The 2016 Conference is over and planning for 2017 has already started

Save the date:  October 6-8, 2017

 Recommend a Speaker for 2017

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Thanks to our amazing 2016 speakers:

Dianne Bondy

Dianne BondyDianne Bondy is a celebrated yoga teacher, social justice activist and leading voice of the Yoga For All movement. Her inclusive view of yoga asana and philosophy inspires and empowers thousands of followers around the world – regardless of their shape, size, ethnicity, or level of ability.

She applies over 1000 hours of training to help her students find freedom, self-expression and radical self-love in their yoga practice. She shares her message and provides millions of followers with affordable access to online yoga classes, workshops and tutorials at her virtual studio: Yogasteya.com and her personal blog. Dianne contributes to Yoga International, Yoga Journal, Do You Yoga, and Elephant Journal. She is featured and profiled in International media outlets: The Guardian, Huffington Post, Cosmopolitan, and more. She is a spokesperson for diversity in yoga and yoga for larger bodies, as seen in her work with Pennington’s, Gaiam, and the Yoga & Body Image Coalition. Her work is published in the books: Yoga and Body Image, and Yes Yoga Has Curves

Charlotte Cooper

Charlotte Cooper

Dr Charlotte Cooper is a psychotherapist, cultural worker and para-academic based in London, UK. She has been involved with fat activism for 30 years. Her latest book is Fat Activism: A Radical Social Movement (http://hammeronpress.net) and she blogs about fat at http://obesitytimebomb.blogspot.co.uk Find out more about her at http://www.charlottecooper.net

Caleb Luna

Caleb Luna

Caleb Luna is a superfat queer brown femme writer, activist, poet, performer, and first year Ph.D. student in Performance Studies at UC Berkeley. Their work explores the intersections of fatness, desire, fetishism, white supremacy and colonialism from a queer of color lens. You can find more of their writing on Black Girl Dangerous and Facebook and Tumblr under queerandpresentdanger.

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Kerry Beake

Kerry BeakeKerry Beake is a Australian nutritionist, lecturer, small business owner and passionate HAES advocate. After a 12 year career in advertising and marketing Kerry ditched that to pursue her passion for health and wellness. As a mature-aged student she started with a Bachelor of Science in Human Biology (minor in Biomedical Science and an emphasis in Genetics) then a post graduate degree in Counselling to achieve stage 1 qualification as a Genetic Counsellor. It was during this time she stumbled on the concept of Health at Every Size from the writings of Jon Robinson, ASDAH, Linda Bacon and others and has never looked back. Eager to learn more reading everything and reaching out to the authors and community was pivotal living in the most isolated city in the world where the idea of anything except weight loss was crazy talk. It was through this community that the reality that weight was only the tip of the iceberg. Body size was intertwined with discrimination against fat bodies, gender, race, disability, poverty, education and so much more.

A natural advocate Kerry recognised that isolation can be an additional challenge for those in marginalised groups, so she started the Facebook Group “Health at Every Size (HAES)” which has grown to an international community of over 3000. This group has not only helped lessen the feeling of isolation, created friendships, strengthened advocacy efforts for Kerry but also those new and not so new to HAES find a safe space to share and discuss the real issues that people face on a day to day basis. Along the way she has developed and delivered public health programs on nutrition, presented to and trained groups and individuals and has established a local nutrition practice. Kerry’s talk will consider the need for and importance of connected communities and how to use technology to create and maintain them regardless of our physical location as the basis for health that is not just physical but also mental and social. How belonging to a community is vital to advocate for ourselves and as part of the greater advocacy efforts to shift the dominant paradigm to one that is inclusive and supportive of all bodies regardless of size, shape, age, race, culture, gender and ability. Kerry is currently completing her Masters Degree in Nutrition and Dietetics.

Bevin Branlandingham  


Photo by Julia Cameron Damon

Bevin Branlandingham  is an ultra rad warrior for self-acceptance. She is a writer, performer, healer and cultural producer in Los Angeles, CA who believes that all bodies are good bodies and works to make the world safe for people to love themselves. She blogs at queerfatfemme.com and offers body liberation coaching one on one and through workshops. She provides energy healing through Reiki-infused teas, currently available through her blog and soon at bevinstea.com.

