Ahead of our annual education storytelling event on Wednesday, we wanted to give you a sneak peek of the program audience members will see at Town Hall on Feb. 8.

Share story

This is it, folks. Eleven storytellers are bringing their pithy talks to you on the Town Hall stage as part of Ignite Education Lab. Since our earlier speaker announcement post was brief, we thought we’d provide you with more information about our presenters so you’re prepped for the event this evening. And if you haven’t yet signed up to come, buy your ticket today.

The 2017 Ignite Education Lab speakers, in alphabetical order, are:

Alex Alviar
“Boardgames, or the Furtive Art of Education”
Alviar is the proud parent of three children who have been raised on a steady diet of board games that stretch their imaginations, character and academic disciplines. He is an accomplished marketing director, healthcare strategist and Stanford graduate who is routinely beaten in Dominion by his 7-year-old. He lives in Seattle and shares his home with a few humans and over 50 games.




Omari Amili, @FrelimoA
“The Transformative Nature of Post-Secondary Education”
Amili is a recent graduate of the University of Washington-Tacoma’s Master of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies program. He did his research on preventing recidivism through post-secondary education. Amili created a workshop to help formerly incarcerated people transition from being prisoners to successful college students. His career goal is to help people with a history of incarceration overcome barriers and become productive members of society. In addition, he wants to teach at the community college level and become a published author.

Nicholas Bradford, @RJFacilitator
“The Pros of Con-flict”
Bradford founded the National Center for Restorative Justice after graduating from the University of Washington with a master’s degree in education policy. Bradford is a leader in the educational movement supporting schools across Washington that are starting to use restorative justice. His vision is a community where families, schools, and the juvenile justice system leverage conflict to strengthen relationships.

Ted Cohn, @TedTheTeacher
“The Privilege of Teaching”
Cohn is from Seattle, and currently lives in Shelton. He taught freshman and AP English for 13 years at Lakes High School in Lakewood. He earned his National Board certification in 2012. During his time at Lakes, he mentored new teachers, served as English department chair, Freshman Academy leader, and started an after-school guitar program. This year, he transferred to Olympic Middle School in Shelton in order to impact his community and prepare students for the challenges of high school.

Jody McVittie, @SoundDiscipline
“Rethinking School Discipline: Shifting the Paradigm”
Dr. McVittie is a family physician and experienced professional-development facilitator with an emphasis on trauma-informed practices. She is the co-founder and director of program for Sound Discipline, a non-profit that works with schools, educators, youth outreach programs and parenting educators. She is also the mother of three young adults who have been some of her best teachers.

Domonique Meeks, @domoniquemeeks (our readers’ choice speaker!)
“The Southend: Seattle’s STEM Desert”
Meeks is co-creator of a small media team called Ambassador Stories. Its mission is to use media to highlight the people, places and spaces that bring soul to our beloved communities. He was born in Tokyo, raised in Kent and has been a resident of Seattle for the past six years.

Shalini Miskelly
“I’m a teacher of color, and I’m burning out”
Miskelly is a first-year teacher at Seattle World School, a public school dedicated to educating immigrants and refugees. She is doing her best not to burn out. She spent 10 years as a librarian before switching to teaching. She lives in Seattle with her family.

Teresa Scribner, @CHS_Scribs
“Black Hair Matters”
Scribner is an award-winning media teacher at Cleveland High School in Seattle. She teaches multimedia studies and is the adviser for Cleveland Publications. In 2016, Scribner was named Washington state’s Journalism Adviser of the Year and a Dow Jones News Fund Special Recognition Adviser. She was one of 13 journalism teachers from around the country to receive the Journalism Education Association’s Rising Star Award. Before becoming a teacher, Scribner worked as a visual journalist for The Seattle Times. Scribner is originally from England, Arkansas. Her hair changes weekly.


Jordan Taitingfong, @see_jo_teach
“Inclusion for All — Equity and Advocacy through Special Education”
Taitingfong is an educator at the Experimental Education Unit at the University of Washington. She has worked in early childhood education for the past 14 years and earned her master’s degree in special education from the University of Washington. As a lifelong learner, she is committed to working with others to build more equitable educational systems. She now teaches in an inclusive kindergarten and supports current and future educators.

Lyon Terry, @lyonterry
“Redefining Successful Schools and Students: A Field Day Story”
Lyon Terry is honored to teach fourth grade at Lawton Elementary School in Seattle. This is his 20th year teaching. He started his career in the Highline School District, taught in Brooklyn, N.Y., for five years, and then moved back to Seattle — his adopted home town. He is a National Board Certified Teacher who plays guitar and sings with his students every day. His two children went to Lawton and are now in the sixth and eighth grades. Lyon is the 2015 Washington State Teacher of the Year.

Rachel Wiley, @wildnfreewiley
“From Bad Kid to Badass Teacher”
Wiley is a teacher, writer, reader, and advocate for teachers and students in Washington. She is a secondary English teacher in the Puyallap School District, a Washington State Teacher Leader, a Class 7 Jane’s Fellow, and a member of Teachers United. She has published pieces through her personal blog, the blog for The Center for Strengthening the Teaching Profession, the Teachers United blog, and the Washington Post. She is also a National Board candidate.

Emcee: Mozart Guerrier, @mgspeaks
Guerrier is an author, public speaker and executive director at 21 Progress, a nonprofit focused on empowering young leaders and advancing economic and social justice.  He was one of the presenters at Ignite Education Lab last year, and has spoken at TEDx events and the Seattle Mayor’s Youth Opportunity Summit.

Special thanks to Carly Slater, our Ignite Seattle coach, who’s helped our speakers through the process of writing and rehearsing their talks. You rock, Carly! A little more info about her:

Carly Slater, @carlyslater
Slater is an entrepreneur, event producer, community director, executive coach, and public speaker. She is currently forming a mobile startup, raising an amazing 10-year-old kid, and learning how to raise one eyebrow.