April 23-27, 2007
Hyatt Regency
Crown Center
Kansas City, Missouri

Featured Keynote Speakers

l John M. Barry

l Storm Cunningham

 John M. Barry

John M. Barry is a prize-winning and New York Times best-selling author whose books have won more than twenty awards. The National Academy of Sciences gave The Great Influenza: The Epic Story of the Deadliest Plague in History the 2005 Keck Award for the year’s outstanding book on science or medicine, and the Center for Biodefense and Emerging Pathogens gave Barry its 2005 “September Eleventh Award.” Rising Tide: The Great Mississippi Flood of 1927 and How It Changed America, won the 1998 Francis Parkman Prize given by the Society of American Historians for the year’s outstanding book of American history.

His books have had concrete impact. A member of several advisory boards including at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and a federal government Infectious Disease Board of Experts, he has advised federal, state, and World Health Organization officials on influenza, crisis management, and communications strategy. After Hurricane Katrina, the Louisiana Congressional delegation asked him to chair a bipartisan working group on flood control. He is co-originator of Riversphere, a $125 million center being developed by Tulane University which will be the first facility in the world dedicated to comprehensive river research. The National Academy of Sciences has asked him to give major speeches on entirely unrelated subjects, as keynote speaker at an international scientific meeting on influenza and as the 2006 Abel Wolman Distinguished Lecturer discussing water resources. He has been keynote speaker at a White House Conference on the Mississippi Delta, has appeared as a guest on shows on every broadcast network, from Meet the Press to Fox, is a frequent commentator on NPR and the BBC, has contributed to award-winning television documentaries, and he has written for such publications as Fortune, Time, Newsweek, The New York Times Sunday Magazine, Esquire, and The Washington Post.

His books have also received less formal recognition. In 2004 GQ named Rising Tide one of nine pieces of writing essential to understanding America; other writing on that list included Abraham Lincoln’s Second Inaugural Address and Martin Luther King’s “Letter from Birmingham Jail.” His first book, The Ambition and the Power, was cited by The New York Times as one of the eleven best books ever written about Washington and the Congress. His second book The Transformed Cell: Unlocking the Mysteries of Cancer, coauthored with Dr. Steven Rosenberg, was published in twelve languages. Before becoming a writer, Barry coached major college football. Currently Distinguished Visiting Scholar at the Center for Bioenvironmental Research of Tulane and Xavier Universities, he divides his time between New Orleans and Washington.

John Barry has a web site at: www.johnmbarry.com

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Storm Cunningham

Storm is Author of, The Restoration Economy (Berrett Koehler, November 2002) He is also the Executive Director, Revitalization Institute, the alliance for community renewal and natural resource restoration.  Revitalization Institute is a non-profit research and education organization supported by its members.  Its mission is "to advance integrated renewal of communities and natural resources worldwide".

He is also the CEO of Revitalization Strategies, Inc. RSI is a consulting firm that helps communities, counties, tribes, regions, and nations develop integrated revitalization strategies.  This approach creates rapid, sustainable economic growth based on restoring built, natural, and cultural assets with the involvement of all stakeholders. 

As the world's leading advocate on restorative development strategies and integrated revitalization policies, Storm specializes in being a generalist.  On any given day, he might be working with educators, fishery biologists, city planners, agronomists, watershed managers, transportation engineers, environmentalists, economic development organizations, real estate developers, GIS software firms, project managers, mayors, ecosystem restorationists, brownfields experts, historic preservationists, or catastrophe recovery agencies.

He is retained on a regular basis to speak or consult with federal agencies (such as Environment Canada), state/provincial governments, metropolitan areas & rural communities, and Fortune 500 companies.  [A recent example: The U.S. State Department (through the American Embassy in Warsaw) sponsored Storm's Polish speaking tour (and series of meetings with mayors) in 2006.]  Storm also lectures at leading academic institutions worldwide on a regular basis. He's currently working with Governor Brian Schweitzer of Montana to create a statewide restoration economy.

Storm Cunningham was—from 1996 to 2002—Director, Strategic Initiatives at the Construction Specifications Institute, a 50+ year-old association of 18,000 architects, engineers, contractors, and manufacturers.  They provide training and certification for construction specifiers and document specialists, and their formats are the standard for quality commercial construction in the U.S., Canada, and several other countries.  During this time, he was CSI's staff liaison to the U.S. Green Building Council.

He was previously CEO of a small manufacturing company that developed aquaculture systems based on a pioneering water purification technology invented at the Smithsonian Institution.

 A former Green Beret SCUBA medic, he is an avid SCUBA diver, motorcyclist, and amateur herpetologist.  

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