RISE Student Leadership Conference Keynote Speakers 2018
Katie Eder is 18 years old and is the Executive Director of 50 Miles More and Co-Founder of the Future Coalition. After the March For Our Lives events ended on March 24th, she along with 39 other students from across Wisconsin came together to march 50 miles to Paul Ryan’s hometown. Because the march grew bigger and got more attention than ever expected, her team knew the momentum had to continue. They decided to launch the #50More in #50States campaign, a mass mobilization and activist training project that challenged youth leaders to coordinate 50 Mile More marches in their states. Katie is currently taking a gap year before attending Stanford in the fall of 2019.
Linda Brown is 20 years old. Linda is an artist who uses words and performance as a transformative exchange of energy. Linda is currently a junior at Iowa State University who majors in English Education as well as minoring in African American studies and Speech and Theatre. Linda Brown is also a member of RunDSM an organization who’s mission is to support and empower youth on their journey to become community based activists, providing them a platform to be heard.
Maddison Johnson is a graduate of Roosevelt High School and freshman at DMACC, working towards her degree in elementary education. In high school, she participated in Movement 515 poetry and graffiti programs, as well as traveling to Brave New Voices international spoken word festival two summers in a row. She is the current Des Moines Grand Slam Champion, and is on her third year of teaching half pints poetry.
Kevin Drahos is currently a senior at Linn-Mar High School and Iowa BIG located in Cedar Rapids. Since 2018, Kevin has been extremely active in politics and activism. He led the first Linn-Mar walkouts and organized two regional town halls which featured Parkland students and numerous politicians. This past summer, Kevin became the founder and President of March For Our Lives Iowa, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit dedicated to gun violence prevention and youth engagement. In addition to running the nonprofit, he also serves as regional liaison for National March For Our Lives. Kevin also dedicates his time to the State of Iowa Youth Advisory Council where he serves as Vice Chair. Through his position he works to elevate youth voice and advocate for legislation affecting Iowans. Kevin is extremely passionate about youth voice and getting peers involved in their communities.