Jack Canfield Jack Canfield author. speaker. motivator.

Affectionately known as "America's #1 Success Coach," Jack Canfield is the originator of the Chicken Soup for the Soul series and a leading authority in the areas of self-esteem, achievement motivation, and peak performance. [www.jackcanfield.com]

 
Arianna Huffington Arianna Huffington political powerhouse. media mogul. author.

Arianna Huffington is the co-founder and Editor in Chief of the Huffington Post and the author of twelve books. [www.huffingtonpost.com]

 
Seth Godin Seth Godin author. speaker. linchpin.

Seth Godin is a prominent author, blogger and speaker. [www.squidoo.com/linchpin]

 
Krishna Kaur Krishna Kaur yogi. philanthropist. dynamic teacher.

Krishna Kaur is the founder of YOGA for Youth, a program that takes yoga, meditation, and stimulating discussions on the philosophy of yoga to urban youth. [www.yogaforyouth.org]

 
Norman Lear Norman Lear producer. philanthropist. tv legend.

Norman Lear has enjoyed a long career in television and film. He is also a political and social activist and philanthropist. [www.normanlear.com]

 
Leilani Münter Leilani Münter race car driver. activist. carbon free girl.

Leilani Münter is a professional race car driver and an environmental activist who uses her voice in the number one spectator sport in America as a catalyst for change. [www.leilanimunter.com]

 
Kevin Bales Kevin Bales Freedom Fighter. Philanthropist. Game Changer.

By going undercover to meet slaves and slaveholders, Kevin Bales exposed modern slavery's penetration into the global economy. He co-founded Free the Slaves, which has helped to liberate thousands of slaves. [www.freetheslaves.net]

 
Sophie Chiche Sophie Chiche mom. big dreamer. lady in red.

Sophie Chiche, lifebyme.com founder and curator, enjoys asking deep questions and living a life of meaning. Today she's launching Shape House, an urban sweat lodge, a place to melt away fears and fat. [www.shapehousela.com]

 
Mastin Kipp Mastin Kipp Writer. Entrepreneur. Daily Lover.

Entrepreneur and writer Mastin Kipp founded TheDailyLove.com, which merges pop culture with inspiration, and co-founded The Love Yourself Company, an apparel company that has started a global self-esteem movement. [www.TheDailyLove.com]

 
Liz Phair Liz Phair singer. musician. crier.

Liz Phair is an American singer-songwriter and guitarist. [www.lizphair.com]

 
Desmond Tutu Desmond Tutu archbishop. author. peaceful leader.

Archbishop Desmond Tutu is Chairman of The Elders, a group of world leaders who address some of the world's most pressing problems. He works energetically for human-rights and in his ministry. [www.tutu.org]

 
Zainab Salbi Zainab Salbi author. ceo. humanitarian.

Zainab Salbi is the founder and CEO of Women for Women International, a group dedicated to helping women survivors of war rebuild their lives. [www.womenforwomen.org]

 
Sean Stephenson Sean Stephenson speaker. psychotherapist. life embracer.

Despite his physical challenges, Sean Stephenson has taken a stand for a quality of life that has inspired millions of people around the world. He's a professional speaker, psychotherapist, and author. [www.timetostand.com]

 
Kia Miller Kia Miller yogi. meditator. teacher.

Kia Miller teaches Yoga at Yoga Works in Los Angeles, leads teacher trainings, and runs retreats and workshops on meditation, chakras, pranayam, and mantras, and other practices. [www.kiamiller.com]

 
Simon Mainwaring Simon Mainwaring creator. writer. idea geek.

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Shannon Bindler Shannon Bindler Strategist. Writer. Life Coach.

Shannon Bindler is a style editor, life coach, and the co-founder of Get Up Girl, an empowerment company that inspires women to shine. [www.getupgirl.com]

 
Mathieu Bitton Mathieu Bitton Designer. Art Director. Passionate Creator.

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Jorge Perez Jorge Perez Agent. Producer. Photography Enthusiast.

Opus Reps founder and agent-producer Jorge Perez travels the world producing photo shoots with great photographers and celebrities. He's also very involved with Meals on Wheels in Los Angeles. www.opusreps.com

 

connector

Joe Demattos Joe Demattos bridge builder. unity advocate. what-if visionary.

As an advocate for quality, person-centered care across all settings, Joseph DeMattos serves as president and CEO of Maryland's oldest and largest provider association of skilled nursing and rehabilitation centers. [www.hfam.org]

joe_demattos_feature

What’s meaningful to me is continuing to be a connector of people and of ideas, connecting what’s possible and being an advocate for protecting what’s right and breaking down what’s wrong. I spend a fair amount of time thinking about What if? and Why not? in solitude, then connecting that vision with others to see if it gets any traction for moving it forward.

This is a tremendous time of advocacy in so many areas. Everyone has something to offer and a difference to make. The role of the advocate is not so much to lead individually, but to create a place where others can contribute in their unique ways within whatever framework is relevant. We can always do better and people and teams can always contribute. The advocate plays the role of not so much leading that work, but navigating it and helping others do their best work.

I grew up in Hawaii, where there’s an extraordinary sense of community and a tradition of unity, of making things right, and togetherness. In a place with those values and with an oral language tradition, the role of the connector between families, groups, and generations becomes much more explicit. In my personal and professional life over the past 50-plus years, I’ve been blessed to pay a fair amount of attention to the role of connector – bridging ideas and encouraging myself and others to forget about the distance across the ravine and imagine instead the bridge we can build together to get to the other side.

When I’m struggling to understand where I am in the moment or where I need to be, I try to remember to push the pause button, to stop and be in the moment. Different people pause in different ways – by listening to music that grounds them, finding more time for family, living in the moment with kids or an elder, doing a spiritual practice, or doing something athletic. For me, I get so much clarity from the solitude of running.

The best advice I can give (and I try to live it myself) is that in the moments you’re struggling to realize what’s important, where you should be, and where you might be headed with others, take the time to push your pause button. It’s a great connector.

Joe Demattos

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