Meet Our Speakers!
Julia Bluhm, Keynote Speaker
Julia Bluhm is a fourteen-year-old who has been blogging for SPARK Summit, an organization that mobilizes girls to advocate against the sexualization of young women, for a little over a year. It wasn’t until she became involved with SPARK that she started to become passionate about the issues of how girls are portrayed in the media and the use of Photoshop in the media. After discussing it with the SPARK team, Julia volunteered to write a petition targeting Seventeen Magazine, asking them to Photoshop their models less. Since then, Julia and the SPARK team have been able to meet with the Editor-in-Chief of the magazine, get over 80,000 signatures on the petition, and get Seventeen to make a public promise that they won’t Photoshop their models’ bodies or faces. Now SPARK is doing another petition targeting Teen Vogue. Julia is still blogging for SPARK, and keeping her eyes open for anything else she wants to help change. She is so excited to be a speaker at the Proud2BMe Summit.
Roy Cui, Panelist
Roy Cui is a Los Angeles native, father of two boys and one girl, stepfather to one boy and one girl, and a professional image retoucher. For the last 16 years, he has been enhancing images for the covers of style and fashion magazines, beauty and fashion brands, and for world-renowned commercial and fine art photographers. After attending a screening of the film Miss Representation, Roy became more aware of how his media work contributes to how his daughters, girls, and women perceive themselves. He has recently started a blog on his mission to continue to work as a retoucher without killing women's self-esteem.
Gabi Gregg, Panelist
Gabi Gregg is the creater of the plus size fashion and personal style blog GABIFRESH (formerly "Young, Fat and Fabulous"), which she started in October 2008. Named one of the Ten Best Fashion Blogs by the Guardian, it has been featured in numerous publications including InStyle, Glamour, Teen Vogue, and Seventeen. She works as a freelance fashion stylist and writer, contributing regularly to Refinery29 and Vogue.it.
Lindy West, Panelist
Lindy West is a writer, humorist, and cultural critic based in Seattle, Washington. After seven years as a film reviewer and editor for The Stranger (Seattle's alternative newsweekly), she signed on as a Staff Writer at Jezebel.com, where she attempts to make social justic palatable by disguising it as entertainment. She specializes in angry, hilarious polemics on racism, sexism, and human bodies. Her work has also appeared in GQ, the Guardian, the Daily Telegraph, the New York Daily News, Vulture, Cracked.com, msnbc.com, and others.
Sara Ziff, Panelist
Sara Ziff is a fashion model, a documentary filmmaker, and a community organizer. Scouted at age 14 by a photographer in New York, Ziff rocketed to the top of the industry in her teens, walking for designers including Chanel and Marc Jacobs at all the world's fashion weeks while notching up magazine covers and ad campaigns for the likes of Calvin Klein and Tommy Hilfiger. Her and other models' experiences in the industry formed the basis for her acclaimed 2009 feature film, Picture Me, a video diary that sheds light on poor working conditions in this unregulated business. Following the release of Picture Me, Sara worked with the Fashion Law Institute at Fordham Law School to form the Model Alliance, a nonprofit that aims to give fashion models a voice in their work, and to promote fair labor standards throughout the fashion supply chain. Sara graduated with honors from Columbia University with a degree in political science.
Carolyn Gregoire, Panel Moderator
Carolyn Gregoire is the 22-year-old Associate Editor of HuffPost Teen, the Huffington Post’s section dedicated to young people and the issues that matter to them. Carolyn has written extensively on health, body image and eating disorders, and this February, her expose on Tumblr’s thinspo community sparked a national conversation, leading Tumblr, Pinterest and Instagram to change their content policies. She has been interviewed about eating disorders by The Today Show and Sirius XM show Broadminded, and has spoken on teens and media at TEDxYouth and at the 2011 Family Online Safety Initiative conference. She studied philosophy at McGill University in Montreal, where she concentrated on feminist theory and aesthetics. Her writing has appeared in undergraduate journals of philosophy and sociology, and has been featured in such publications as The McGill Tribune, BlackBook Magazine, seventeen.com, Betty Confidential, the Huffington Post and Huffington. Magazine.
Jenni Schaefer, Closing Speaker
Jenni Schaefer is an internationally known speaker and the best-selling author of Life Without Ed and Goodbye Ed, Hello Me, which offer readers a candid look into her recovery from an eating disorder. She has appeared on shows including Dr. Phil and Entertainment Tonight, and is recognized as an inspiration to people around the world who are working towards recovery. Jenni also uses her talent as a singer and songwriter to motivate and inspire those who are struggling with eating disorders. Chair of the Ambassadors Council of the National Eating Disorders Association, Jenni works to encourage awareness of eating disorders and to bring hope to those seeking to reclaim their lives.