Friends Select’s Distinguished Guests During the 2022-23 School Year

Friends Select’s Distinguished Guests During the 2022-23 School Year
Friends Select School
Friends Select’s Distinguished Guests During the 2022-23 School Year

Full Select News
Friends Select’s Distinguished Guests During the 2022-23 School Year

Throughout the 2022-23 school year, numerous distinguished guests visited Friends Select School to share their expertise and experiences with our community. Distinguished guests included:


Graduation Speaker
Amy Cohen '82


The 1619 Project Screening and Q&A
Shoshana Guy, Showrunner and Executive Producer

Middle School Assembly
Beth Lincoln, Author, The Swifts 


Transformation Talk: Strategic Partnerships: Crafting a 21st-Century Education

  • John Chin P’83, Executive Director, Philadelphia Chinatown Development Corporation (PCDC)
  • Melissa Levy ’91, Executive Director, Philadelphia Animal Welfare Society (PAWS)
  • Gerald Lopez P’31, ’34, Director of Operations and Business Development & Center Associate Director, University of Pennsylvania Singh Center for Nanotechnology
  • Rachel Zimmerman ’85, Founding Executive Director, InLiquid

Upper School Visiting Writer-in-Residence
Stephanie Kyung Sun Walters, Playwright

Upper School Voter Registration Drive
Seth Bluestein, Philadelphia City Commissioner 

Upper School Assembly on the Legacy of Gamble + Huff
Caliph Gamble ’95, Cinematographer, Director, Editor, and Founder of Gamble Companies and the Sons of Legends Foundation

Quakerism Panel Discussion

  • Dwight Dunston, Hip-hop Artist, Activist, and Educator
  • Dyresha Harris, Director, Catoctin Quaker Camp
  • George Lakey, P’89, GP’27, Activist, Author

Middle School Assembly
Dwight Dunston, Hip-hop artist, Activist, and Educator

Upper School Engineering Course
Alanna C. Raffel, Assistive Technology Specialist, Pennsylvania Initiative on Assistive Technology 

Upper School Latin V Course
Vicki Landers, Founder & Executive Director, Disability Pride PA 


Social Justice Week
Keynote Speakers

  • Kurt Evans, Chef and Activist
  • Rodney Glasgow, Head of School, Sandy Spring Friends School
  • Zarinah Lomax, Artist, The Apologues
  • Blanca Pacheco, Co-director, New Sanctuary Movement

Asian American Experiences

  • Wei Chen, Civic Engagement Director, Asian Americans United, Co-founder of the Asian Pacific Islander Political Alliance Pennsylvania (APIPA)
  • Fariha Khan, Co-director, Asian American Studies Program, University of Pennsylvania
  • Urvashi Pathania, Writer and Director
  • Raquel Villanueva Dang and Taizu, Co-founders, Philly Solidarity

Community and Police Relations

  • Keir Bradford-Grey, Former Chief Public Defender for Philadelphia, and Current Partner at Montgomery McCracken Walker & Rhoads LLP
  • Kermit O, Community Organizer
  • Christopher Rabb, Pennsylvania House Representative

Drugs and Opioid Crisis

  • Eriach Fox, Counselor, Spilove Psychotherapy 
  • Dr. Daniel Teixeira da Silva, Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania
  • Dr. Annika Vaughn-Cooke, Psychiatrist, Jefferson University Hospital

Food Insecurity
Abbe Stern, Food Pharmacy Manager of the Healthy Weight Food Pharmacy, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia

Immigration Reform

  • Leslie Castrejon, Assistant Dean for Student Support and Belonging, Bryn Mawr College
  • Joanne Gottesman, Director of Clinical Programs, Camden and Clinical Professor of Law, Rutgers University

Indigenous Peoples’ Experiences

  • Tailinh Agoyo, Co-founder and Director, We Are the Seeds of CultureTrust and Rise & Thrive Podcast
  • Brianna D'Agostino, Speaker on Indigenous Religion

Math and Social Justice

  • Samantha Caiola, Gun Violence Prevention Reporter, WHYY
  • David Holloman, Chief of Staff, Mayor’s Office of Homeless Services  

Media’s Role in Social Justice 

Ernest Owens, Journalist and President, Philadelphia Association of Black Journalists 

Mental Health

  • Eben Hilpert, Counselor, Arrive Therapy
  • Emily Torchiana, Speaker About Mental Health and Social Media

