IDEA Café Speakers

Katie Samson is an educator, disability self-advocate, and storyteller who actively engages in Philadelphia arts and culture. She is the Director of Education at Art-Reach. As the current Director of Education at Art-Reach, an Art Service organization based in greater Philadelphia, Katie provides professional development opportunities through an annual conference, collaborative forums, and trainings and consulting around topics of inclusion, accessibility, program adaptation, and inclusive design. She is a certified Aging-in-Place Specialists, a consultant on universal design in architectural and education and previously taught Disability Studies at West Chester University. She serves on the Advisory Board of Thomas Jefferson University, Department of Occupational Therapy and the Board of Director's for World CAFÉ Live and Team Sunshine Performance Corporation. Katie's enjoy adaptive sports, birding, gardens, live music, and storytelling.

Colah B. Tawkin is the juggernaut creator, producer, and voice behind the renowned Black in the Garden podcast. Using her extensive horticultural knowledge, her endless love for Black people, and her keen ability to teach in a spirit of joy and kinship, she has built a village of 'Soil Cousins' that have come to not only love, but trust her voice. By amplifying Black voices and bringing the marginalized into the center, Colah is on a mission to explore the past, present and future of Black people with plants. Her aim is to grow and foster village-building, education, and healing via plant media. And she'll make you laugh while she does it, too. 

Rev. Dr. Randy Woodley, PhD is a farmer, activist/scholar, distinguished speaker, teacher and wisdom keeper. Randy was raised near Detroit, Michigan and is a Cherokee descendent recognized by the United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians in Oklahoma. Dr. Woodley, with his wife Edith, are co-sustainers of Eloheh Indigenous Center for Earth Justice and Eloheh Farm & Seeds, a regenerative teaching center and farm in Yamhill, Oregon. His books include: Becoming Rooted: One Hundred Days of Reconnecting with Sacred Earth and The Harmony Tree: A Story of Healing and Community.

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