Meet, learn, and exchange ideas on Gun Violence Reduction and Mental Health

  • December 14, 2013 · 9:00 AM

All Attendees Must Register on Eventbrite.

A year after the tragic events that happened at Sandy Hook Elementary on December 14th, 2012, we are still heartbroken. In the spirit of coming together to find technology solutions to gun violence, we invite you to participate in the Highground Hackers Symposium for Sandy Hook: Gun Violence Reduction & Mental Health on December 14th at the Twilio Headquarters in SF

This is a unique opportunity to see demonstrations of technologies developed by the Highground Hackers, and to meet and listen to experts in the field of Mental Health, Neuroscience, Government, Education, NGO's, Business, Technology, and Investment who are all working together to find solutions to the gun violence epidemic sweeping this nation. 

Ron Conway


Mayor Ed Lee

 We are honored to have Ron Conway opening the event with his thoughts on what tech can do for this space.  San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee will be sharing his thoughts on how cities can best help.  The California Institute of Integral Studies, and an amazing group of other experts, will offer its expertise in the field of mental health, education, neuroscience, big data analytics, government, and more.

Some of the topics that will be presented:Can mass shooters be stopped?The neuroscience of human behaviorHacking for mental wellnessPredicting crime through mathematical modelingHuman flourishingThe mind of a perpetratorAnd more...Joe Subbiondo

Joe Subbiondo

Joseph L. Subbiondo, president of CIIS since June 1999, has an accomplished background in both administration and academics. He brings a 30-year history of achievement in higher education, including appointments on several international academic committees; and he has been active on many accreditation teams for the Western Association of Schools and Colleges.

Subbiondo’s publications include extensive writings on the history of linguistics. Among his publications are studies of the history of philosophical language, 17th Century British educational reform, and the relation between language and the evolution of consciousness. Prior to coming to CIIS, he served as dean of the School of Liberal Arts at St. Mary’s College of California; vice president for academic affairs at the University of the Pacific; dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Santa Clara University; and as a professor of English and linguistics at four universities.

Dr. Craig Chalquist, "From Violence to Peace: The Inside Story"

Craig Chalquist

Craig Chalquist, PhD is department chair of East-West Psychology at the California Institute of Integral Studies in San Francisco and adjunct faculty at Pacifica Graduate Institute, where he teaches ecopsychology, and at John F. Kennedy University, where he launched the world’s first Certificate in Ecotherapy. He also worked as a therapist for six years specializing in the treatment of violent men.  He is the author of several books, including those of the Animate California Series and Terrapsychology: Reengaging the Soul of Place, editor of Rebearths: Conversations with a World Ensouled, and co-editor of Ecotherapy: Healing with Nature in Mind. His areas of professional interest include depth psychology, ecopsychology, mythology, history, ecoresilient communities, theoretical and qualitative research, phenomenology, and complexity science. He manages the Deep Educator Network at LinkedIn, and his website is

Dr. Meg Jordan, "Human Flourishing"

Meg Jordan

Department Chair of Integrative Health Studies and Somatic Psychology at CIIS. A clinical medical anthropologist, an award-winning international health journalist, behavioral medicine specialist, RN, author, and President of Global Medicine Enterprises, Inc.

Meg explores the latest findings from neuroscience and coaching psychology in a fully-embodied, conscious way in order to achieve essential well-being and happiness. She is an information portal for new research on social belonging, connection and relationships as the cornerstones of mental and physical health.

She can share new findings on emotional resiliency and agility to restore brain-mind-heart-spirit integrity in our relationships.

Dr. George Mohler, "Open Gun Crime Data and Predictive Policing"

George Mohler

George Mohler is Chief Scientist at PredPol, Inc and Assistant Professor of Mathematics and Computer Science at Santa Clara University.  Prior to joining the faculty at Santa Clara University he was CAM Assistant Adjunct Professor of Mathematics at UCLA from 2008 to 2010.  He received a B.S. in Mathematics from Indiana University and his Ph.D. in Mathematics from the University of California Santa Barbara.  His research on crime modeling and predictive policing has been featured in the New York Times, the Economist, TIME, Popular Science, and other international news outlets.

