Join Michelle King and Fitzhugh Shaw for an evening of visionary non-fiction, collaboration, and writing the beloved community onto the heart.

They will be considering the following questions:

What’s a perfect world without a good story? How do we aspire to our best while loving our flaws? How can we practice ourselves into the future we all deserve? How might meditation play a role in building the societies that we want to inhabit?

Participants will explore belonging, interdependence, trees, making kin, sadness, play, sci-fi untopias, capitalism, and invite cultural icon Beyonce Knowles* and Wild Stallyns* to share the stage. (*Card subject to change)

Michelle King, Vice Chairperson of the Board of City of Bridges:

Learning Instigator. Love Activist. Transformer.

Michelle King is a learner first and foremost and as well as an instigator of learning. Professionally, she is a middle school teacher, aka a professional hostage. She learned and honed her craft in Mt. Lebanon with a fantastic crew of educators and students for over 16 years. In her quest to instigate courageous conversations about learning and children, she has ventured to The Environmental Charter School and their principles (Catalyst. Character. Collaboration. Commitment.). She co-taught Cultural Literacy, an integrated social sciences and English/Language Arts course. She is constantly seeking to create dynamic learning experiences and opportunities that inspire wonder, discovery, contradictions, frustrations, and joy. In making connections locally and globally, Michelle pushes the envelope and boundaries of where learning should occur for all students. Her current interests are in game-based learning, design, restorative justice, equity, social justice, and teacher empowerment. Through her partnerships with the Western Pennsylvania Writing Project, Carnegie Science Center, Hear Me, the Remake Learning ecosystem, ThinkZone Games, and other provocateurs, Michelle is helping to create equitable, empathetic, learning experiences for all Pittburghers.

Current Conundrums: How might we create empathetic institutions that remind us of our humanity? How might we re-design for equity and social justice in and out of school learning? How might we design learning institutions to build connections? How might we allow those connections help us re-see the worlds we inhabit? How might we embrace silence in our lives?

Fitzhugh Shaw:

Fitzhugh Shaw was the Director of Shambhala Pittsburgh. He is a meditation instructor and teacher in the Shambhala Buddhist tradition. He studies and writes about food justice and the political economy of modern agriculture, along with food-based community organizing.

He lives in Braddock, Pennsylvania with his wife and daughter.