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2018 Speakers

Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal

Member of the U.S. House of Representatives for the 115th Congress
Representing Washington’s 7th district

Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal is the first Indian-American woman in the House of Representatives. She is committed to ensuring that every resident of the district has economic opportunity; fairness and equity; and safe and healthy communities. She is proud of the district’s role in leading the country on issues like the minimum wage, racial equity and innovation, and will work to support that work and lift it up as a model for the rest of the country. Her focus is on ensuring income equality; access to education; expanding Social Security and Medicare; protecting our environment for our next generation; and ensuring immigrant, civil and human rights for all.


Nancy Pelosi

Democratic Leader of the U.S. House of Representatives for the 115th Congress

Shattering the marble ceiling and making her the highest-ranking female politician in American history, Leader Pelosi is the first woman to serve as the Speaker of the House from 2007 to 2011. She has led House Democrats for more than 12 years and has represented San Francisco, California’s 12th District, for 30 years. In 2013, she was inducted into the National Women’s Hall of Fame.

From fighting for human rights to A Better Deal that brings about better jobs, better wages and a better future, she has been hailed as a champion for working families. Pelosi secured passage for the $787 billion Recovery Act in 2009 that has saved and/or created millions of jobs while spearheading the landmark Affordable Care Act in 2010. She made headlines in February 2018 after smashing a 109-year old record for her 8 hour speech in support of our courageous DREAMers that she continues fighting for every day.

Leader Pelosi’s record stretches back decades, from stopping George W. Bush’s attempted privatization of Social Security to opposing “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”. A proud grandmother of nine, she has been called the “strongest and most effective speaker of modern times” for leading “one of the most productive Congresses in history.”


Jamie Margolin

Student Activist and Zero Hour Organizer

Sixteen-year-old Jamie Margolin is wasting no time fighting for her generation’s right to inherit a livable future—she is not afraid to stand up for what she believes in, be it climate denial, the end of gun violence, or racism. And she is not alone—earlier this year, the savvy high school sophomore and 12 other youth submitted a lawsuit against the State of Washington and its governor for insufficient action on climate change. Now, Margolin is organizing a nationwide climate march called Zero Hour—on July 21st, youth across the country will join together to confront lawmakers in Washington, D.C. with a list of their demands for a livable climate.


Dr. Marco Hatch

Assistant Professor of Environmental Science,
Huxley College of the Environment, Western Washington University

Dr. Marco Hatch is a marine ecologist with a Ph.D. in Biological Oceanography from Scripps Institution of Oceanography and a member of the Samish Indian Nation. Prior to teaching at Western Washington University, Hatch directed the Salish Sea Research at Northwest Indian College.

Hatch has created a wonderfully diverse lab at WWU charged with preparing the next generation of environmental scientists and leaders through fostering respect for Indigenous knowledge and providing students with a solid background in scientific methods. His research focuses on the nexus of people and marine ecology, centered on Indigenous marine management.


Geneva Betnel and Megan O’Reilly

Straw Collection Activists

Geneva Betnel (a Kindergartener in Shoreline, WA) learned about the problem of plastic straws when her older brother started studying plastic pollution in the ocean. Living near Puget Sound and the Pacific Ocean, she could feel the impact of this very close to her home. She and her family made a commitment to not use plastic straws as a New Year’s Resolution for 2017 and began seeing how often plastic straws were offered and used around her every day. Some of Geneva’s friends, including Megan O’Reilly (age 8), petitioned their city council in Redmond, WA to ban plastic straws and she decided to do the same in Shoreline. Based on Geneva’s letter, the city council considered the ban but decided not to go ahead with it just yet. To encourage them to pay more attention to the issue, on April 2nd she went to their weekly council meeting to challenge the council members to personally give up using plastic straws for the month of April. To make an even bigger change…SHE WANTS EVERYONE TO JOIN IN. This challenge is her idea and a way she hopes will make a big change.


Adriana L. Germano

Third-Year Ph.D. Student in Social Psychology, University of Washington

Adriana is a third-year Ph.D. student in Social Psychology at the University of Washington. A major aim of her research is to reduce social group inequality using data-driven psychological interventions. Her research takes her both into the lab and the field. She has developed interventions to increase the inclusion of women in STEM and investigated the effectiveness of popular diversity initiatives used by schools and organizations. Growing up, Adriana never imagined herself as a scientist. She hopes that her research will encourage young students with non-traditional and underrepresented backgrounds to see that they too can have careers in science.


Timothy (TJ) Greene

Board Member for The Nature Conservancy
Former Makah Tribal Council Chair and Chief of Police

TJ Greene formerly served as chair for the Makah Tribal Council of Neah Bay and currently is as a member of the Board of Trustees for The Nature Conservancy in Washington, where he provides input and guidance related to strategic issues, goal setting, and critical thinking.

Initially following in his family’s footsteps as a commercial fisherman, Greene went on to complete Evergreen State College’s Tribal Government program and earn his bachelor’s degree from Western Washington’s University Business and Economics program. Greene’s educational background, combined with his work experience in many areas such as fisheries, planning, realty, youth, and social services, made him uniquely suited for tribal leadership. Later, Greene served his tribe as the chief of police after graduating from the Bureau of Indian Affairs Policy Academy and Criminal Investigator Academy.

Greene’s background, knowledge, and experience have provided him with a strong understanding of how critical it is, when looking for solutions to the environmental dilemmas that confront us, to embrace, respect, and apply the the deep and long-standing relationships that indigenous peoples have with the environment.


Nick Montoni

Founder of oSTEM at the University of Washington
Fourth-year Ph.D. , UW

Nick Montoni is a fourth-year Ph. D. student in the department of Chemistry at the University of Washington and the founder of oSTEM at UW. Besides researching theoretical descriptions of light-matter interactions at the nanometer scale and photonic materials, Nick is an advocate for underrepresented students in STEM, a passionate science outreach coordinator, and an aspiring science policy advisor. Outside of science, Nick enjoys long-distance running, Dungeons and Dragons, and Seattle art walks.


Cheri Cornell, J.D.

Executive Director, Washington Women for Climate Action Now

As Executive Director for the non-profit Washington Women for Climate Action Now (WWCAN), Cheri Cornell is committed to implementing diversity, equity, inclusion for women in Washington State. Cornell has worked as a legislative aide to Senator Daniel J. Evans, and has been steeped in political and public interest campaigns ever since. As a law student, she concentrated on environmental and resource management, writing a law review article on hydropower dams and the Clean Water Act. As a lawyer, Cornell litigated large Superfund cases. As a mom, she strongly believes that introducing sustainability at home and in our communities is the surest way to make our kids into good environmental stewards.