Dr. Adam Gazzaley, "Video Games as Behavioral Modifiers"

Adam Gazzaley

Dr. Adam Gazzaley obtained an M.D. and a Ph.D. in Neuroscience at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York, completed clinical residency in Neurology at the University of Pennsylvania, and postdoctoral training in cognitive neuroscience at UC Berkeley. He is the founding director of the Neuroscience Imaging Center at the UC San Francisco, an Associate Professor in Neurology, Physiology and Psychiatry, and Principal Investigator of a cognitive neuroscience laboratory. His laboratory studies neural mechanisms of perception, attention and memory, with an emphasis on the impact of distraction and multitasking on these abilities. His unique research approach utilizes a powerful combination of human neurophysiological tools, including functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), electroencephalography (EEG) and transcranial stimulation (tCS).

Chris Cheng, "Gun Violence, A People Problem"

Chris Cheng

After working at Google in Mountain View, California for five years as a Program Manager in Google Enterprise and, Chris competed in, and won the History Channel’s Top Shot marksmanship competition. Having no prior military, law enforcement, or firearms training, Chris trained himself through YouTube, the web, and books, to beat seventeen competitors which included military veterans, law enforcement officer, olympic shooters, and hunters. In addition to the title of “Top Shot,” Chris won $100,000 and a professional marksmanship contract with Bass Pro Shops. He quit Google in 2012 to pursue a brand new career. He has an upcoming book on leadership, personal and professional development, and marksmanship, which is titled “Shoot to Win,” and also has a TV show in development. Chris attended UCLA and the Monterey Institute of International Studies where he studied Political Science and International Policy, respectively. He also holds an Advanced Project Management Certification from Stanford University. Chris is a Lifetime member of the National Rifle Association and works closely with them on both the national and state levels to promote Second Amendment rights. Dr. Richard Buggs, "Can Mass Shooters Really be Stopped?"

Richard Buggs

In 1996 he earned his PhD in Clinical Psychology from CIIS and has a BA from San Diego State University. He is a licensed psychologist and maintains a private practice in psychotherapy. Buggs previously served on the board of directors for Haight-Ashbury Psychological Services and on the board of the California Psychology Internship Council.

Ashok Narasimhan

Ashok Narasimhan

Ashok founded Prio Inc. and served as its Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. Mr. Narasimhan served as the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer from early 1996 until Prio’s merger with InfoSpace, and was subsequently the Chief Operating Officer of InfoSpace. Prior to this, he served as the Head of Worldwide Marketing, Business Development Engineering and other functions at VeriFone. Mr. Narasimhan was the Founding President of Wipro Infotech and Wipro Systems. He has been a Director of India Limited since June 25, 2002. Mr. Narasimhan serves as a Director at Avendus Advisors Private Ltd., Tarang Software Technologies Pvt. Ltd., iCelerate, Tarang Technologies as well as Global Internet Ventures. He sits on the Boards of several companies in areas as diverse as Internet portals, investment banking, software development and mobile platforms. Mr. Narasimhan served as a Director of iSeva Inc. He served as a Director of InfoSpace. He holds a Post Graduate Diploma in Management from the Indian Institute of Management and a Bachelors Degree in Physics from Madras University.

John Weiss, "Indirect Therapy - Hacking for Mental Health"

John Weiss

John Weiss is Director of the Bayview BOOM, a non-profit technology youth mentoring organization in a disadvantaged, violence-prone community in San Francisco, Bayview Hunters Point. John’s tech mentoring work integrates his formal education in Child Development, Psychology, Behavioral Biology, and Public Mental Health at the University of Massachusetts and Hampshire College, and personal encounters with mental illness. John grew up with a screwdriver in one hand, and a drumstick in the other. As a teen, he disassembled alarm clocks to find out how they work, and taught himself computer programming. His mentoring work is based on the idea that emotional wellness is created by healthy social relationships, and that violence can be prevented by cultivating problem-solving behaviors.

Dr. Denise Boston

Denise Boston

Dr. Denise Boston uses evidence-based art therapy to help children overcome trauma and socioeconomic disadvantage. EXA therapy supports social and emotional learning by enabling children to acquire the knowledge and skills they need to recognize and manage their emotions, demonstrate caring and concern for others, establish positive and cooperative relationships, make responsible decisions, and constructively handle challenging situations. Considerable research suggests that children’s participation in expressive arts therapy activities including dance, music, drama, writing, and artistic play positively correlates with higher academic performance and self-esteem, lessened incidence of dangerous and inappropriate behaviors, and more effective posttraumatic recovery.

