Meet 8 More Change Makers Coming to the First HUBweek Change Maker Conference

On October 8 and 9th, Change Makers from Greater Boston and around the world will come together to build community, inspire, plan, and problem-solve for our future at the inaugural Change Maker Conference. A highly interactive experience, the Change Maker Conference will convene artists, entrepreneurs, scientists, activists, educators, and more from across disciplines.

Meet a few Change Makers who will be attending this fall:

  1. Rupal Patel: Founder, VocaliD

About Rupal: Rupal founded VocaliD, a voice AI company that gives personality to digital voices by leveraging its crowdsourced voicebank of 26,000+ speakers from around the world. Whether empowering those living with speech impairments or creating a customized vocal identity for a brand or organization, VocaliD voices are changing how digital voices are being heard. Her work has been featured on TED, NPR, and in leading news and technology outlets such as The Wall Street Journal, BBC, Wired, Bloomberg, and BuzzFeed and she was recently named one of Fast Company’s 100 Most Creative people in Business.

Why she’s coming to the HUBweek Change Maker Conference: I am looking forward to meeting people in Boston addressing key challenges to see if there may be ways to work together. It’s inspiring to step back every once in a while to see the bigger picture.


2. Lucas Cowan: Public Art Curator, Rose Kennedy Greenway Conservancy

About Lucas: Lucas became the Conservancy’s first Public Art Curator in September 2014. He came to the Conservancy from the Maryland State Arts Council where, as Director of Public Art Programs, he administered public art projects for public and private entities and spearheaded the passage of legislation requiring all state-funded capital projects to include public art. Previously, he served as Senior Curator of Exhibits for the Chicago Office of Tourism and Culture and Millennium Park.

Why he’s coming: I hope to bring an artistic and curatorial perspective through a public lens. My work is centered around creating experiences encountered within the public realm, and always taking the risky path in exploring the ideas and concepts of artists and how they can connect, contradict and reimagine public space. I am constantly working to challenge the notion of the question ‘what if..?’”


3. Donald Alexis: President and Founder, Caribbean Integration Community Development

About Donald: Donald is the President and founder of Caribbean Integration Community Development (CICD), an affordable housing and community development organization that focuses on neighborhoods with large Caribbean populations. His mission is to improve the lives of Caribbean-Americans by delivering equitable development that reflects the unique needs and values of this diverse group of people. Donald founded CICD in Mattapan in 2012, with an aim to bring fresh perspectives to community developments and amplify the voice of a group that has been historically neglected.

As an immigrant himself, Donald believes that housing is not a privilege, but a basic human right. His philosophy is community-centric, advocating individual participation in the economic and social conversations that spur real investment and tangible growth. By focusing efforts on stabilizing and revitalizing the working-class immigrant community, Donald has advanced an approach that enables and encourages the disenfranchised to become more involved with the community, transforming city-owned parcels into thriving community assets that attract real investment.

Why he’s coming: I want to be a part of the Change Maker Conference because I believe this environment sets the stage for innovating and impactful conversation amongst thought leaders. With this as a backdrop, I see myself fostering conversations that tackle social and global urbanization issues with the best and brightest in Boston.


4. Sheena Collier: Founder and CEO, The Collier Connection

About Sheena: Sheena is a superconnector, community organizer, & strategic event planner. In 2016, she founded The Collier Connection to build an ecosystem in Boston that connects people of color to resources, information, experiences, and each other. She hosts a monthly dinner, Society 1925, to connect native Bostonians, long-time transplants, and those new to the area. In 2019, she is launching a series of meet-ups, workshops, special events, and online content to teach Black people and people of color about “Becoming a Bostonian.” She can also be found at conferences or your local coffee shop showing people how to find their tribe, activate their professional network, learn how to navigate the city, and have fun.

Why she’s coming: I am excited to connect with others who are working to make Boston a place that is innovative and inclusive. None of us can create the city that we want to live in by ourselves. Hopefully, my next business or program partner is in the room!