Harriet Brown

Harriet Brown by Jaime Young

Photo by Jaime Young

Harriet Brown’s most recent book is BODY OF TRUTH: HOW SCIENCE, HISTORY, AND CULTURE DRIVE OUR OBSESSION WITH WEIGHT—AND WHAT WE CAN DO ABOUT IT (Da Capo, 2015). She’s an associate professor of magazine journalism at the S.i. Newhouse School of Public Communications, where she teaches a class she created called “Fat & Feminism.”

Alysse Dalessandro

Alysse DalessandroAlysse Dalessandro is a size inclusive designer, fashion and beauty writer, fat positive advocate, plus size fashion blogger, professional speaker, and all-around loudmouth. After graduating from Loyola University Chicago with a double-major in Journalism and Gender Studies, this Cleveland-based entrepreneur is best known as the owner/designer for body positive fashion brand Ready to Stare  and its corresponding personal style blog, #StareStyle. Her writing can also be found on Bustle, The Curvy Fashionista, The Body Is Not An Apology, The Lingerie Addict, and On The Plus Side. Alysse hopes her message resonates with the same people that she designs for: those who believe in following their passion, loving themselves and inspiring others to do the same.

Blog: http://www.readytostare.com/blogs/starestyle
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/readytostare/ Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/readytostare
Twitter: https://twitter.com/readytostare

Velvet D’Amour

Velvet d'Amour by Saima ALTUNKAYA

Photo by Saima Altunkaya

Velvet D’Amour (born 1967) is the American model best known via the worldwide media coverage she received after her appearance as a plus-size model in Jean-Paul Gaultier‘s 2007 Spring/Summer prêt-à-porter collection shown in Paris in October 2006. She also made a catwalk appearance in John Galliano‘s prêt-à-porter showing entitled “Everybody is Beautiful” in 2006, and in the associated French Vogue article featuring photography by Nick Knight. She signed with French model agency AGENCE PLUS in 2005 and went on to model for several mainstream high end fashion magazines for photographers such as Daniele Duella/Iango Henzi, Kourtney Roy, and Ellen Von Unwerth.

D’Amour’s appearance on the catwalk was widely regarded as a response by Gaultier to the international model health debate, although D’Amour is quoted in many interviews stating that Gaultier’s intentions were honest. He was in fact, casting his 30 year retrospective and thus he was harkening back to previous collections where he had already incorporated plus size models, which is how she was cast in the first place.

D’Amour also featured in the title role of Avida, the 2006 French film directed by Gustave de Kervern and Benoît Delépine, and produced by Matthieu Kassovitz, which was selected for the 2006 Cannes and 2007 Tribeca Film Festivals amongst others and has been purchased by CINEMA EPOCH for US distribution. In 2010, she participated in French TF1 TV show : “La Ferme Célébrités en Afrique” spending 9 weeks in the bush in South Africa and raising 56,000 euros for SOS Enfants Disparu. D’Amour’s primary occupation is as a fashion photographer and she has a website that highlights her work at Velvetography.com.

She has launched a magazine called http://www.volup2.com/  that features her photography, as well as other photographers and artists. As d’Amour experienced success as a plus model, she photographs many plus models for Volup2, such as rising plus model Clementine Desseaux, Denise Bidot, and Hayley Hasselhoff. Her main goal with VOLUP2 is to support genuine Diversity and change how society views beauty, so that it may be more encompassing. Recently she had the honor of acting in Luc Besson’s upcoming film Valerian, due out in July 2017.


Kimberly Dark 

Kimberly Dark by Toni Le Busque

Photo by Toni Le Busque

Kimberly Dark is a writer, storyteller and speaker who helps audiences discover that we are creating the world, even as it creates us. She’s the author of seven award-winning performance scripts and a number of educational programs regarding the body in culture – how appearances and identities influence our experiences in the world related to gender, race, body type/size, beauty, ability, etc. She uses humor and intimacy to prompt audiences to discover their influences and reclaim their power as social creators.

