2016 ISLC Theme & Speakers
"Accidental Leadership: A New World Begins Within You!"
Why are you a leader? What has inspired you to be a leader? Understanding your reason for being a leader along with knowing your story will fuel your motivation to implement your vision for a new world.
While some will argue that leaders are born, this year’s keynote speaker, Wajahat Ali, is more likely to argue that leaders arise out of special events, tragedies and disasters. As a matter fact, he considers himself an “accidental activist.”
This year’s conference will give participants a chance to explore the experiences that lead them to become leaders. Furthermore, just as Wajahat has learned of the importance of social media as a means for entrepreneurs/leaders/activists to promote their cause/passion, participants will be in a position to apply this same concept for their story and values.
Wajahat Ali wears many hats. He is a lawyer, an award-winning playwright, a TV host, a consultant for the U.S. State Department but foremost is a National Correspondent, Political Reporter, and Social Media Expert for Al Jazeera America.
He wrote an award wining play entitled “The Domestic Crusaders” which focuses on a day in the life of a modern Muslim-Pakistani-American family as well as an investigative report: “Dear inc.: The Roots of the Islamophobia Network in America.”
“In 2012, Ali worked with the U.S. Department of State to design and implement the “Generation Change” leadership program to empower young social entrepreneurs. He initiated chapters in eight countries, including Pakistan and Singapore. He was honored as a “Generation Change Leader” by Sec. of State Clinton and as an “Emerging Muslim American Artist” by the Muslim Public Affairs Council.” (Lavin Agency)
Wajahat’s career started with little to no money, no power and networks. His blogs were his means to write about issues of personal interest but also to promote his articles to a broader audience. Ultimately, his blogs were his means of getting his foot in the door of many big name newspapers. “All humans have a story. Stories give us an identity; stories give us purpose; stories help us communicate our ideas, our values, and our beliefs. “ Wajahat’s personal story is a perfect example of how social media provide many means to get heard, to be more visible and bring one’s vision to a larger audience in a more effective and creative way.
[Information used with permission from the Lavin Agency]
Salorne McDonald has agreed to serve as advisor to the ISLC Committee, and as the moderator of the Conference. Many of you remember Salorne as the 2006 keynote speaker from Trinidad and Tobago who was kind enough to return in 2007 to lead Friday night activities and a workshop. With Salorne acting as advisor and moderator, we anticipate increased conference cohesion and energy.
Salorne was born in the rural eastern part of the twin island republic of Trinidad and Tobago. During his formative years Salorne was involved in youth clubs, debating competitions, and school student councils, which provided rich training for his current work, and helped to develop his gift of gab. Ardent work with the youth of his own nation and others around the world has given him an uncommon understanding of the life and development issues that young people face globally. Becoming involved in HIV and AIDS peer education sparked a special passion with Salorne, whose current position is the Regional Behavior Change Communication Manager with PSI/SFH in Trinidad. Salorne also works with the local YMCA and Trinidad Youth Council, providing education and leadership training to youth in his nation and abroad. A specialist in working with particularly vulnerable populations, he continues to aid in policy development as well as project planning and execution.