5. Jeff Karp: Professor of Medicine, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School

About Jeff: Jeff Karp is a Professor of Medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School. He works across drug delivery, medical devices, stem cell therapeutics, and tissue adhesives. He has published over 100 peer-reviewed papers, with more than 15,000 citations, and has over 100 issued or pending national and international patents. Several technologies developed in his lab have formed the foundation for multiple products currently in development or on the market. He has helped launch six companies that together have raised over $100 million. Dr. Karp is also dedicated to developing the careers of the next generation bioengineers working at the forefront of translational science. To date, 20 of his trainees have secured faculty positions.

Why he’s coming: To meet amazing people, hear different perspectives and develop relationships to ultimately help others.


6. Karen Young: Founding Director, The Genki Spark

About Karen: Karen is one of seven Artists In Residence addressing issues of resilience and racial equity for the City of Boston. Partnering with BCYF Grove Hall Senior Center, Karen is investigating the power and voice of elders of color and how effectively that power and voice can be developed through social practice art to address systemic factors of vulnerability in their community. Based in Dorchester, her visibility campaign and impact project, ‘Older and Bolder’ bolsters the voice of elder women of color in their 60’s, 70’s, and 80’s using Japanese Taiko Drumming.

Influenced by Japanese-American taiko activists of the 60’s, Young is the fire behind The Genki Spark, a multi-generational, pan-Asian women’s arts and advocacy organization that uses taiko drumming, personal stories, and creativity to build community, develop leadership, and advocate respect for all.

Why she’s coming: I am eager to be around others who think about building forward moving communities of equity and respect.


7. Josh Trautwein: Co-Founder and Executive Director, Fresh Truck

About Josh: Josh is passionate about making sure that all kids grow up to be their best selves. He co-founded and serves as the Executive Director of Fresh Truck, leading development and strategic planning. At Fresh Truck, he works to make food a more integrated part of our community health care systems. Right now, he is conducting an evaluation of their programs to develop an evidence basis for our retail model and food prescription operating system.

Why he’s coming: I’m excited to hear about what else is happening within the space of community health care and the social determinants of health. I am also interested in completely stepping outside of the space of food/health care and learn about what other Change Makers have going on in their worlds.


8. Ellice Patterson: Founder and Director, Abilities Dance

About Ellice: Patterson is the founder and director of Abilities Dance, a Boston-based dance company that welcomes dancers of all cognitive and physical abilities. Her work in Abilities is modern-focused with an adaptive twist so that dance is accessible to all. The concept started eight years ago when she had a spinal operation that left her relearning how to dance. Outside of exclusively Abilities Dance’s shows, her choreography has appeared in Third Life Choreographer Series, Green St. Studio’s SEEDS showcase and Garage Festival, Lacey Sasso & Company’s Deeply Rooted, Bill Evans Somatic Conference, Boston Contemporary Dance Festival, and The Series: Vol IV at the Ailey Citigroup Theatre. She has appeared in the Dove Real Beauty and Slick Chicks campaigns. She has given lectures and workshops at universities and organizations across the country.

Why she’s coming: The Change Maker Conference will be a great way to meet incredible folks doing important work in their communities. I hope to engage in honest dialogue, learn from them, and potentially collaborate on future initiatives!


Want to become a HUBweek Change Maker? Learn more, check out the latest list of Change Makers and apply here.

HUBweek is a festival for the future that explores innovation at the intersections of art, science and technology. Founded by The Boston Globe, Harvard University, Massachusetts General Hospital, and MIT, HUBweek is a first-of-its-kind civic collaboration that brings together the most creative and inventive minds in making an impact in Boston and around the world.This fall, HUBweek and our founders will host the first annual Change Maker Conference from October 8–9 during HUBweek. This will be a highly interactive program with an eye towards human impact and a focus on action and outcomes. For more, visit HUBweek.org.