2016 Stage Program

This year's event is all about asking questions, the importance of conversation and dreaming big. Our program will help us realize the unmatched power of asking “what if” in health and medicine.  





What if we could expose and confront invisible threats to health?

Session 1  |  Wednesday, November 30  | 5:00–8:00pm PT
It’s getting easier for us to monitor and keep track of our health data—but what about the influences on our health that we can’t (or won’t) see and measure? Topics considered for this session include suicide, pandemics, trafficking, environmental toxins, and poverty.

Bruce Schneier
Health Data Watchman
Carolyn Jones
Photographic Ethnographer
Emtithal "Emi" Mahmoud
Refugee Bard
Gunhild Stordalen
Special Envoy for People and Planet
Jeremy Farrar
Global Health Reformer
Mona Hanna-Attisha
Pediatric Public Health Whistleblower
Richard Kogan
Music-Medicine Connector
Sue Klebold
Activist Mom
Susie Baldwin
Human Rights Physician


What if visionaries ruled the world?

Session 2  |  Thursday, December 1  |  8:00–10:00am PT
All 25 Hive entrepreneurs will take the stage to share how their visionary ideas and innovations are affecting change in every area of health and medicine. This session will feature disruptive thinking applied to therapeutics for aging and the microbiome, new tools for diagnosing cancers, accessible models of global philanthropy, creative methods for delivering care to those in need, engaging public health initiatives, managing long-term disease, and much more.

Their work will be shared in short, 2 minute talks illuminating the powerful and central idea at the foundation of their innovation, given across four mini-themes, that link common threads from each game-changing idea:

  • Tremendously Tinywill explore small-scale innovations with big scale implications
  • Zoom out: highlights ideas that emerge when we seek broader perspectives
  • Public Spirit: merges altruistic vision with entrepreneurial ingenuity
  • Curveball: introduces creative disruption engaged with age old problems.

Joining this session is newly announced Sam Maher, our Transcendent Handpanner. His innovative and unique melodies are played on an emerging instrument, the handpan, which will complement the intriguing ideas presented during this session. To learn more about Sam and his music, check out his bio

The Hive Innovators:

Megan Klimen, 3Scan  |  Christian Braemer, Benefunder  |  Ricky Solorzano, BioBots  |  Mark Zhang, Cake  |  Rajaie Batniji, Collective Health  |  Jake Porway, DataKind  |  Carole Ho, Denali  |  Nick Conley, EpiBiome  |  David Lucchino, Frequency Therapuitics  |  Lawrence "Rusty" Hofmann, Grand Rounds  | Anna Thomas, Hale Health  |  Tanzeem Choudhury, HealthRhythms  |  Sandy Jen, Honor  |  Hannah Bayer, Kavli HUMAN Project  |  Kevin Tyan, Kinnos  |  Jennifer Schneider, Livongo Health  |  Meghan Coakley, NIH 3D Print Exchange  |  Griffin Myers, Oak Street Health  |  Carolyn Edelstein, OpenBiome  | Laura Indolfi, PanTher Therapeutics  |  Ben Hwang, Profusa  |  Thompson Aderinkomi, Retrace Health  | Andrew A. Radin, TwoXar  |  Nathaniel David, Unity  |  Chase Adam, Watsi

Sam Maher
Transcendent Handpanner


What if we possess the knowledge to be the architects of our aging and (eventual) deaths?

Session 4  |  Thursday, December 1  |  2:00–3:45pm PT
We’ve made significant strides in understanding exactly what happens to our bodies as we age. Might we master our bodies and soulful understanding of self to the point that we will determine the way we die? Topics considered for this session include the caregiver crisis, dementia, the neuroarchitecture of memory, and the science of aging.

Caitlin Doughty
Progressive Mortician
Cheryl Steed
Prison Psychologist
Nir Barzilai
Longevity Scientist
Tomás Ryan
Memory Detective
Lucy Kalanithi


What if we re-examine the way we frame health challenges?

Session 3  |  Thursday, December 1  |  10:30am–12:15pm PT
Might this approach yield effective solutions to seemingly unsolvable problems? Marcel Proust wrote, “The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes.” Topics considered for this session include the treatment of rare diseases, homelessness, robotic vision, and mental illness with fresh paradigms.  

Jay Walker
Perpetual Innovator
Kafui Dzirasa
Brain Engineer
Charles Chiu
Precision Diagnostician
Kaitlyn Hova
Synesthete Translator
Lloyd Pendleton
Homelessness Vanquisher
Sharon Terry
Citizen Biomedical Researcher
Sheila Nirenberg
Visionary Neuroscientist


What if the outer edges of human experience could provide solutions to everyday challenges?

Session 5  |  Thursday, December 1  |  6:00–8:00pm PT
Often, our mental constructs and perceived limitations hinder our search for inspiration. What if we made a point of venturing into the most unusual and unexpected places for answers? Topics considered for this session include sexual deviance, extreme altruism, artistic patients, and wild adventures.

Elizabeth Letourneau
Sexual Abuse Preventionist
Jennifer Pluznick
Sensory Receptor Hunter
Larissa MacFarquhar
Human Character Investigator
Sarah Outen
Global DIY Adventurer
Sujey Morgan
Facial Sculptor
Ted Meyer
Artistic Patient Advocate


What if we could create a stronger culture of health by addressing its social and environmental factors?

Session 6  |  Friday, December 2  |  9:00–10:45am PT
We know that circumstances like where we are born, grow, live, and work can shape not only individual health, but the health of a community. But, that’s not where social determinants of health stop—there’s a whole social side to health we’re still discovering. Speakers in this session will explore different influences on our health, including poverty, race, nature, mindset, and music.

Alia Crum
Mindset Researcher
David Casarett
Doctorly Detective
David R. Williams
Public Health Sociologist
Johannes Haushofer
Money Behaviorist
Ketki Karanam
Musical Decoder
Kristin Neidlinger
Expressive Tech Fashion Designer


What if we found beauty while confronting difficult truths?

Session 7  |  Friday, December 2  |  1:00–2:30pm PT
As the adage goes, every cloud has a silver lining. Beauty in suffering may not be apparent at first, but what can happen when we stumble upon it and then share it with others? Topics considered for this session include compassion, disability, a new genre of video games, and neuroaesthetics.

Anjan Chatterjee
Carolyn Jones
Photographic Ethnographer
Dan Visconti
Innovative Civic-Minded Composer
James Gordon
Global DIY Healing Teacher
Partho Sengupta
Physician Holographer
Ryan Green
Narrative Gamer