MEET OUR FOUR DYNAMIC SPEAKERS
Ari C.Greis, D.O., Rothman Institute of Thomas Jefferson University
Dr. Ari Greis is a board-certified physician who specializes in the non-operative treatment of spinal and musculoskeletal disorders. He is the director of the Medical Cannabis Department at Rothman Institute and is a Senior Fellow in the Institute of Emerging Health Professions and the Lambert Center for the Study of Medicinal Cannabis and Hemp. He is interested in the treatment of chronic pain with cannabis as an alternative to opioids.
Dr. Greis is a Clinical Assistant Professor of Rehabilitation Medicine at Thomas Jefferson University who has published numerous research articles, textbook chapters, and continues to teach and lecture to residents and medical students. Dr. Greis served as the chief resident at the University of Washington in Seattle and is fellowship trained in sports and spine rehabilitation. He performs fluoroscopic guided spine injections, ultrasound guided peripheral joint injections, trigger point injections, and electrodiagnostic testing.
Douglas Jerolmack, PhD, Geophysicist, University of Pennsylvania
Professor, Graduate Chair, Graduate Group member, Physics and Astronomy and Applied Mathematics and Computational Science
PhD: Geophysics, MIT, 2006
BSc: Environmental Engineering, Drexel University, 2001
Experimental geophysics, with a focus on geomorphology (the "science of scenery"). My research focuses on the spatial and temporal evolution of patterns that emerge at the interface of fluid and sediment on Earth and planetary surfaces. Our group uses laboratory experiments, combined with field work and theory, to elucidate the minimum number of ingredients that are required to explain physical phenomena. Particular foci include: granular physics of fluid-driven (water and wind) sediment transport; landform dynamics including dunes, river channels, deltas and fans; stochastic and nonlinear transport processes; and landscape response to dynamic boundary conditions such as climate.
Jane Golden, Executive Director, Mural Arts Philadelphia
Jane Golden, Executive Director, has been the driving force of Mural Arts Philadelphia (Mural Arts), overseeing its growth from a small city agency into the nation’s largest public art program and a model for community development and restorative justice across the country and around the globe. Under Golden’s direction, Mural Arts has created over 4,000 works of public art through innovative collaborations with community-based organizations, city agencies, nonprofit organizations, schools, the private sector, and philanthropies.
Initially hired as a young artist by former Mayor Wilson Goode to help combat the graffiti crisis plaguing the city, Golden reached out to graffiti writers to help turn their destructive energies into creative ones. In the process, she recognized the raw artistic talent among the graffiti writers, and she provided them with fresh opportunities to channel their creativity and ideas into mural-making. The murals themselves transformed city neighborhoods which had long suffered from years of neglect and hardship. In 1996, Mural Arts was reorganized under the City of Philadelphia Department of Recreation, and Golden was put in place as its director. At this time, she established the Philadelphia Mural Arts Advocates, a nonprofit organized to raise funds and provide support to the program.
In the decades since, Golden has connected the process of muralism to a multitude of community and public outcomes. In partnership with a range of city agencies, she has developed groundbreaking and rigorous art education, restorative justice, and behavioral health programs that serve young people, youth and adult offenders at area prisons and detention centers, and individuals suffering from trauma, mental illness, and addiction, respectively. These programs have made it possible for thousands to experience and witness the power of art to connect young people to their communities and to future opportunities, to break the cycle of crime and violence, and to bring about healing in individuals and communities.
In addition to developing innovative programs, Golden has overseen a series of increasingly complex, ambitious, and award-winning public art projects, including How Philly Moves, an 85,000-square-foot mural at the Philadelphia International Airport; Light Drift, an interactive light project in and along the Schuylkill River, created by a team from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology; A Love Letter for You, a narrative series of 50 text-based images visible from the Market-Frankford El, developed by Stephen Powers; and Philly Painting, a collaboration with Dutch artists Dre Urhahn and Jeroen Koolhaas, which sought to catalyze economic development by engaging community members and businesses in the transformation of 60 buildings along a struggling commercial corridor. Open Source, a citywide public art exhibition in 2015, was Mural Arts’ largest undertaking yet, as Golden and staff collaborated with curator Pedro Alonzo to bring 13 trailblazing artists to Philadelphia for groundbreaking projects that illuminated the city’s diverse public identity. In 2017, Golden oversaw the production of Monument Lab, a public art and history project from curators Paul M. Farber and Ken Lum that started a citywide conversation about history, memory, and our collective future; 20+ dynamic contemporary artists, working in Philadelphia and around the world, created temporary monuments around the city for a nine-week-long exhibition that engaged over 100,000 people.
