top of page

July 24, 2021   

Tina Packer Playhouse, Shakespeare & Company

70 Kemble Street, Lenox, Massachusetts

The program included live, thought-provoking talks by our featured speakers listed below.

Deval Patrick, former Governor of Massachusetts

Deval Patrick is a civil rights lawyer and advocate, a business executive and entrepreneur, and the former Governor of Massachusetts. He serves currently as a Senior Advisor to Bain Capital, co-chair of American Bridge 21st Century Foundation, and co-chair of the independent Future of Tech Commission, which is developing a policy framework for the Biden administration. His breadth of experience gives him an unusual range of insight into some of the most pressing issues facing our society today. Governor Patrick will share some deeply personal thoughts about where we are and where we ought to be going.

Becky Cushing Gop
Becky head shot informal.jpg
Matthew Dicks
Matthew Dicks 2.JPG
Dr. Dariush Mozaffarian

Time spent in nature is necessary for our health much in the same way we depend on nutritious whole foods for vitamins and minerals. Science supports what we intuitively feel – nature is good for us. When we incorporate mindful awareness of our environment into our everyday modern lives, we build a connection that supports personal wellbeing and nature for the benefit of both.

Becky Cushing Gop is Director of Mass Audubon West, a four-county region that includes 17 wildlife sanctuaries, conservation partnerships, and widespread community- and school-based programming. A trained field biologist and environmental educator, Becky’s current work focuses on cross-disciplinary project collaboration, environmental problem-solving, and connecting people to nature. 


Before her current position, Becky was Sanctuary Director for Mass Audubon’s Berkshire Wildlife Sanctuaries. In 2015, in concert with Kripalu Center for Yoga and Health, she developed Birding and Mindfulness, and has offered presentations and workshops for conservation professionals, educators and the public throughout the Northeast. 


Becky has an MS from the University of Vermont’s Field Naturalist program and a Conservation Biology degree from Middlebury College. She’s a graduate of NOLS (National Outdoor Leadership School) and SEA (Sea Education Association), a Switzer Environmental Fellow and the author of a Journal of Raptor Research article, Exploring the Role of Ospreys in Education. In 2019 she received a Berkshire 40 Under Forty award.


Recently, Becky has worked to increase access to nature for all through Opening Doors to Nature, hallmarked by a $1.2 million campaign for a new accessible and welcoming facility at Pleasant Valley Wildlife Sanctuary in Lenox.


At the heart of Becky’s work is a love and respect for the land, water and wildlife that supports us physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. 

In this talk, Matthew Dicks, an award winning and nationally recognized storyteller and internationally bestselling novelist, will review the basic elements of a great story, moving past the ridiculous "beginning, middle, and end" paradigm and into a practical, actionable explanation that can transform anyone into a better storyteller almost immediately. 

Matthew Dicks is an award-winning elementary school teacher and the internationally bestselling author of Memoirs of an Imaginary Friend, Something Missing, Unexpectedly, Milo, The Perfect Comeback of Caroline Jacobs, Twenty-one Truths About Love, and Storyworthy: Engage Teach, Persuade, and Change Your Life Through the Power of Storytelling. He’s also the humor columnist for Seasons magazine and an advice columnist with Slate magazine.  

Matthew is a 45-time Moth StorySLAM and 6-time Moth GrandSLAM champion and the founder and Artistic Director of Speak Up, a Hartford-based storytelling organization. In addition to performing, he teaches storytelling and communication strategies to corporations, nonprofits, religious institutions, universities, hospitals, public schools, advertising agencies, and many more. He has most recently worked with Yale University, MIT, the Indiana Prosecuting Attorneys Council, LEGO, and the Mohawk Nation of Canada. 

Matthew is also a wedding DJ, playwright, minister, stand-up comic, life coach, and Lord of Sealand. Matt loves ice cream cake, golf, tickling his children, staring at his wife, and not sleeping.

Dr. Mozaffarian will address the fact that we face a national nutrition crisis.  The food we eat is the leading cause of poor health, and preventable healthcare spending in the United States, and a major driver of health disparities.  It’s time for a coordinated strategy to reshape the way we incentivize, support, and drive innovation in our food system in order to leverage the full power of nutrition to improve health, advance equity, and reduce healthcare spending.


Dariush Mozaffarian is a cardiologist, Dean, and Jean Mayer Professor at the Tufts Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy, and Professor of Medicine at Tufts School of Medicine.  His work aims to create a food system that is nutritious, equitable, and sustainable.  Dr. Mozaffarian has authored more than 450 scientific publications on dietary priorities for obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular diseases, and on evidence-based policy approaches and innovations to reduce these burdens in the US and globally.  He has served in numerous advisory roles, and his work has been featured in a wide array of media outlets.  Thomson Reuters has named him as one of the World's Most Influential Scientific Minds.

Dr. Mozaffarian received a BS in biological sciences at Stanford (Phi Beta Kappa), MD at Columbia (Alpha Omega Alpha), residency training in internal medicine at Stanford, fellowship training in cardiovascular medicine at the University of Washington; an MPH from the University of Washington; and a Doctorate in Public Health from Harvard.  Before being appointed as Dean at Tufts in 2014, Dr. Mozaffarian was at Harvard Medical School and Harvard School of Public Health for a decade and clinically active in cardiology at Brigham and Women's Hospital.  He is married, has three children, and actively trains as a Third Degree Black Belt in Taekwondo.


William Green
Richer, Wiser, Happier: How the World's Greatest Investors Win in Markets and Life
Image 6-16-21 at 8_edited.jpg
Amy Ziff
Exposed: How the Things We Surround Ourselves With Daily Can Impact Our Health
Image 7-14-21 at 12.50 PM.jpg

Over the last quarter of a century, William Green has interviewed presidents and prime ministers, inventors, criminals, prize-winning authors, the CEOs of some of the world’s largest companies, and countless billionaires for The New Yorker, Time, Fortune, Forbes, Barron’s, Fast Company, Money, Worth, Bloomberg Markets, and The Economist amongst other publications.  

His most recent book Richer, Wiser, Happier: How the World’s Greatest Investors Win in Markets and Life is is based on some of his work in which he has interviewed many of the world’s best investors, exploring in-depth the question of what qualities and insights enable them to achieve enduring success.  Are there any lessons to learn from billionaire investors? If we think of them, it’s with a mixture of awe and suspicion. Clearly, they possess a kind of genius—the proverbial Midas Touch. But are the skills they possess transferable? And do they have anything to teach us besides making money?

Born and raised in London, Green was educated at Eton College, studied English literature at Oxford University, and received a Master’s degree from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism. He lives in New York with his wife, Lauren, and their children, Henry and Madeleine

Amy Ziff has created America’s first independent, 3rd party cross-category certification program for nontoxic consumer products.   With MADE SAFE, Ziff has built a robust community of people who want to use products that won’t harm themselves or their families. She has also built an ingredient database with thousands of unique ingredients and consults with companies on ingredient liabilities and product pitfalls leveraging the 360-degree Ecosystem Approach her team has pioneered. 

Amy is a proven entrepreneur and award-winning brand marketer with a MA in Journalism. She is a Certified Clean Coach and a Nontoxic Certified Ingredient Expert.  She has studied with renowned MDs and NDs. Ziff was recently named a “Woman to Watch by WELL Insiders and Made Safe was awarded “Nonprofit of the Year” at Shiftcon. She serves an advisor to EarthWatch and The Documenting Hope project. 

Jiminy Logo 2005.jpg
Ethelwynde Logo.jpg
Brava Logo.jpg
bottom of page