Ms Gypsy Soul

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Jewel Pearson

Keynote Saturday 12pm: Tiny Houses: They weren't a Fad, So what's next?

After downsizing her homes and lifestyle over the course of 10 years, Jewel designed and built a beautiful 360 square foot tiny house in May 2015 that she calls home. Located in Charlotte, North Carolina, her urban and very chic tiny home was a big hit on HGTV’s shows “Tiny House, Big Living” and “How Are They Now” and was just recently featured on Apartment Therapy’s new video series #TheNewHomesmiths. 

Connect with Jewel at www.msgypsysoul.com 

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AARP Georgia Speakers Stage

Speaker Schedule

We are excited to have a number of subject matter experts coming to our event.   Speakers are brought to you by AARP of Georgia.


Saturday, May 11:

12pm-  Keynote- Jewel Pearson: Tiny Houses: They weren’t a fad, so what’s next?

1pm- Eric Kronberg- ADUs and Pocket Neighborhoods- Tour and Talk

2pm- Bonnie Cassimasima- The Psychology of Sparking Joy in our Spaces

2:30- Brandy Hall - Plant to provide, Making the most out of your land. 

3pm- Kay Sibetta - Livable Communities- Planning for a better community 

3:30- Coles Whalen - Building your Simple Life

4pm- Candace Kortovich- The Art of Aging in Place 


Sunday, May 12:

12pm- Keynote -Alexis Stephens & Christian Parsons- Lessons Learned from Traveling 55,000 Miles with a Tiny House

12:30- Coles Whalen -  Living in a Tiny House Community 

1pm- Eric Kronberg- ADUs and Pocket Neighborhoods- Tour and Talk

2pm- Robert Reed- Pocket Neighborhoods among us. 

2:30 - James Martin- Building an ADU in your backyard

3pm- Kay Sibetta - Livable Communities- Planning for a Better Community

3:30pm Nadia Giordani- Backyard Warrior- Tiny House Owner

4pm- Will and Kim from MicroLife- Whats new for tiny houses in GA. 

Interested in Speaking?

Are you a Subject matter expert and want to get your name out?  Are you ready to speak to downsizing, minimalism, sustainability and the tiny house movement?   Email- Will@MicroLifeInstitute.org

Speaker Bio's

Jewel Pearson

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Jewel D. Pearson, Ms. Gypsy Soul

Founder of Tiny House Trailblazers

After downsizing her homes and lifestyle over the course of 10 years, Jewel designed and built a beautiful 360 square foot tiny house in May 2015 that she calls home. Located in Charlotte, North Carolina, her urban and very chic tiny home was a big hit on HGTV’s shows “Tiny House, Big Living” and “How Are They Now” and was just recently featured on Apartment Therapy’s new video series #TheNewHomesmiths. 

A project manager and consultant by day, she’s also a tiny house advocate and community leader sharing her tiny living experiences, offering consulting services and teaching workshops throughout the country to encourage and assist others in achieving their tiny living dreams. Jewel is also the founder of Tiny House Trailblazers; a duo collaboration of powerful and uniquely talented women of color who together are a strong representation and voice for diversity and inclusion within the tiny house movement.   

Connect with Jewel at www.msgypsysoul.com.

Eric Kronberg

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Eric Kronberg is a zoning whisperer. He specializes in examining and demystifying zoning ordinances to find ways to make great projects possible and help others navigate through the zoning swamp. He uses his skills for the force of good as a principal at Kronberg Wall, leading the firm’s pre-development efforts by combining skills in planning, development, architecture, and zoning. Eric leverages this potent cocktail to chart the course of best possibilities for each site’s redevelopment. His work with Kronberg Wall, the Incremental Development Alliance, the Congress for the New Urbanism, the Georgia Conservancy, and the Atlanta Bicycle Coalition has solidified his stance as an advocate for walkable and bikable communities.
Eric has also been deeply committed to community redevelopment for the past several decades. He has served as a community leader in roles of Vice-President, President, Zoning Chair, and now Zoning Guru Emeritus for the Edgewood Neighborhood in Atlanta, GA.

ATLADUCO.com

Coles Whalen

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Coles Whalen began her professional career as a full-time musician. She grew her fan base the grassroots way, playing hundreds of shows across the country while living and traveling in a truck and camper. After spending so many wonderful years living small, she was eager to get involved in the simple living movement when it started to take off in the US. 

