Opening Keynote


Virgie Tovar
Author and Activist

Bio: Virgie Tovar is an author, activist and one of the nation's leading experts and lecturers on fat discrimination and diet culture. She is the founder of Babecamp and started the hashtag campaign #LoseHateNotWeight. Tovar edited the ground-breaking anthology Hot & Heavy: Fierce Fat Girls on Life, Love and Fashion (Seal Press, November 2012). She holds a Master's degree in Human Sexuality with a focus on the intersections of body size, race and gender. Virgie has been featured by the New York Times, Tech Insider, Al Jazeera and NPR. She lives in San Francisco.


Keynote Title: Diet Culture & the War Against Women

Keynote Description: Dieting is far older than Weight Watchers or even Richard Simmons. The story of modern day diet culture begins 200 years ago with a man named Reverend Sylvester Graham, inventor of the graham cracker and founder of the Dietary Reform Movement. As the current War on Obesity mounts, the food on our plates and the size of our waists have become part of the public domain. In this lecture, Virgie Tovar, editor of Hot & Heavy: Fierce Fat Girls on Life, Love and Fashion (Seal Press, 2012), offers an in-depth discussion of diet culture and fatphobia with an eye to the intersections of race, gender, and class.


Lunch Keynote

Franchesca Ramsey
Writer, Actress and Video Blogger

Bio: Franchesca Ramsey is an actress, writer and video blogger based out of New York City. With over 200k subscribers on her two YouTube channels, she produces original videos which include song parodies, impersonations and original characters along with socially conscious and topical comedy sketches. In 2012 her viral video "Sh*t White Girls Say...to Black Girls" was viewed over 5 million times in just 5 days, garnering coverage on MSNBC, ABC, Ebony Magazine, The Daily Mail and the Anderson Cooper talk show to name a few. Most recently she was a writer and contributor for the Nightly Show with Larry Wilmore on Comedy Central. Today she's the host and head writer for the award winning web series, "MTV Decoded."


Keynote Title: Your Powerful Online Voice: Social Media for Social Change

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