Sought after nationally and internationally as an expert on urban transformation through art, Golden has received numerous awards for her work, including the Philadelphia Award, the Hepburn Medal from the Katharine Houghton Hepburn Center at Bryn Mawr College, the Visionary Woman Award from Moore College of Art, the 2012 Governor’s Award for Innovation in the Arts, a Distinguished Daughter of Pennsylvania Award from former Governor Edward G. Rendell, the Adela Dwyer/St. Thomas Peace Award from Villanova University, LaSalle University’s Alumni Association’s Signum Fidei Medal, an Eisenhower Fellowships Award, Philadelphia Magazine’s Trailblazer Award, the Philadelphia Public Relations Association’s 2016 Gold Medal Award, and a Woman of Distinction Award from the Philadelphia Business Journal. In 2018, she received the Anne d’Harnoncourt Award for Artistic Excellence from the Arts + Business Council of Greater Philadelphia, and the Dare to Understand Award from the Interfaith Center of Greater Philadelphia. She has also co-authored two books about the murals in Philadelphia and co-edited a third, Mural Arts @ 30 (Temple University Press, 2014), published on the occasion of Mural Arts’ 30th anniversary. Golden is referenced in publications around the world, and is an adjunct professor at the University of Pennsylvania. She holds a Master of Fine Arts from the Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University, and degrees in Fine Arts and Political Science from Stanford University. In addition, Golden has received honorary PhDs from Swarthmore College, Philadelphia’s University of the Arts, Widener University, Arcadia University, LaSalle College, Haverford College, and most recently, Rosemont College, Villanova University, St. Joseph’s University, and Drexel University
Brian Sims, PA State Representative, 182nd Legislative District
State Representative Brian K. Sims is a distinguished policy attorney and civil rights advocate from Center City Philadelphia. The former staff counsel for policy and planning at the Philadelphia Bar Association, he recently stepped down as both the president of the board of directors of Equality Pennsylvania and as chairman of Gay and Lesbian Lawyers of Philadelphia (GALLOP). He also has extensive experience as a guest lecturer.
He is dedicated to making Philadelphia safer, strengthening and protecting public education, preserving services for seniors and other vulnerable Pennsylvanians, making affordable health care more available, expanding civil rights for all Pennsylvanians, preserving our environment while investing in alternative energy, creating jobs and cleaning up Harrisburg.
During his time at the Bar Association, Sims worked with attorneys, legislators and community organizations on issues ranging from gender and pay inequity to environmental regulation. A member of the national campaign board of the Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund until August 2011, Sims lectures regularly about the policy and legal challenges facing the LGBT civil rights movement and is a regular lecturer at the Center for Progressive Leadership. He is the first out LGBT member of the Pennsylvania General Assembly.
Before his time at the Bar Association, he practiced law as a disability attorney representing disabled professionals. He also worked as the senior law clerk at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Washington office, where he focused on state and municipal compliance and enforcement.
He earned a bachelor of science degree from Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania and a juris doctor degree in international and comparative law from the Michigan State University College of Law.
In 2000, Sims, the son of two retired Army lieutenant colonels, came out to his football team after helping to lead them to the Division II national championship game as their captain. He remains the only former NCAA football captain to have ever come out, and is one of the most notable collegiate athletes to do so in any sport.
Today he continues to serve on the GLSEN Sports Advisory Council, is a contributor to The Advocate magazine, and has written for The National Jurist, The New Jersey Law Journal, The Legal Intelligencer, Law.com, The Philadelphia Bar Reporter, MD News magazine, HRC Back Story, OutSports.com, Yahoo Sports and Compete magazine.
As a state legislator, he is honored to represent the neighborhoods of Pennsylvania's 182nd District, which includes part or all of: Rittenhouse, Fitler Square, Logan Square, Midtown/Gayborhood, Washington Square West, Bella Vista, Hawthorne, Fairmount, Queen Village, East Passyunk, Spring Garden and Market East.