Farah Cherif D‘Ouezzan

    Founder and General Director at the Center for Cross Cultural Learning, a private cultural institution founded in 1995 and directed by Moroccan academics with many years of experience in cross-cultural education. The CCCL organizes a variety of cultural and educational activities which include Arabic courses, seminars and conferences on different topics.

    Tags: Moroccan history, contemporary Morocco, women and gender, cross-cultural communication, Islamic history, Islam

    Mathias Ben Achour

    Professional Tour Guide and Founder of Visite Massalia. He has worked at the MUCEM in Marseille and at the Cartier Foundation for Contemporary Art in Paris as a cultural mediator.
    He has been in charge of designing and producing guided yours, storytelling tours and other events for all audiences. With Visit Massalia, he wishes to introduce the history and heritage of the city to Marseilles residents and tourists.

    Tags: Marseille, French history, France, French language, Mediterranean history, immigration

    Andrea Coché Mendoza

    Andrea is the Director of Monitoring and evaluation at MAIA Impact. She works to support MAIA‘s mission of empowering indigenous girls in Guatemala. By investing in girls, MAIA is creating a generation of empowered leaders who have the knowledge and resources they need to lead choice-filled lives, break cycles of poverty and ignite transformational change in their communities. Andrea is a passionate educator and a magnificent human being.

    Tags: rural education, girls empowerment, poverty, community development, Guatemala

    Tarciso Leao

    Conservation Researcher at Kew Royal Botanic Gardens, BSc in Biological Sciences at Universidade Federal de Pernambuco, Brazil. He is a plant ecologist and conservation scientist with expertise in statistical analyses and the macro-ecology of tropical plants. He has worked in partnership with environmental NGOs, governments and the private sector on projects related to forest restoration, invasive species, and floristic inventories. His current work at Kew focuses on factors affecting species’ geographic range size and extinction risk.

    Tags: environmental conservation, invasive species, Brazil, Brasil, extinction, big agriculture

    Shara Mohtadi

    Shara works for Bloomberg Philanthropies advancing the organization’s philanthropic work in support of taking action on climate change. She also served on Mike Bloomberg‘s 2020 Presidential Campaign Climate Policy team. Bloomberg Philanthropies Environment program brings together a wide range of partners, including cities, businesses, public health, and environmental advocates, and citizen groups, to address some of the most serious threats to our environment, including climate change and overfishing.

    Tags: climate policy, philanthropy, advocacy, lobbying, climate change, global warming

    Andrew Jilani

    Accomplished Educator and International Development professional with more than 12 years of experience in Sri Lanka, Indonesia, Cambodia, Pakistan, Hungary, Armenia, Kosovo, Paraguay, El Salvador and with Afghan refugees, Trained Peace Corps volunteers, taught in the US and overseas incorporating student-centered and experiential learning. Fluent in Urdu, Punjabi & English; Spanish (advanced) and basic in Khmer, German & Tamil and has worked among different ethnic and religious groups. Enjoys practicing yoga, learning new languages, and uses relevant online platforms when teaching and training.
    Tags: International Human Rights, Religions in Asia, Culture of Cambodia, Poverty in Asia

    Dustin Liu

    Dustin (he/his) is currently serving as the 9th US Youth Observer to the United Nations. Through this role, he works actively to connect young people to global issues and believes that the global issues we are facing require every individual to play a role in the systematic change our world needs. He is interested in dialogue as a tool for social change and the potential to build educational pathways and experiences that allow humans to flourish. In his free time, Dustin is a certified Zumba instructor and loves to share his love for playing the cello in community with others.

    Tags: global education, intergroup dialogue, virtual facilitation, higher education, social innovation

    Elizabeth Collins

    Elizabeth M. Collins is currently a Lecturer in French & Francophone Studies at the University of Pennsylvania. She graduated from UCLA with a Ph.D. in French & Francophone Studies in 2020 and holds a B.A. in French from Hamilton College. Her research explores colonialism, race, migration, and culture in relation to the legacy of France’s empire in Asia, with a focus on the Vietnamese diaspora in the francophone world.
    Tags: Modern and Contemporary French and Francophone Literature, Vietnamese Diaspora, Contemporary France, Anti-Racism, Food Studies, French Empire, Colonialism and Post-colonialism, Postcolonial Literature, Gender Studies, Visual Culture

    Mitchell Alva

    Mitchell has worked as a producer on This Week with George Stephanopolous for the last three years, where his role includes selecting which topics the show will cover on a given week, and engaging experts and White House officials for interviews on the show. Prior to that, he worked in the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor (DRL) administering grant programs that promote international labor rights, including freedom of association and access to Decent Work, across the MENA region, South and Central Asia, and Eastern Europe. Mitchell coordinated funding strategy, program implementation, and responses to global developments with stakeholders in the State Department, interagency community, Congress, civil society, foreign governments, and multilateral organizations.

    Tags: politics, media, human rights, international labor rights

    Brandon Williams

    Brandon earned his history PhD in May 2020 from the University of California, Berkeley in Cold War national security, development, and postcolonial history. His dissertation included research and language training in Indonesia, India, Switzerland, and the throughout the United States. Professionally, he works on cybersecurity, emerging technology, and national security policy.

    Tags: international diplomacy, economic development, national security, cybersecurity, globalization, global history, American history, Southeast Asia, Asian history, great power competition

    Rayneir Romero

    Ray is a historian and educator living in Trinidad, Cuba. He is the foremost expert on the San Isidro de los Destiladeros sugar mill which was founded and operated as a slave plantation for several centuries. Ray takes students through a virtual tour of the plantation, helping them see the place through the eyes of the enslaved Africans who were imprisoned there. Students benefit from Ray’s expertise as they tie together multiple elements: the geography of the Caribbean, the history of sugar production and its ties to slavery, and the importance of the island of Cuba during colonial times and today.

