This year's International School of Brooklyn Powered by Pecha Kucha event will be held on Friday, March 8th, 6:30pm-8:30pm.
Please join us for refreshments at 6:30pm. The presentations will begin promptly at 7:00pm.
General Admission tickets start at $30. Seating is limited; purchase your tickets now! Purchases of the Adventurer Ticket, the Advocate Ticket, and the Leader Ticket will count towards participation in ISB's Annual Fund for Excellence! Prefer to pay by cash or check? Please contact Sandra Bueno in the Advancement Office.

Meet our presenters:

Rupa Bhattacharya, Editor in Chief at MUNCHIES, Vice Media

Rupa Bhattacharya runs food content for VICE, the youth media company, as the editor-in-chief of their food vertical. She's an editor, writer, occasional food stylist, and strategist who has held numerous jobs in food and beverage media.

Christian Drobnyk, Executive Vice President for Programming and Strategy for National Geographic Channels

Christian oversees the program scheduling strategy, planning, and acquisitions for National Geographic Channel, Nat Geo WILD, and Nat Geo Mundo. Drobnyk leads the design and execution of the network’s programming and acquisition strategy, and the coordination of global launches that maximize audience and performance across the National Geographic portfolio. He plays an integral role in the communication and implementation of network strategies across all shows and platforms. Drobnyk joined National Geographic Partners from A+E Networks, where he was senior vice president, programming strategy, acquisitions and co-pro for Lifetime and Lifetime Movie Network. At Lifetime Drobnyk led the successful reinvention of the programming strategy around premium, original content with series like “UnReal” and “Mary Kills People.” He also initiated a higher-caliber original movie strategy, showcasing A-list talent like Viola Davis, Minnie Driver, Will Ferrell and Saoirse Ronan and resulting in a record number of Emmy nominations. Prior to Lifetime, Drobnyk was GM at UKTV Entertainment Networks at BBC Worldwide, where he oversaw all aspects of UKTV’s entertainment networks: Dave, Gold, Watch and Alibi. Drobnyk joined BBC Worldwide from Discovery, where he led programming and development for TLC.

Sam Gradess, Educator and Performer

Sam is the 5th Grade Head English Teacher and Academic Support Teacher at ISB. After co-authoring his first publication in the International Journal of Chronobiology, Sam boarded a plane bound for Burkina Faso. As an education volunteer with the United States Peace Corps, Sam managed two U.S.A.I.D grants to fund training for teachers and administration, focusing on the reduction of gender-based violence in schools and strengthening capacities of teachers to practice positive discipline techniques. Upon returning to New York, Sam taught third, fourth, and fifth students in a public school. Through constructivist math and balanced literacy curriculums, Sam's students performance in math, reading, and writing soared. Seeking new challenges, Sam returned to West Africa in Cameroon to provide technical support to refugee resettlement programs in Eastern Cameroon and the Far North. This year, Sam joined ISB as an English teacher and math academic support specialist after managing a community-based education project in rural Afghanistan.  His work in Afghanistan focused on handing over community classrooms to government ministries to ensure sustainable education opportunities for students, especially girls, in regions plagued by war and climate change. Sam is a proud member of the New York City Gay Men's Chorus.

Jamal Harris, MD, MPH, Assistant Medical Director of the Montefiore School Health Program

Jamal Harris MD, MPH is Assistant Professor in the Division of General Academic Pediatrics at the Children's Hospital at Montefiore & the Albert Einstein College of Medicine and Assistant Medical Director of the Montefiore School Health Program (MSHP)—the largest and most comprehensive school-based health program in the country—providing coordinated primary and preventive healthcare to public elementary, middle and high school students throughout the Bronx.  His areas of interest include community pediatrics, health disparities, primary care behavioral health integration, quality improvement, and implementation science. He received his MD from Harvard Medical School and his MPH from the University of California Berkeley. He is the proud parent of Langston (age 6) and Ellison (age 4).

Kristine Herman, Gender Justice Attorney

Kristine Herman is a gender justice attorney with more than 15 years of experience working at the intersections of law, human rights and gender. She has worked in countries such as Azerbaijan and Afghanistan on issues of domestic and sexual violence and human rights. She has served as an expert consultant on domestic violence and court reform to the Victoria Department of Justice and the New South Wales Attorney General’s Office, Australia; examined legislative efforts in Azerbaijan, Armenia and Georgia for compliance with international conventions and best practices; and provided comments and recommendations to draft laws on gender equality, domestic violence and juvenile justice. Prior to returning to New York, Ms. Herman worked as a Gender Advisor for the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, based in Vienna, Austria, where she provided expertise on integrating a gender perspective into projects and policies in South-Eastern Europe, Eastern Europe, the South Caucasus and Central Asia.  

