Keynote Speakers

Christina Meredith

Abuse and Homelessness Survivor, Youth Advocate, and Author of CinderGirl

Tuesday, Oct. 5, at 1:00 p.m. | CinderGirl: My Journey Out of the Ashes to a Life of Hope

Christina Meredith survived sexual, mental, and emotional abuse, incest, trauma, aging out of foster care, poverty, and homelessness to forge a life committed to helping others. Through strong faith, hard work, and creativity she went on to become Miss California, graduate college, founded her own nonprofit foundation and turned her enlistment into a commissioned officer in the U.S. Army. As told in her best-selling book, “CinderGirl: My Journey Out of the Ashes to a Life of Hope” (now under development to become a major motion picture), Christina’s story celebrates the transformative power of dreams and the potential within all of us to triumph over adversity.

Graduating from high school with nowhere to turn, Christina spent more than a year homeless and living in her car after aging out of foster care. Eager for a fresh start, Christina moved out to California where she took a series of odd jobs, eventually catching the eye of a pageant recruiter who suggested she compete in the Miss California pageant. In April of 2013, Christina won the title of Ms. California and has since dedicated herself to speaking out on behalf of abused children all over the country.

“My entire story is about hope, faith, hard work, achieving the dream and the purpose that you have been given in this life, and not allowing things to deter you, because circumstances change,” she says. “With hard work and a little faith, you can make them change.”

Logan Taylor

Founder and CEO, Y.B.Normal?

Thursday, Oct. 7, at 10:00 a.m. | Finding Your Inner Voice When Life Happens

What is your why? What is your purpose? These are questions asked by Logan Taylor to ensure his audiences are maximizing their full potential. Taylor, founder of Y.B.Normal?, has spoken to thousands of people worldwide. Y.B.Normal? is the vehicle that allows him to serve in various capacities. He currently mentors struggling youth in schools, implements curriculum and journal writing that focuses on social emotional development, and leads community projects. Before the pandemic, Taylor headed several community outreach events. One that he is particularly proud of is called “Cut the Hate and Share the Love.” This annual outreach initiative is geared toward providing haircuts, clothing, and shoes, and hot meals to the homeless community and people less fortunate. Taylor has a heart for people who have a difficult time overcoming poverty. He himself is a product of low-income life, welfare, and homelessness. His grandmother raised him, his father was absent, and his mother’s involvement was inconsistent most of his life. Many wonder what keeps Taylor motivated and focused — it is the love, support, and motivation he receives from his three kids, extended family, and the local community.

Leaving an environment better than the way he found it is his goal. Currently, Taylor is working toward his bachelor’s degree in social work and plans to pursue a master’s degree as a therapist.

Dr. Martin Luther King said, “Everybody can be great because anybody can serve and I am honored to be able to do my part.” Logan Taylor’s life mantra is “Y.B.Normal? when you can be extraordinary.”

Bonita Allen

David Baird

Sneha Barve

Joel Baum

Matthew Butensky

Storm Y. Camara

Kenneth Chancey

Lees M. Chevere

Kristal Moore Clemons

Stephanie Colvin-Roy

Leigh Dalton

Melissa DeMotta

Amanda Dorris

Tracy Duarte

Barbara Duffield

Leanne Eckenrode

Christina Endres

Shirley Fan-Chan

Bellis Furlin

Brandi Gilbert

Missy Gosnell

Jodi Grant

Tiara Greene

Lindsay Gregg

Amanda Guzman

Jamerika Haynes-Lewis

Amira Hill-Yancy

Kristen Hoffa

Elizabeth Hoffer

Alyssa H. Holstay

Serena Holthe

Constance Iannetta

Patricia Julianelle

Christina Kapp

Maria Kelley

Wendy Kinnear

Jani Koester

Rijelle Kraft

Alison Kreitzer

Cindy LaCom

Joy Lenzi

Alex Maasdam

Susan L. Mangold

Leslie McConnell

Kathleen McNaught

Colin McShane

Carmen M. Medina

Mirielle Milne

Nadia Mozaffar

Samantha Murphy

Katherine Noss

Rebecca O’Shea

Erin Patterson

Emily Peeler

Shaquite Pegues

Carla Peña

Tatiana Piper

Sonia Pitzi

Kelly Protho

Samantha Pudloski

Al Quarles

Julie Ratekin

Erin Reed

Lisette Rivera

Jim Ross

Anne Salerno

Nancy Scherlong

Jillian Schreib

Maria Searcy

Rajni Shankar-Brown

Kelly-Jo Shebeck

Andrea Sheesley

Tia-Maria Smith

Ludy Soderman

Nicole Steward

Jackie Strohm

Danyah Subei

Ashley Varrato

Jorge Verlenden

Sarah Wasch

Joe Willard

Jeff Zimmerman