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Matthew Badger founded LilySarahGraceFund.org in the spring of 2012. The mission of LSGF is to challenge and empower any teacher in a poverty level public elementary school to infuse the arts into curricula. The fund was created as a reply to the Christmas morning house fire that took the lives of Matthew's three daughters in Stamford, CT in 2011. The fund is nationwide and has supplied materials to over 100,000 students. This academic year the fund is promoting a method of teaching called Arts Infused Inquiry Based Learning.

Lily 9, Grace 7, Sarah 7, and Matthew all shared the learning challenges of dyslexia. Matthew views the arts as essential to his way of thinking. He believes this is true for millions of children across America. Matthew see’s the stripping of public school budgets as a violation of these children’s right to a fair and appropriate education.

Matthew Badger has enjoyed 18 years as a commercial director and works with the production company Epoch Films.

Liberal Arts Degree @the New School of New York City, 1990.

Matthew Dicks is the author of the novels Memoirs of an Imaginary Friend, Something Missing and Unexpectedly, Milo and the rock opera The Clowns. When he is not hunched over a computer screen, he fills his days as an elementary school teacher, a wedding DJ, a minister, a life coach and a Lord of Sealand. He is a former West Hartford Teacher of the Year and an nine-time Moth StorySLAM champion whose stories have been featured on the Moth Radio Hour and their weekly podcast. Matthew is married to friend and fellow teacher, Elysha, and they have two children, Clara and Charlie. Matthew grew up in the small town of Blackstone, Massachusetts, where he made a name for himself by dying twice before the age of eighteen and becoming the first student in his high school to be suspended for inciting riot upon himself.

Mike French: An Atheist’s Guide to Compassion

Western Connecticut State University B.A. in Political Philosophy

Michael is a senior at Western Connecticut State University majoring in Political Philosophy. His interests mostly lie in political and moral philosophy, death, free will, time and the writings of Sartre, Camus, Harris, and Nietzsche. He also plays rugby for WCSU. Michael plans on continuing his education through graduate school to earn a doctorate in philosophy. After this, he will teach at the university level and become an author to spread the love of thinking and pursuit of knowledge. 

Daniel E. Martin

Daniel E. Martin is an Associate Professor of Management at California State University, East Bay and a Visiting Associate Professor at CCARE, Stanford University. Formerly a Visiting Scholar at the Center for the Study of Law & Society at UC Berkeley, a Research Fellow for the U.S. Army Research Institute as well as a Personnel Research Psychologist for the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, he has worked with private, public and nonprofit organizations on pre-employment selection, training, and organizational assessment. His research interests include: social capital, ethical behavior, racism and prejudice, human resources assessment, religiosity, spirituality and humor.

Dan is published in a range of journals including Personnel Review, Human Organization, Ethics and Behavior, and the Journal of Applied Psychology. His current research streams investigate the impact of individual differences and ideology on social corporate responsibility and human resources decision making. Other streams involve the impact of ideology on compassion and psychological well-being. His current applied work on the use of untapped social capital to ameliorate social problems serve as a research, skills development and assessment platform. Dan holds a Ph.D. in Social Psychology from Howard University.

Dan is published in various professional journals including Personnel Review, Human Organization, Ethics and Behavior, Equal Opportunities International, Management Research Review, Intelligence, Military Psychology, Business Education Forum, Skeptic Magazine and the Journal of Applied Psychology and is a professional member of the Academy of Management and the Association for Psychological Science.

Hasib Muhammad is junior at North Gwinnett High School in Suwanee, Georgia, Hasib is a cogent voice in the youth leadership and entrepreneurship sector. From a very young age, he found his passion in empowering young people to do big things. He is the Program Director of Greening Forward, the fastest-growing and largest youth-staffed environmental nonprofit organization in the world. He serves on the Jane Goodall Institute's Roots & Shoots National Youth Leadership Council and the National Youth Advisory Council for Keep America Beautiful, the largest community improvement organization of the United States.

When not studying for his AP courses or helping around in his community, you can find Hasib traveling the United States, speaking at various conferences about the importance of global youth engagement. He has spoken from Microsoft in Washington to the United Nations in New York City. In his spare time, he enjoys reading, writing, and playing Pokemon.

Dale Osterman: Around a Flame, Original Composition

A Music and Audio Production Major at Western Connecticut State University, Dale studies cello with Richard Vaudrey and Audio Production with Dr. Douglas O’Grady. He began his journey as a musician at the age of nine when he picked the cello as his starting instrument in elementary school. As a cellist, Dale has played with regional and local orchestras throughout his high school career and continues to be seen in pit, orchestral, and occasional solo performances as a college-level player. Beyond the realm of the cello, he has studied guitar, voice, and bass guitar, and has performed as a solo act as well as a front man for an acoustic band, with both original works and cover songs. Dale hopes to continue his work as a musician and plans on one day attending graduate school for composition.