Dr. Francis Kong MD, "The Journey Outside the Classroom"

Francis Kong

Francis will talk about “The Journey Outside the Classroom”, covering the importance of one’s own life, the legacy you hope to leave behind, and three key values – Pride in your work, knowing your passion, and giving back and helping others.

After graduating from UC Berkeley, earning his MS at the University of San Francisco, and moonlighting as a video game reviewer and designer, Francis attended the Royal College of Surgeons in Dublin, Ireland.

Francis served as a lead healthcare technology and business consultant to operations such as Christus Health’s Strategic Planning Sector and Kaiser Permanente’s Innovation Center. In 2012, he founded the talent recruiting company, Edge Interns, which recruits motivated, focused, and team-oriented students in the areas of healthcare, business, and technology. Partnering with companies such as Salesforce and Health 2.0, he furthers the mission of helping students take pride in their work, find their passions, and help others along their life journey.

Dr. Frank Echenhofer, "Speculation about Future Self-Regulation Technologies"

Frank Echenhofer

Frank Echenhofer received his Ph.D. in Developmental Psychology from Temple University in 1985. He has been a clinical research associate at Temple University and has been in private practice since 1985. His specializations, which bridge east-west psychology, are in the general areas of eastern and western comparative psychology, philosophy, and psychophysiology.

He has done research in exceptional and deficit attention (ADHD, mild brain injury, single-pointed concentration and visualization meditation), EEG biofeedback for normalizing the EEG associated with attention and arousal level problems, and EEG assisted self-regulation methods for creativity, meditation facilitation, imagery self-regulation, and experimental transpersonal psychology.

Frank has conducted research with Tibetan Buddhist meditators in India and meditators from the United States. He has lectured and written articles on the physiology and phenomenology of meditation, the integration of developmental and transpersonal psychologies, comparative biological psychology, and Eastern psychology.

Kakul Srivastava, "Cure Violence: A Community Approach to Violence"

kakul Srivastava

Kakul Srivastava is CEO and co-founder of Tomfoolery, a mobile-first startup dedicated to building beautiful, useful apps for people who work. Over her 15 year career, Kakul has helped build some of the most loved consumer products — Adobe’s Photoshop line, Flickr, Yahoo! Messenger, and Yahoo! Mail. Kakul’s career at Yahoo! led her to become one of the top female executives in the company. As the VP, Product for the Communities & Communications Division that included Y!Mail, Y!Messenger, and Flickr products, she looked after a global monthly user base of over 500M people.
Kakul also believes passionately that Violence can not only be reduced, it can be eliminated, and as such as a very proud Co-Chair of the International Board for Cure Violence. Kakul has two children and also serves on the Board of her children’s preschool, Little School, as well as helps their elementary school, MCDS, develop excellence in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math). Kakul is a graduate of MIT with a BS in Mechanical Engineering, and also holds an MBA from the UC, Berkeley Haas School of Business.

Rebecca Elliot

Rebecca Elliot

A San Francisco native, Rebecca spent 15 years with 3M Company, Electronic Products Division, known for its technology innovation. During her tenure, she focused primarily on product development and new business development. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration, and a master’s degree in Consciousness Studies combining strong business acumen with an understanding of human psychological constructs. She provides executive coaching and consulting services through Elliott Coaching. In her time off, she loves the outdoors, and can be found hiking around the bay area hills, or near the ocean, and has an affinity for farmers’ markets.

Join or login to comment.

  • gary

    I am blown away by all the talent, genius and knowledge represented by the above luminaries, and must confess that I would feel so honored to hear from any of them that might be interested in combining forces with our work pioneering technology to help optimize couple relationships, our most important adult relationship, especially for the masses who cannot afford or will not trust a therapist (yet). Hope to hear from ya, gary (at) couplewise**com

    December 13, 2013

  • Marcos

    I'm sorry can't make the meetup tomorrow... but hopefully will be able to for the next one...

    December 13, 2013

  • Stephen R

    Looking to meet the other 'Compassion Technologists' interested in starting to hack after the speakers are finished on Sat . . .

    December 10, 2013

  • Lydia S.

    I'm very sorry I'll miss this but I'll be out of town.

    December 10, 2013

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