Hearts on Fire: Twelve Stories of Today's Visionaries Igniting Idealism into Action
DescriptionLeila Janah was inspired by her immigrant parents to connect the poor to online job opportunities. Susana De Anda tapped into her family's farmworker background and today brings clean water to the San Joaquin Valley. They are two of 14 inspirational visionaries featured in the book "Hearts on Fire" by Jill Iscol.
At this Milken Institute Forum, moderator Angella Nazarian - herself an author who has written about female pioneers - led a dynamic and thoughtful conversation with Iscol, De Anda and Janah about how these innovative women are turning idealism into action and changing the world in the process.
Angella Nazarian is the author of "Pioneers of the Possible," which honors 20 of the world's most daring, creative and inspiring women of the 20th and 21st centuries. Nazarian has been a professor of psychology and a faculty member at Mount Saint Mary's College and Cal State Long Beach. She now conducts workshops and seminars on personal development and growth for women and has been a keynote speaker at national events and conferences. Nazarian is a regular contributor to the Huffington Post, Maria Shriver's More.com blog and Intent.com. Her work has appeared in New Millennium Writings and MO+TH. Her first book, "Life as a Visitor," was a best-seller for publisher Assouline.
Susana De Anda is the co-founder of Community Water Center, a Visalia-based nonprofit that helps disadvantaged communities access safe and affordable drinking water. She and co-director Laurel Firestone were co-awarded the Carla Bard Advocacy Award from the Public Officials for Water and Environmental Reform in 2010. In 2009, De Anda was named a Petra Fellow, which recognizes unsung heroes making contributions to the rights and dignity of others. De Anda sits on an advisory board of the Rose Foundation and the Coordinating Council of the Southwest Network for Environmental and Economic Justice. Previously she was a community organizer with the Center on Race, Poverty and the Environment.
Jill Iscol, an educator and activist, is president of the IF Hummingbird Foundation, a family foundation established in 1989 to help strengthen democracy and reduce the social, economic, and educational inequalities that threaten it. For the past two decades, she has identified nascent visionary leaders and programs, and then fostered their advancement by providing seed capital and guidance. As a Democratic Party activist, she co-chaired the New York finance committee for Hillary Rodham Clinton's Senate campaign and was national vice chair of the finance committee for her 2008 presidential campaign. "Hearts on Fire," her first book, was released in 2011 and will soon be available as a Random House Trade Paperback.
Leila Janah is the founder and CEO of Samasource, which connects impoverished people to "microwork" - small, computer-based tasks that build skills and generate income. Before Samasource, Janah was a visiting scholar with the Stanford Program on Global Justice and Australian National University's Center for Applied Philosophy and Public Ethics. She also was a founding director of Incentives for Global Health, which aims to increase R&D spending on diseases of the poor. A frequent speaker on social entrepreneurship and technology, she has been profiled by CBS, CNN, NPR, the BBC, The New York Times and The New Scientist. Janah sits on the boards of OneLeap and TechSoup Global.