Dark is a regular contributor to both news and literary outlets like Decolonizing Yoga, Ms magazine, Everyday Feminism, Full Grown People and other print and online publications. She travels the English-speaking world doing performances and keynote presentations at colleges and universities, conferences, theatres and festivals. She has been invited to present her unique blend of performance and presentation, writing and workshops at hundreds of venues and she also coordinates the yoga program at Kalani, one of Hawaii’s largest retreat centers. She lectures in the graduate program in Sociological Practice at California State University, San Marcos.

The Salt Lake Tribune in Utah says “Dark doesn’t shy away from provocative, incendiary statements, but don’t expect a rant. Her shows, leavened with humor, are more likely to explore how small everyday moments can inform the arc of our lives.” The Evening Echo in Cork, Ireland says “the balance between objectivity and intimate analysis certainly gives Dark an edge and has made her a force to be reckoned with on every level. “ The High Plains Reader in Fargo, North Dakota says “Dark’s skill as a storyteller gets to your heart by exposing hers.”
www.kimberlydark.com, @kimberlydarkhttps://www.facebook.com/kimberly.dark.9

Tiana Dodson

Tiana DodsonTiana Dodson is the Fat Health Coach. When she’s not writing about being fat and winning at life by forgoing the old school belief that you have to be thin to live well and be well, she’s coaching amazing women on creating amazing, healthy lives through learning to love their fat bodies. She writes and enjoys the good life as an expat in Europe. You can find her writing on the Fierce, Freethinking Fatties blog, Elephant Journal, and In Human Parts on Medium. For a free gift from Tiana on how to begin winning in your own fabulous fat life check out more at www.tianadodson.com

Lisa DuBreuil

Lisa Du BreuilLisa DuBreuil, LICSW is a mom, wife, fat activist, and clinical social worker. Since 2003 she has been a psychotherapist doing individual and group work in an outpatient hospital-based clinic, treating people with co-occurring substance use disorders and eating disorders and more recently people with new-onset SUDs and compulsions following weight loss surgery. She also has a private practice in Salem Massachusetts where she treats people diagnosed with binge eating disorder and people dealing with various problems following weight loss surgery.

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Daniel Goldberg

Daniel Goldberg

Daniel S. Goldberg is an attorney, an historian, and a public health ethicist.  Trained as an interdisciplinary scholar, he holds a B.A. with honors in philosophy from Wesleyan University, and received his J.D. magna cum laude from the University of Houston Law Center in 2002.  He clerked for a state supreme court justice and practiced pharmaceutical, hospital, and insurance litigation for several years before earning his Ph.D. with distinction in the medical humanities from the Institute for the Medical Humanities, University of Texas Medical Branch in 2009.

He focuses on public health ethics and population-level bioethics, and his research on the history of pain leads him to ongoing projects within the history of neurology and disability history. His historical projects center on the rise of somaticism in the 19th c. West (e.g., the rise of pathological anatomy, the Birth of the Clinic, etc.) and modern changes in concepts of objectivity. He is an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Public Health at his university, and is currently pursuing a Master’s in Public Health from the University of North Carolina Gillings School of Global Public Health.

Jane Arlene Herman

Jane HermanI am old and I know a lot. I have been a lecturer, educator, organizer, and activist, since (almost) the beginning of time. I know how to share, how to say what needs to be said (which is not necessarily that which people want to hear…), and how to create tiny shifts in the world. I am also a disability, environmental health, LGBTQ, old, and Jewish activist. In my teaching, I encourage people to understand that if you’re oppressed, your life makes you a political activist; wherever I can, I teach that “the personal is political.” During the 1970s, I was a member of the Los Angeles Radical Feminist Therapy Collective. This group, whose members included the visionary and pioneering fat activists Vivian Mayer (a.k.a. Aldebaran) and Judy Freespirit, birthed the Fat Underground and helped shape the early fat feminist movement. I now live in Sonoma County, California with my lovely and brilliant wife, the disability scholar and fat studies scholar Anna Mollow.