Kirsten Johnson, Filmaker

Kirsten Johnson’s film CAMERAPERSON, named New York Times ‘Top Ten Films of 2016’ was shortlisted for the Academy Award.  Her short THE ABOVE, filmed in Afghanistan, premiered at the 2015 New York Film Festival and was nominated for the IDA’s ‘Best Short Award’ for 2016. She has shot documentaries for 25 years and her camerawork appears in Academy Award winner CITIZEN FOUR, Academy nominated THE INVISIBLE WAR, and Cannes Winner FAHRENHEIT 9/11. She is one of the 4% of American Society of Cinematography members who are women.

Céline Marchal, Mindfulness Practitioner and Founder of Food et Voilà

Céline is a mother of two and the founder of Food et Voilà! a brand new, Brooklyn-based, family-friendly meal delivery service. She discovered mindfulness meditation in 2009, when she attended the Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) program in Paris. For ten years she’s been striving to cultivate mindfulness in her life, and to share it with her family, friends, and beyond.

Juliette Michaelson, Executive Vice President at Regional Plan Association

Juliette is executive vice president at Regional Plan Association, the leading civic urban-planning organization for the New York tristate area. Juliette led the production of the landmark Fourth Regional Plan, a once-a-generation, comprehensive plan to promote prosperity, equity, health and sustainability in the region. The plan was created over five years and involved hundreds of civic groups, community-grassroots organizations, business leaders and designers, giving the plan a broad base of support as we pivot to implementation. As EVP, Juliette also oversees RPA’s operations, including strategic direction, external communications, development and finance.

David Renard, Strategy and Marketing Consultant

David Renard has 20+ years of international strategy, product management, marketing, analytics and consulting experience with a focus on digital and media/publishing. He has built startups in the media/magazine and tech space (Stare, Netcirculation, Mediaideas, The Loadown, My Placemaking) and advised both multinationals (e.g. Gartner, Reliance Games, Random House, Conde Nast) and start-ups (e.g. Surface Media, V Magazine, Complex, 7Park Data) on corporate strategy, performance analytics and business intelligence, pricing, digital/social marketing, and audience development.

Brad Shepik, Guitarist, Composer, and Educator

Brad Shepik has recorded 9 albums with his groups Brad Shepik Organ Trio, Brad Shepik Quartet, Brad Shepik Trio, Human Activity Quintet, Brad Shepik and the Commuters. Since 1995 his ensembles have performed at major festivals and clubs across Europe and North America including The North Sea Jazz Festival, Garda Jazz Festival, Cologne Biennale Jazz Festival, Toulouse Jazz Festival, Bell Atlantic Festival, Verizon, Earshot, Caramoor Jazz Festival, Langnau Jazz Festival, Groningen, Salzburg, Jerez, Cadiz, Sevilla, American Guitar Festival, Leeds, Rochester Jazz Festival, Cork, Brussels, Edgefest and others.

Laure Sinnhuber-Giles, Midwife, Lactation Counselor, and Childbirth Educator

Laure is a board certified midwife, a certified lactation counselor and a certified childbirth educator. Originally from France, Laure lived in Germany, Japan and the UK prior to settling in NYC. The pivotal experience of giving birth to her daughters supported by an accomplished midwife inspired her to leave her career in advertising and to start her journey on the path of learning to support women and their families in their transition to parenthood. In 2007 she initiated the Healthy Birth Choices workshop series at the not-for-profit advocacy group Choices in Childbirth: the power of storytelling inspired over 1500 NYC families to think about their options and decide what was right for them. She supported families as a labor doula, lactation counselor and childbirth educator. She trained as a midwife’s assistant at Ina May Gaskin’s Farm Midwifery Center. Subsequently, she shadowed midwives in the UK, in the Netherlands and in Amish Country Pennsylvania. She also participated in the Foundation for the Advancement of Haitian Midwives’ first conference in Haiti. She combines her love of languages, cultural diversity and physiologic birth by providing her birth services in English, French, German and Spanish - her Japanese is rusty! - and strives to support women in tapping into their inner strength during this wondrous life transition.