ComNet18 San Francisco
ComNet18 was one of our most memorable gatherings. While the conference is over, the learning continues. We have assembled notes, videos, podcasts and transcripts for you to use (and share!) so that the knowledge showcased in San Francisco can continue to have value going forward.
Listen to the audio podcasts on iTunes.
ComNet18 audio, videos, and transcripts were graciously sponsored by our friends at The Colorado Health Foundation. Breakout Session notes were made possible by generous support from the Kalliopeia Foundation.
We hosted Emmy-winning, show-creating, executive-producing, writer, director, and actress Lena Waithe in conversation with Joshua Johnson, Host of NPR’s 1A. In a wide-ranging conversation Waithe and Johnson talked about race, representation, and the power of truth and storytelling to change perceptions.
The inaugural Clarence B. Jones Impact Award was marked by a case study keynote from Truth Initiative’s Eric Asche. Asche spoke about Truth’s successful communications efforts to eradicate youth smoking.
David Frum, former George W. Bush speechwriter and Senior Editor of The Atlantic, spoke about the current state of our politics and communications, civic responsibility, and where we go from here.
Fred Blackwell, CEO of The San Francisco Foundation led a discussion with Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf, KQED’s Metro Reporter Sandhya Dirks, Angela Jenkins of Kaiser Permanente, Caitlyn Fox of the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, and Jennifer Martinez of PICO California on the housing and homelessness challenges facing the Bay Area.
Cecile Richards, former President of Planned Parenthood, spoke passionately about activism, storytelling, narrative shift, fighting the good fight, and lessons learned from her mother, the late Texas Gov. Ann Richards.
Jeremy Heimans, Co-Founder and CEO of Purpose and Henry Timms, Executive Director of 92nd Street Y spoke about “new power” frameworks and how social good communicators can leverage this way of thinking.
- Lena Waithe, In Conversation with Joshua Johnson
- Eric Asche
- David Frum, In Conversation with Lara Setrakian
- Cecile Richards
- Housing and Homelessness in San Francisco
- Jeremy Heimans and Henry Timms
We introduced a Second Stage at ComNet18 where we hosted smaller, more in depth conversations.
- Catching the Wave: Chad Nelsen, CEO of the Surfrider Foundation and Jade Floyd, Vice President of Communications at the Case Foundation and Vice Chair of The Communications Network, unpack how a powerful communications strategy helped the Surfrider Foundation mobilize a local grassroots effort to “Save Trestles”.
- Live Stories Change Lives – A Storytelling Showcase: Tracey Segarra, Host/Producer of “Now You’re Talking!” A Storytelling Show, Corey Rosen, Writer/Marketing Executive at the Tippett Studio, Dana Merwin, Program Officer at the International Documentary Association, and Meg Ferrill share intimate, hilarious, and heartbreaking personal stories that will leave you in tears and lift you up with joy.
We hosted 19 breakout sessions with specialized tracks focused on journalism and media today; storytelling and narratives; and diversity, equity and inclusion. Below you will find useful notes on each breakout session reviewed by breakout session presenters.
Storytelling and Narratives
- Lessons From the Frontiers of Data Storytelling presented by Catherine Hinrichsen of Seattle University’s Project on Family Homelessness, Christena Coutsoubos of Building Changes, and Reiny Cohen of Washington Low Income Housing Alliance
- 5 Keys to Video Storytelling: How to Empower Your Team to Create Videos with Their Cellphones presented by Jessica Kizorek of Eyes On Your Mission
- What’s In Our Way?: What Research Tells Us About What We Are All Up Against presented by Shaun Adamec of Adamec Communications, and Nat Kendall-Taylor of FrameWorks Institute
Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
- The Multiplier Effect! How Small Investments in Communications Can Make Exponential Impact in Organizations and Communities presented by Selma Caal, Ph.D., and Danielle M. Reyes of The Crimsonbridge Foundation
- Messaging Beyond Jargon: Creating Equity in Social Change Communications presented by Taryn Fort of The Colorado Health Foundation, Zach Hochstadt of Mission Minded, and Jehan Benton-Clark of Colorado Health Foundation
- Asset Framing: The Other Side of the Story presented by Trabian Shorters of BMe Community
Journalism and Media Today
- Philanthropy Can’t Save Journalism, But It Could Do More to Help presented by LaMonte Guillory of LOR Foundation, David Rousseau of Kaiser Family Foundation, Sally Mudd of California Health Care Foundation, and Vincent Stehle of Media Impact Funders
- How to Create Your Own News Bureau presented by Jon Barrett of Bloomberg Cities, and Bill Nichols of Freedman Consulting
- How “Fake News” and Disinformation Can Affect Your Cause – And How to Counter It presented by Anusha Alikhan of John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, Alex Cole of IREX, Brian Wesolowski of Center for Democracy and Technology, and Kelly Born of Hewlett Foundation
- Speaking with One Voice: How 30 Foundations Collaborated on Strategic Communications presented by Kristen Mack of John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, Phil Zepeda of McCormick Foundation, Tracy Kremer of Polk Bros. Foundation, and Kayce Ataiyero of Joyce Foundation
- Embrace the Green, Not the Wash: How Companies are Communicating on Social Good presented by Jill Schwartz of World Wildlife Fund, Kyle Rudzinski of Levi Strauss & Co., Kim House of Pottery Barn, and Sam Arons of Lyft
- 110 Degrees in the Shade: Using the Heat of Public Controversy to Power the Mission presented by Doug Root, Kitty Julian, and Khalif Ali of The Pittsburgh Foundation
- Podcasting for Social Change presented by Will Coley of The Opportunity Agenda/Aquifer Media, and Davia Nelson and Nikki Silva of The Kitchen Sisters
- Like Old Denim Jeans, Email is Always in Style presented by Robin Sidel of Kaiser Family Foundation, Jason Tomassini of Atlantic 57, and Donna Norton of Moms Rising
- If a Tree Falls in a Forest…: How to Understand Your Audience and Make Sure Stories Never Go Unheard presented by Sruthi Sadhujan of Hyperakt, and Scott Hechinger, Esq. of Brooklyn Defender Services
- Empower Your Audience By Handing Them the Mic presented by Jon Mitchell, and Dominique Debucquoy-Dodley of Burning Man Project
- Discovering Millennials: Findings From a National Science Media Survey presented by Danielle Dana of Science Friday, Sue Ellen McCann of KQED, Asheley Landrum of College of Media and Communication, Texas Tech University, and Fred Jacobs of Jacobs Media Strategies
- Editorial Wishes and Calendar Dreams: Systems of the Proactive and Productive presented by Julia Levy of Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation
- Augmented Reality Keeps Rivers Free-Flowing presented by Griselda Serra of One Big Robot, and Catherine Blancard of World Wildlife Fund
Check out our ComNet18 album on Flickr to see over 700 photos of you, your colleagues, our speakers, and more.