Jennifer Nicole Herman

Jennifer HermanJennifer Nicole Herman is a fat activist, a big (fat) dyke, and a hospice nurse. Jennifer is also Jewish, butch, feminist, and a person with multiple chemical sensitivities (MCS). Jennifer is the proud niece of her fabulous fat activist/organizer/writer/scholar aunts, Jane Arlene Herman and Dr. Anna Mollow, who introduced her to fat liberation and have supported, educated, and inspired her over many years as she came to be a fat activist herself. She organizes fat queer social meetups in her community and tweets as @fatpositiveRN. As a nurse, she works to heal the harm done to patients by weight bias and discrimination by providing nurturing, fat-positive healthcare. Jennifer is a student in the Master’s of Science in Nursing Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) program at Sonoma State University. She enjoys volunteering as an RN at the Jewish Community Free Clinic in Santa Rosa, CA.

Jennifer has never recommended weight loss to a single patient, and she never will.  

Rajah Jones

Rajah JonesRajah Jones, 35 years of age, is multiracial Black, Latinx, Intersex NonBinary Womyn. I am a student at Antioch University of Los Angeles. I am currently on membership as Vice President of Trans Chorus Of Los Angeles, chairperson of Trans*formation Unity which is the Trans ministry at Founders Metropolitan Community Church. I am also a member/facilitator with Gender Justice Los Angeles, spokesperson for the TransformCA campaign. I was a Co-Facilitator and core member of Trans Folx Fighting Eating Disorders which trained health professionals from the ED field to be inclusive to Trans and gender diverse folks who suffers from a ED. I facilitated support groups and workshops pertaining to Eating disorder and body image issues. I am also an activist for the low income, disabled neurodiversity, undocumented, and oppressed communities.

Gloria Lucas

Gloria LucasGloria is the creator of Nalgona Positivity Pride (NPP) a multifaceted Xican@/Brown*/Indigenous body positive project that focuses on raising EDs awareness in communities of color and decolonizing body love. Influenced by anachist-feminism and punx music Gloria commits to keeping NPP as a DIY project that is based in the community. Through NPP, she brings into light that gender, ethnicity, class, and historical & modern day oppression all have a role in the development of eating disorders in communities of color.

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Courtney Marshall

 Courtney MarshallCourtney is a New Hampshire-based fat-positive group exercise instructor, personal trainer, and Zumba teacher and Body Positive Fitness Alliance Affiliated Professional.  She specializes in designing effective and motivating exercise programs for larger-bodied athletes.  Courtney holds a PhD in English and is a former English and Women’s Studies professor; she believes that in order to understand the fitness industry, we must learn how histories of marginalization and exploitation create stories about fat bodies’ capabilities and shape our relationships to exercise, labor, and beauty. For her, the fitness industry is built on narratives championing white supremacy, predatory capitalism, and misogyny, and the gym needs to be continually interrogated.  Courtney enjoys a wide variety of sports and activities, including CrossFit, obstacle course racing, powerlifting, pole dancing, tap dance, and triathlons.  She does all these activities in a fat-positive way!

In addition to teaching exercise classes, Courtney also writes and teaches about antiracist and feminist fitness.  In 2015, Courtney founded Wrong Is Not My Name: Black Feminist Fitness and Jump At The Sun Fitness where her goal is to make fitness inclusive, joyous, and accessible.  She brings free community-accountable exercise programs to underserved communities throughout her state and Massachusetts and is most excited about bring Zumba class to incarcerated women in New Hampshire.  Courtney has spoken about Black feminist fitness at a number of locations, including California State University, Los Angeles, Agnes Scott College, the University of Southern Maine, the New England Food Summit, the Black New England Conference, and the Massachusetts LGBT Domestic Violence Coalition.  She is currently working on two writing projects: Jump At The Sun, a training diary filled with Black feminist quotes, and Ain’t I An Athlete?, a book of essays about her experiences as an unapologetic fat Black female athlete navigating gym culture.  She is also co-editing Throwing Our Weight Around, a collection of writings by fat athletes.

Stef Maruch

Stef MaruchStef Maruch has been involved in fat activist and social justice since the mid-1990s. Ze maintains the Fat Friendly Health Professionals List at http://fatfriendlydocs.org, which has been described as lifesaving.

