November 6, 2019

We are very excited to announce that we have a whole host of brilliant speakers and facilitators joining us for our 2019 symposium Provoking Change: The Arts & Kindness conversation. The day will be jam packed full of provocation, conversation and debate and below we introduce the array of speakers who will be in attendance at this one-day kindness extravaganza! For news and updates about the event follow #provokingchange19.

The Speakers

Speaker Biographies

Dr Darren Henley OBE, CEO Arts Council England

Dr Darren Henley OBE is Chief Executive of Arts Council England. Before joining the Arts Council in 2015, he led Classic FM for fifteen years first as managing editor and then as managing director. The author of two independent government reviews into music education and cultural education, his books include The Virtuous Circle: Why Creativity and Cultural Education Count, The Arts Dividend: Why Investment in Culture Pays, and Creativity: Why It Matters. He holds a doctorate in professional studies, master’s degrees in management and in history of art, and a degree in politics. He is a Certified Coach and a Certified NLP Master Practitioner. Appointed an OBE for services to music, he received the British Academy President’s Medal for his contributions to music education, music research and the arts.

Miranda McKearney OBE, Founder of the Empathy Lab

Miranda founded national charity The Reading Agency in 2002 after 25 years of experimental work with literature and libraries. She now leads the new organisation she has founded – EmpathyLab, which builds children’s empathy skills and social activism through stories.

Sue Mayo, Artist and researcher at Goldsmiths, University of London

Sue Mayo is a theatre maker and a researcher, specialising in community-based arts practice across generations. She works with arts organisations and independently, developing collaborative performance methodologies, as well as training and mentoring artists. She runs the MA in Applied Theatre at Goldsmiths, where she recently won the Warden’s Public Engagement Award 2019.

Michele Gregson CEO, National Society for Education in Art and Design

Michele Gregson is General Secretary and Head of the National Society for Education in Art & Design.  After 12 years in the classroom as an Art & Design teacher,  Michele joined Kent County Council’s School Improvement Service, first as part of a team of Advanced Skills Teachers, then as Kent Advisor for Art & Design. She then specialised in the design, leadership and evaluation of  learning and community programmes. She has a particular interest in children’s leadership through their practice as artists, and their potential to bring about social change.

Jane Steele, Director of Evidence and Learning, Paul Hamlyn Foundation

Jane is Director of Evidence and Learning at the Paul Hamlyn Foundation where she leads on helping the Foundation and the organisations it supports to make good use of evaluation and research. Jane sits on the Advisory Board for the US-based Center for Effective Philanthropy and chairs the Association of Charitable Foundation’s working group on impact and learning.

Matt Peacock MBE, Founder & Director @ With One Voice

Matt Peacock MBE is Director of With One Voice and passionate about the arts being integrated into homelessness services, enabling people to thrive and not just survive. He is a former support worker, Founder of Streetwise Opera, one of Evening Standard’s Most Influential Londoners and was awarded an MBE in 2011.

Bernadette Russell, Storyteller

Bernadette is a kindness campaigner, author and storyteller. She writes non fiction for adults and children and has created shows for the National Theatre, Southbank Centre and Birmingham Rep amongst many others. She was selected as one of the Southbank Centre’s “Changemakers” for her project 366 Days of Kindness.

Gay Haskins, Saïd Business School, Oxford University and author of Kindness in Leadership

Gay has forty years’ experience in leadership development. She has been Dean of Executive Education at London Business School and Saïd Business School (Oxford University). She is a qualified drama teacher and an advocate of the contribution of the arts to learning. She is co-author of Kindness in Leadership (Routledge, 2018),one of the first books to explore the links between kindness and organisational performance.

Jo Broadwood, CEO @ Belong

Belong’s vision is a more integrated less divided society. We connect organisations and individuals from across different sectors and localities to share ideas, knowledge and experience in order to build the capacity, skills and resources for a more cohesive, integrated and peaceful society.

R.M Sánchez-Camus, Artist and co-founder of the Social Arts Network

R.M Sánchez-Camus is a UK-based creative practitioner and researcher interested in collaboration, interaction, psychogeography, community wellbeing, and social systems. His arts practice incorporates community co-design into installations, walks, text, and performance.

Recent work focuses on the building of support and exchange systems for artists working in social art practice. Marcelo is the co-founder of Social Art Network and recently co-convened the Social Art Summit in Sheffield leading to the world’s first Social Art Biennale. He has extensive experience in arts & health with a focus on arts as a therapeutic intervention in the dying process.

Ben Thurman, The UK Carnegie Trust and co-author of The Practice of Kindness

Ben works for the Carnegie UK Trust, where he leads their policy and practice on kindness. Most recently he has been coordinating a ‘Kindness Innovation Network’ of people and practitioners in Scotland who are interested in encouraging kindness in their communities and organisations.

We are so thrilled to have these inspirational speakers joining us at our 2019 symposium Provoking Change: The Arts & Kindness conversation and we are sure it will be a thought-provoking day. Join our conversations using #provokingchange19.


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