    Tags: Cuba, Caribbean history, sugar plantations, slave plantations, Cuban culture

    Casey Peterson

    Casey Peterson is Acting Deputy Director of Resiliency Planning & Acquisitions at the NYC Department of Housing Preservation & Development, the city department responsible for developing and maintaining the New York City’s affordable housing stock. At HPD, Casey manages the Build It Back Acquisition & Buyout Program, a Hurricane Sandy recovery initiative. She has a Masters in Urban Planning from the Harvard Graduate School of Design and a Bachelor of Arts from Middlebury College.

    Tags: urban planning, resiliency, affordable housing, storm recovery, climate change adaptation

    Armando Guio Español

    Armando Guio Español is a lawyer and graduated from Universidad de Los Andes (Bogota, Colombia) in 2014 with an Honours Degree. He holds a Masters of Law from Harvard Law School and a Master of Public Policy from Oxford University. He has advised public and private entities around the world on data protection, AI policy, and innovation matters. He lead the design and implementation of Colombia’s AI Strategy and continues to advise international organizations on these topics in Latin-America. Currently, he serves as a consultant for the Development Bank of Latin-America. He is interested in emerging technologies and the ethical and regulatory challenges that come with them. He thinks that the regulation of these innovations will be one of the most important discussions of our generation and would be essential for the future of developing countries.

    Tags: law, Internet, technology, Artificial Intelligence, policy and regulation

    Miguel Rueda Saenz, Ph.D.

    Miguel is a scholar and therapist who focuses on gender diversity and sexual orientation diversity. He holds a Ph.D. in Psychology from the University of the Andes and opened his own psychotherapy practice, Pink Consultores, in 2012. He has worked as a consultant for private companies as well as public entities in Colombia. He is also a University professor and has experience speaking to diverse audiences about LGBTQ+ rights, gender identity, and sexual orientation.

    Tags: psychology, LGBTQ+, gender, sexuality, Colombia

    Sam Mihara

    Sam Mihara is a second-generation Japanese American. His parents were born in Japan and immigrated to the U.S. in the 1920s. Sam was born in the early 1930s and raised in San Francisco. When World War II broke out, the US government forced Sam and his family to move, first to a detention camp in Pomona, CA, and then to a remote prison camp in Northern Wyoming, where they stayed for three years. The camp was one of 10 in the United States. Together the camps housed a total of 120,000 West Coast residents of Japanese ancestry, most of them U.S.-born American citizens. Sam’s family lived in a single room, measuring 20 feet by 20 feet, for their entire imprisonment. He developed the Memories of Heart Mountain presentation to educate people and help ensure such civil rights violations don’t happen again. In it, he tells the story of his family and what happened to them, why the camps were created and the important lessons that were learned from this experience. Sam has also told his story at numerous schools, colleges and Department of Justice offices. In 2018, Sam received the Paul A. Gagnon Prize from the National Council for History Education.

    Tags: Internment Camps, WWII, US History, Reparations, Civil Liberties, Asian American Experiences, Social Justice

    Trey Carlisle

    Trey Carlisle is an artivist (artist + activist) passionate about advancing peace and social justice through music, dance, filmmaking, and storytelling. A 2020 Fulbright Award recipient and graduate from Soka University of America, Trey has spent the past decade creating films, writing songs, teaching Hip-Hop dance styles, and facilitating workshops in the U.S. and in China that build bridges between diverse communities and foster truth and reconciliation and anti-racism among participants.

    Tags: music and peacebuilding, anti-racism, Black/African-American History, dance and social justice, cross-cultural communication, Hip Hop dance, street dance, peacebuilding

    Stephen Ritz

    Stephen Ritz is an internationally acclaimed, award-winning educator, author of best-selling book, The Power Of A Plant and Founder of Green Bronx Machine. Known as America’s favorite teacher, Stephen is responsible for creating the first edible classroom in the world. He and his students have grown more than 100,000 pounds of vegetables in the South Bronx, have been celebrated at the Obama White House three times, have been featured on the cover of TIME for KIDS and are the subject of a new, full-feature documentary, Generation Growth. Stephen was just awarded the 2020 Change-Maker Award by NYC Food Policy Center for his work, advocacy and impact in public schools across NYC and America.

    Tags: education, food justice, social justice

    AY Young

    AY Young is a producer, singer, songwriter, entertainer, and entrepreneur. He first began writing poetry at 14, a reaction to the great disparity in Kansas City known as “the Troost divide” .While touring the USA, AY learned that over 1 billion people globally lack access to electricity. AY began powering concerts using renewable energy, raising awareness about sustainability, and fundraising to bring people electricity. Thus, the Battery Tour was born and has plugged in 17 countries to date. AY Musik’s Battery Tour is a fresh, imaginative approach uniting musical experience, community development, sustainability education, humanitarian aid, and international cooperation. These innovative, interactive engagements revolutionize musical performance by introducing audience-artist collaborative solutions to address the global energy poverty issue, minimizing carbon footprints by powering events with renewable energy. AY landed on The X Factor TV show in 2012 and received four YES’. Inspired, AY hit the streets performing his original music, garnering a grassroots following, and opening for artists like Wiz Khalifa, SHAGGY, T-Pain, Flo-rida, and Aaron Carter. He has been named a Young Leader for the SDGs by the United Nations.

    Tags: sustainability, activism, renewable energy, social justice