Just some of the amazing humans bringing the New Story Festival to life...
CONNECT TEAM &
Kristine's passion is to curate hospitable spaces and experiences where meaningful connections happen that become pivotal moments in someone's life: of hope, goodness, and feeling heard & loved. She is a connector, learner, empathic listener, teacher, event facilitator, coach and strategic partner in creating pathways that make big dreams possible.
Barry is a local community organizer who found his way to Austin 3 years ago after spending most of his adult life in Connecticut and other parts of the Northeast. He has a passion for social justice in its many forms, and continues to identify ways to make an impact within his community by motivating and guiding individuals to work together. Barry most recently worked with the Austin Justice Coalition as their Outreach & Engagement Director.
Tamisha is a PhD student at Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, CA studying Theology, Culture and Ethics. She works with several arts organizations including Listen Los Angeles (a listening project featuring an all African American cast reflecting on the current state of the country through art), Level Ground (engaging empathy across difference), and ARC Art | Religion | Culture. She also co-hosts a podcast entitled Why We're Friends.
Celia Alario plays at the intersection of social justice communications, culture shaping and movement building. She’s exploring how communities can address environmental injustice and climate disruption while deepening our democratic experiment—all with balance, integrity, grace and a joyful heart. Count on her for chocolate, glitter, poodles and transformational confabs.
Tyler McCabe is a gay writer living in Portland, Oregon. His writing covers pop culture, family, trauma, and healing, and has been honorably noted by Best American Essays. He's currently working on a speculative novel. Tyler specializes in fostering holistic, diverse communities through events and educational opportunities, and currently serves as Chapter Manager at EO Portland. He tweets @tylermccabe.
Katie Jo Suddaby
Rev. Katie Jo Suddaby is a pastor, speaker, consultant, and artist from Rochester, NY, working at the intersection of art, spirituality, and social justice. She is one of the few people in the Western hemisphere who create sand mandala art - have learned the technique from Tibetan lamas and Buddhist monks in Nepal.
Steph loves Austin, country music, and a good dancehall. He spends most of his time playing music and golf, dancing at White Horse, or hanging with his 7-year-old kid whom he calls Young Money.
Melissa is an innovative educator, educational consultant, and research analyst for the Austin Independent School District.
STEPHEN ROACH KNIGHT
Steve is the co-founder of Transform Network, where he serves on the board and continues to work as a digital organizer. He is the former Director of Marketing for Chalice Press and the Wild Goose Festival.
Originally from Colombia, Mara shares her culture with the Austin community by teaching at a bilingual school and now helping translate materials for the New Story Festival. She maintains a deep interest in spirituality that has lead her to explore different traditions and belief systems, but mostly she prefers to gaze at the stars.
eLYSIA VAN dEUSEN
Elysia Van Deusen’s credits include indie films and big studio pictures along with reality television, commercials, and industrials. She spent several years as a production coordinator, wrangling logistics and tracking budgets. These days Elysia spends her time looking at art, writing, painting, parenting, and shooting the occasional cable TV news interview.
Jones is a street canvasser for the Human Rights Campaign in Washington D.C. and M.Div student at Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary.
Jessica Percer is a homeschooling mom of three with a B.A. in English from University of Houston and an MDiv from Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary. She's lived in the Austin area with her family for nearly ten years. She's interested in minimalism, ethical fashion, and making the world a better place one step at a time.