She joined EcoVentures as their Marketing Director in March 2015 and developed their National Tiny House Jamboree, an industry expo, which drew over 40,000 attendees. 

She now serves as the Marketing Director for Simple Life and has guided the company's brand development from conception through to the sellout of its first tiny house and cottage community. She continues to write and produces music, including several award-winning albums for children, and perform.

Tiny House Expedition

Alexis Stephens & Christian Parsons

SUNDAY KEYNOTE TALK -12pm

Lessons Learned from Traveling 55,000 Miles with a Tiny House

An intimate exploration of how the tiny house movement is radically redefining the American Dream, from the meaning of success to housing policy, and how crisscrossing North America in our DIY tiny house on wheels has transformed our lives. Presented by filmmakers, educators and advocates behind Tiny House Expedition, Alexis & Christian—owners of the world’s most traveled THOW!

Speaker Bios

Bonnie Cassimasima

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Bonnie Casamassima is the Principal and Founder of Interweave People Place. She is an Interior Design professional with expertise in Biophilic Design, sustainability and research- driven environments. Her support focuses on guiding commercial and residential clients through the process of understanding how their spaces can be designed to enhace their intentional quality of life.

Robert Reed

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Robert E. Reed, III, Director of Community and Residential Sustainability Services at Southface, a non-profit advocating for sustainable homes, workplaces, and communities for more than 40 years.  Robert leads Southface’s Urban Sustainability Practice working with teams developing sustainability initiatives in the cities around the region.  Most recently Community Sustainability Services developed a Sustainability Action Plan for Atlanta BeltLine Inc. and led development of Greenprint Midtown, an Eco-District overlay for Midtown Atlanta.  Robert represents Southface with the TransFormation Alliance promoting Equitable Transit Oriented Development.

Kay Sibetta

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Kay Sibetta joined AARP Georgia in July 2017. Prior to joining AARP, she served as the Volunteer and Human Relations Coordinator for Gwinnett County Government and launched Volunteer Gwinnett. As a seasoned community engagement and marketing professional, she leads AARP’s Financial Security and Livable Community initiatives in the Metro Atlanta area. She has also served as a marketing professional for national nonprofits and cultural institutions such as the American Heart Association, International Spy Museum, and the Maryland Zoo and National Aquarium.

She holds a bachelor’s degree in corporate communication from the University of Baltimore and is a graduate of Leadership Gwinnett Class of 2016.

Speaker Bios

Will Johnston

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The Executive Director of the MicroLife Institute, is a thought leader and innovator in the micro living world. Over the past four years, his organization has enabled policy change and brought acceptance of micro structures in the Southeast through events, projects and advocacy. His philosophy is allowing people to think outside the box by putting them in one.

Brandy Hall

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Brandy founded Shades of Green in 2004,  and for the past decade+, she has studied and taught permaculture design alongside some of the world's leading professionals. Moving from Asheville, NC, to Atlanta in 2011, she began to pollinate the Atlanta area with a whole-systems permaculture perspective, empowering individuals, businesses, and communities with practical tools to address some of the world’s most pressing challenges.

James Martin

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James Martin is a documentary filmmaker and co-founder of Four x Productions living in Atlanta, Georgia. Combining his love for well-made cocktails and filmmaking, his directorial debut The New Orleans Sazerac is an award-winning short documentary about the history of the famous Southern drink. It debuted online through The Bitter Southerner in 2017. His latest film, Being With Elephants, was filmed in the Maasai Mara region of Kenya in July 2018.



Martin is also a co-director of Stories Found, an initiative which helps emerging Kenyan filmmakers create and share unique stories to the region.

Speaker Bios

Nadia Giordani

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Nadia Giordani was born in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, WI.  She loves to travel, and to talk about health and living tiny. She holds a MS degree in Clinical Nutrition, from Life University in Atlanta.  She has always been passionate about health and decided to pursue a carrier in Nutrition in 2010.  Her passion came from experiencing improved health in her own life and in that of her daughter’s, when she changed their diet.  She strongly believes in “Let Food Be Thy Medicine”. 

Nadia joined the Tiny House movement in 2016, when she was faced with the reality of soon becoming an empty Nester.  The idea of living in a large house alone, was overwhelming.  In February of 2017, she and her daughter where featured on their own episode of “Tiny House Big Living”.  She looks forward to less mess and more travel.  Nadia currently lives in Atlanta, GA.

Candace Kortovich

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Bio coming soon! 

More Speakers Announced Soon!

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Make sure you come back and check out new speakers!