Stef has lived on Earth for over half a century and identifies as white, superfat, disabled, queer, and non-binary/masculine of center. In zir capacity as a fatshionista, ze keeps a list of US retailers of clothing in superfat sizes. Ze appreciates cats, cephalopods, and working with
beads, paper, and yarn. Stef can be found on Facebook and at http://firecat.dreamwidth.org

Roz “The Diva” Mays

Roz the DivaNASM certified Roz “The Diva” Mays has dedicated many late nights at the gym to becoming a stronger and healthier athlete. Pole dancing is her sport of choice, followed by TRX, strength & conditioning and flexibility. Among her finest contributions to the pole world has been creating Dangerous Curves: A Celebration of Plus Size Pole Dancers . Her talents have lead to a SAG membership for professional stunt work in Law and Order: SVU, The Big C and That’s My Boy . She loves to teach obnoxiously loud classes at Body & Pole, IncrediPOLE and Brooklyn Fit Lab in New York City. Recently, she was a featured contestant on NBC’s America’s Got Talent, Season 10. When she isn’t half naked and sweaty, Diva’s usual making pancakes with Beyonce.

Irene McCalphin

Irene McCalphinIrene McCalphin used to be as ice cold as an Artic breeze on Solstice night until she began encountering a plethora of oppressed fatties like herself. She got heated when she realized how a Eurocentric and sizest society actively creates a cage to deny fatties and PoCs access to healthcare, love, financial stability and humane treatment. As a public speaker, published author, performance artist, producer, model, MC on mainstream burlesque and cabaret stages she literally stands naked at the crossroads of multiple marginalizations in direct confrontation of the desirability dogma. She has zero chill.

Jessica Wilson and Irene will highlight how desire can be used as a weapon, and provide opportunities for listeners to join FQDUP* in the de-weaponization and decolonization of desire!

*FQDUP is pronounced F*cked Up, and comes from the acronyms of Fat Queer and Disabled, rising UP

Click Here to Register!

Jeanette Miller

Jeanette Miller PhotoArtist, Writer, Activist, Catalyst. Passionate about working in ways that help to catalyze social justice movements, Jeanette is following a calling to live and work in communities across the country to support projects creating meaningful change based in human rights. Author of “Dating While Fat: One Fierce Fat Girl’s Experience,” Politics of Size: Perspectives from the Fat Acceptance Movement and other writings; Jeanette is a fierce, fat, feminist, and social justice activist, blogger, writer/artist, and hip hop addict with a penchant for living life boldly. She has presented on topics connected to fat activism and size acceptance at the Popular Culture Association National Conference, The Organization for the Study of Communication, Language & Gender National Conference and as part of a Santa Clara University Women’s Studies’ Lunch Lecture.  Jeanette holds an M.A. in English Literature from Portland State University and has an ongoing interest in systems thinking, movement building, gender/identity studies, fat studies/activism, storytelling and education transformation.

Professionally, Jeanette has worked as an office administrator for several public and private universities in Oregon and California, as Director of Operations for a national nonprofit and received a co-authored grant to support engagement in a youth program based in Jackson, MS designed to interrupt the “school to prison pipeline,” through practices based in democratic education, restorative justice, and the development of emotional intelligence. She’s also recently served as Board President for Body Love 4 All, an organization with a “mission to empower everyBODY to discover and celebrate themselves, develop confidence, and create positive and supportive communities.”

Jeanette currently lives and works in Houston, TX while she completes her MS in Natural Resources with a concentration in Leadership for Sustainability from the University of Vermont’s Rubenstein School and is preparing to embark on a year-long story-sharing project in the hopes of creating a public platform to generate insight, compassion and critical dialogue around the common threads that connect our humanity, with the collection and adaptation of stories shared through visual art, about how we move through the world in our bodies. You can connect with Jeanette on social media (twitter/instagram)@Wr1terGurl and visit her blog at www.Wr1terGurl.com

Naomi Ortiz

Naomi OrtizNaomi Ortiz is a writer, poet and visual artist who cracks apart common beliefs and spills out beauty. Her art is like dirt, hundreds of pieces coming together growing nourishment. In her activist work, Naomi is a nationally known speaker and trainer on self-care for activists, disability justice, and intersectionality. She has conducted hundreds of workshops and trainings on a wide range of areas, including: conflict resolution projects in prisons, organizational development for non-profits, youth leadership, disability justice, disability pride, practices and rituals for self-care and intersectionality, using art and poetry to build bridges within. Naomi has published articles, manuals and poems. She is a Disabled, Mestiza (Latina) living in the U.S./Mexico borderlands and her current project is a book exploring self-care for social justice activists and their communities. Naomi’s blog can be found at: www.selfcareforsocialjustice.com

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Corbett Joan OToole

Corbett Joan OToole 1Corbett Joan OToole is a long time disability rights activist, fiber artist, mother, historian and all-round fat queer badass. Her most recent book, Fading Scars: My Queer Disability History is a finalist for the 2016 Lambda Literary Awards in LGBT Nonfiction.