Mixed Tracks

  • Karina Gutierrez-Noriega, Owner, Strategic Soul
  • Achola Simkins, Instructor, Uprising ACM Studios

Religious Identity and Discrimination

  • Deborah Bowen, Rabbi, Congregation Temple Beth’El 
  • Eli Freedman, Rabbi
  • Michelle Horton, Minister 
  • Aaron Rock-Singer, Assistant Professor, Department of History, University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • Cara Rock-Singer, Assistant Professor of Religious Studies, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Women in Power

  • Melissa Gerber, President and CEO, Access Matters
  • Sarah Podemski, Actor

Transformation Talk: Creating and Educating a More Sustainable Philadelphia

  • Rich Freeh, Green Building United
  • Micah Gold-Markel ’95, Solar States
  • Caroline Goodbody, Comcast Smart Solutions
  • Nidhi Krishen, Philadelphia Office of Sustainability

Wellness Program
The Anxiety Paradox: Why Helping Kids Feel Bad Can Help Them to Feel Good

Dr. Tracy Dennis-Tiwary, Psychologist, Author, and Anxiety Researcher


Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Family Experience 2023

  • Amanda McIllmurray, Democratic Candidate for City Council at-Large, 
  • Briannah Stoves, Youth Leader, Care, Not Control 
  • Jorian Rivera-Veintidos, Prevention and Education Manager, POP Program, GALAEI 
  • Ebony Ali, TINGS Program Coordinator, GALAEI

MLK Teach-in

Amplifying Voices of Indigenous People
Adam DePaul, Tribal Council Member, Lenape Nation of Pennsylvania, and  Storykeeper and Coordinator of the Rising Nation River Journey 

Apologues: Art and Advocacy
Zarinah Lomax, Artist, The Apologues

Beyond the Bell Tours: Badass Women's History of Philadelphia
Joey Leroux, Co-founder, Beyond the Bell Tours

Books Through Bars
Dr. Tom Haney, President, Books Through Bars

Connecting The Dream to Reality
Michael Butler, Reporter, Miami Herald

Continuing MLK's Legacy at North Philly Peace Park
Brother Tommy Joshua Caison, Founder and Executive Director, North Philly Peace Park 

Crown Them King: Reinterpreting a Legacy
Aaron Smith, Assistant Professor in the Department of Africology and African American Studies, Temple University 

Education Through the Lens of Social Justice
Darien Headen ’11, Associate Head of School, Greene Street Friends School

Handball in Philadelphia
Emerald Martez, Founder, Urban Eminence

Policing and Youth Violent Crime Rates
Jarreau Thomas, Inspector, Philadelphia Police Department

Storytelling for Social Change
Reva Stover, Playwright, Director, and Producer

Using Your Voice for Freedom
Marshall Mitchell, Pastor, Salem Baptist Church

We Love Philly Podcast: Using Your Story to Inspire Action

  • Carlos Aponte, Founder and Executive Director, We Love Philly 
  • Thayid Wilson, Graduate, We Love Philly 


Book Launch Party for White Fragility (Adapted for Young Adults): Why Understanding Racism Can Be So Hard for White People

  • Ali Michael, Co-founder and Co-director, Race Institute for K-12 Educators
  • Toni Graves Williamson, Director of Equity and Inclusion, Friends Select School


Concerts for Lower, Middle, and Upper School
People of Earth

Indigenous Peoples Month Assembly
Chief David “Stands with Song” Hughes, Principal Chief, Eagle Medicine Band of Cherokee Indians

Upper School History Class
Natasha Danielá de Lima McGlynn, Executive Director, Anti-Violence Partnership of Philadelphia

Upper School History, Current Events Course
Natasha McGlynn, Executive Director, Anti-Violence Partnership of Philadelphia 


Upper School Assembly
Helen Gym, Philadelphia City Councilmember at-large

Middle School Assembly
Kwame Alexander, Author

Upper School Spanish Course
Samu Cortez, Mexican-American Artist 

Upper School Spanish Course
Perla Trevizo, Pulitzer Prize-winning Journalist 


Transformation Talk: Building for the Future: How to Create Lasting Equitable and Accessible Learning Spaces

  • James Bradberry, Principal, James Bradberry Architects
  • Helen Gym, Philadelphia City Councilmember at-large
  • Nasheli J Ortiz González, Executive Director, Taller Puertorriqueño
  • Kelly Richards, President and Director, Free Library of Philadelphia