Joyful Clemantine is a social entrepreneur, connector, an internationally renowned speaker, and a New York Times Bestselling Author. Her memoir THE GIRL WHO SMILED BEADS debuted with Crown Publishing in April 2018, and since has been published in seven languages. Joyful is currently the founder of 10Houses, a private network dedicated to cultivating entrepreneurship and equity, and a co-founder and connector of THINGY, an online platform whose mission is to capture, organize, and share creative ways of being to foster belonging.
Joyful lives to connect communities and transform individualistic perspectives into balanced structures of exchange and interaction. She catalyzes development personally, locally, and globally by centering the mind, body and spirit as a site for personal and communal growth.
Joyful provides practical, emotional and mental strategies to rewire habits and make decisions that serve equity in self, the home, the community and the workplace.
Informed by her personal experiences growing up in nine different countries, mostly in war torn regions across central and east Africa, Joyful emboldens communities to bring awareness to divisive labels and ideology embedded in oppressive identities based on class, race, and gender. She invites everyone to bring awareness and action back to self: Who are we without words? Who are we without labels?
Joyful received her BA in Comparative Literature from Yale University with a focus in African and Women’s Studies in 2014.
Dr. Tererai Trent is one of today’s most internationally recognized voices for quality education and women’s empowerment. Distinguished as Oprah Winfrey’s “All-Time Favorite Guest,” Dr. Trent is a scholar, humanitarian, motivational speaker, educator, author, and the founder of Tererai Trent International, which aims to provide quality education in rural Africa.
Rooted in humble beginnings, Dr. Trent grew up in a cattle-herding family in rural Zimbabwe. Despite facing many obstacles, she never lost sight of her dreams for an education. Dr. Trent could not have imagined that her steadfast determination, hard work and belief in her dreams would eventually earn her a prominent global platform with world leaders and international audiences where she leads the global charge in the fight for quality education and women’s rights. Dr. Trent has been a two-time keynote speaker at the UN Global Compact Leaders Summit where she used her growing voice to appeal to international businesses to invest in equal access to quality education. She is currently an adjunct professor in Monitoring & Evaluation in Global Health at Drexel University, School of Public Health.
Her new book, The Awakened Woman: Remembering & Reigniting Our Sacred Dream, published in 2017, has a foreword by Oprah Winfrey and was the Winner of a 2017 NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literary Work. Her picture book, The Girl Who Buried Her Dreams in a Can, is based on her story of perseverance, and encourages children to explore their imagination and dream big. Dr. Trent has become a symbol of hope for everyone, and living proof that anything is possible. Her favorite motto is “Tinogona,” meaning, “It is achievable!”
2011 Nobel Peace Laureate Leymah Gbowee is a Liberian peace activist, trained social worker and women’s rights advocate.
She currently serves as Executive Director of the Women, Peace and Security Program at the Earth Institute at Columbia University and is the founder and current President of the Gbowee Peace Foundation Africa, the founding head of the Liberia Reconciliation Initiative, as well as co-founder and former Executive Director of Women Peace and Security Network Africa (WIPSEN-A). She is also a founding member and former Liberian Coordinator of Women in Peacebuilding Network/West Africa Network for Peacebuilding (WIPNET/WANEP). She travels internationally to advocate for human rights and peace & security.
Ms. Gbowee’s leadership of the Women of Liberia Mass Action for Peace – which brought together Christian and Muslim women in a nonviolent movement that played a pivotal role in ending Liberia’s civil war in 2003 – is chronicled in her memoir, Mighty Be Our Powers, and in the award-winning documentary, Pray the Devil Back to Hell. Ms. Gbowee holds an M.A. in Conflict Transformation from Eastern Mennonite University (Harrisonburg, VA), and a Doctor of Laws (LLD) honoris causa from Rhodes University in South Africa and the University of Alberta in Canada.
Ms. Gbowee advises numerous organizations working for peace, women’s rights, youth, and sustainable development, and has held distinguished fellowships at Barnard College and Union Theological Seminary. In 2016, Ms. Gbowee was awarded the Lifetime Africa Achievement Prize (LAAP) for Peace in Africa by the Millennium Excellence Foundation. Ms. Gbowee serves as a Sustainable Development Goals Advocate for the United Nations and as a Member of the World Refugee Council. In 2017, Ms. Gbowee was selected by the United Nations Secretary General to serve as a Member of United Nations Secretary-General’s High Level Advisory Board on Mediation. In 2018, she was appointed to the Gender Equality Advisory Council Secretariat for Canada’s G7 Presidency.
Leymah is the proud mother of eight children.