A longtime innovator, she’s co-organized many historic events including the 2002 Queer Disability Conference; the U.S. disabled women’s contingent to the United Nations Fourth International Conference on Women in Beijing, China; the first all women’s team for the US Power Soccer Association; and the Conversations and Connections Across Race, Disability and Identity Symposium.

By the mid-1980s she burned out educating dominant culture people who didn’t want to change and she began to work exclusively inside social justice communities. She provides mentorship and leadership to interested individuals, consults with social justice leaders, and writes about what she is learning.

Now in her 60s she focuses on documenting the movements and people she’s been privileged to know. For the Fat Activist Conference she is sharing publicly for the first time her thinking about the intersections of being fat and disabled. She is grateful to the longtime work of the fat activist community in challenging the myths about health. With alot of support, she is in early recovery from a Binge Eating Disorder – a journey that’s brought many unexpected gifts of new people and ideas. Corbett is thrilled to be participating as a speaker in this year’s Fat Activist Conference.

Cat Pausé

Cat PauseCat Pausé is the lead editor of Queering Fat Embodiment. A Senior Lecturer in Human Development and Fat Studies Researcher at Massey University, her research focuses on the effects of spoiled identities on the health and well-being of fat individuals. She has published in top journals such as Human DevelopmentFeminist ReviewHERDSA, and Narrative Inquiries in Bioethics. Cat hosted Fat Studies: Reflective Intersections in New Zealand in 2012, and is hosting Fat Studies: Identity, Agency, and Embodiment in June of 2016. Her fat positive radio show, Friend of Marilyn, is travelling the world this year – make sure your city is on the stop!

Amy Pence-Brown

Amy Pence-BrownAmy Pence-Brown is a fat feminist mother who believes in opening her mouth and her heart. From both of these places she tells a powerful story of vulnerability, courage, and body positivity and the importance of taking a stand for something you believe in. As a body image activist, Pence-Brown became famous in 2015 for her radical stand for self-love in a black bikini and a blindfold in Boise, Idaho, which was documented in a blog post, photographs and a video viewed over 150 million times. Her message about the value of all bodies, no matter their size, has been covered by numerous media outlets, including CNN, USA Today, Cosmopolitan, People, TODAY, Huffington Post, Upworthy, HLN, WGN Morning News Chicago, SHAPE, the Dr. Oz show, MSN and NPR.

For more information on Amy’s activism, writing, art and press links, visit her website: www.amypencebrown.com
You can also watch her TED talk, The Stand For Self-Love, here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VnTLFlQ419s
Instagram: www.instagram.com/Idaho_amy
Twitter: www.twitter.com/idahoamy
Facebook: www.facebook.com/idahostyle/

Julia Rogers

Julia RogersJulia Rogers is a Scholar-Activist currently residing in San Diego. She is a Doctoral Candidate in Sociology and Science Studies at University of California, San Diego. Her dissertation uses situational analysis to map the emerging controversy of the “obesity paradox” and the attempted paradigm shift to a weight neutral paradigm. Her work has been presented at multiple international conferences and she is a student affiliate of the Center for Research on Gender in STEMM.  In her free time Julia does Yoga and sings with the UCSD Gospel Choir.

Eileen Rosensteel

Eileen RosensteelEileen Rosensteel is a bodacious Bohemian committed to embodying sacredness. Her portfolio includes a show about circus fat ladies, dancing in a non-normative body and poetry about what it’s like being a fat woman in today’s society. Connect with her on facebook!


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Andrea Shaw Nevins

Andrea Shaw NevinsAndrea Shaw Nevins is chair of the Department of History and Political Science and professor of English at Nova Southeastern University in Ft. Lauderdale. She is a creative writer and a scholar of Caribbean and African Diaspora studies and author of The Embodiment of Disobedience: Fat Black Women’s Unruly Political Bodies. Her forthcoming book tentatively titled “Working Juju: Representations of the Caribbean Fantastic” is under contract from the University of Georgia Press for publication in 2017.  Her creative and scholarly writing have been published in numerous journals, including Small Axe, World Literature Today, MaComére, The Caribbean Writer, Crab Orchard Review, Feminist Media Studies, and Social Semiotics. She graduated from the University of Miami with a Ph.D. in English and from Florida International University with an M.F.A in creative writing.

Mirna Valerio

Mirna ValerioMirna Valerio is an ultramarathoner, cross country coach, equity and inclusion educator, blogger at Fat Girl Running, and contributor to Women’s Running Magazine. In 2015 her running and fitness journey was featured in the Wall Street Journal, Runner’s World Magazine, and NBC Nightly News, helping to broaden the conversation about plus-sized athletes and participation in the traditionally “aspirational body only” world of sports. Mirna is a fierce proponent of the idea of athletic pursuit as a way of engaging in self-love, body-positivity and body-acceptance. She is currently working on a running memoir due to be published in the fall of 2017.

Saucye West

Saucye WestSaucye West began modeling in August 2010. She started as a model for Full Figure Entertainment as a promotional model. That opportunity introduced her to doing runway. After becoming a mother she continued modeling as a hobby. But the loss of her daughter’s father catapulted her into modeling in a more professional way. She began doing more runway and crossing over into doing print modeling where she has now been published in over a dozen print and online magazines as well as featured in the Huffington Post and Wear Your Voice Magazine.

Saucye has taken her role into the size activism world and uses her social media presence to help uplift and inspire women of all sizes to love themselves no matter what size they are.  Her goal is to use this platform to change the standard of beauty in the fashion industry as well as society. And promote size acceptance among the masses.

For Booking inquires saucyewest@gmail.com  Facebook www.facebook.com/saucyewest
Instagram www.instagram.com/saucyewest
Model Mayhem www.modelmayhem.com/3415224 Blog www.saucyewest.com
Official Website www.saucyewestplusmodel.com

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Yolanda Williams

Yolanda WilliamsYolanda Williams is the Founder and CEO of Just Curves Activewear.  As a plus size woman who has struggled with body acceptance and self-love, Yolanda understands the importantance feeling comfortable and confident in your clothes is to keeping women motivated to work out.  She wanted to create high-quality active apparel that was not only fashionable but functional and most importantly designed with curves in mind.  Just Curves is a physical manifestation of Yolanda’s mission to empower women to live happier and healthier lives now by accepting our bodies as they are and daring to love ourselves no matter our dress size.  Check out Just Curves at: http://justcurves.net

Jessica Wilson

Jessica WilsonJessica Wilson was bored, very bored, with the conversations she was having about body politics. She decided to build a movement that uses direct action to disrupt body appraisal and surveillance; FQDUP*! The movement is in its infancy, but is fierce and growing. It holds the experiences and voices of PoC at the center of the movement. As a sick person, Jessica is especially interested in the Performance of Good Health in Western society, and the many ways that bodies of color are pathologized because so often Health equals whiteness in the US. As a queer, black woman, she’s experienced how the politics of desire have shaped her body’s appraisal.

Jessica Wilson and Irene McCalphinwill highlight how desire can be used as a weapon, and provide opportunities for listeners to join FQDUP in the de-weaponization and decolonization of desire!

*FQDUP is pronounced F*cked Up, and comes from the acronyms of Fat Queer and Disabled, rising UP

*Jill Andrew was originally scheduled to speak but had to cancel due to illness.

Click Here to Register!

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3 Responses to Speakers

  1. tanteterri says:

    So great to see a list of speakers that is so diverse! This is going to be great getting to hear so many voices from interconnecting communities.

  2. billfabrey says:

    Wow–it’s like a “who’s who” of fat activists! Totally awe-inspiring!

  3. Impressive lineup. Sure to be empowering.

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