YTH Live: the youth + tech + health conference

2018 Plenary Preview

Opening Plenary

Day 2 Lunch Plenary

Sunday, May 6, 2018

Master of Ceremonies

Ryan Freeland, YTH Youth Advisory Board | After watching the documentary How to Survive a Plague, directed by David France, Ryan knew HIV/AIDS Prevention was going to become his future career field, as he realized stigmatization against any sexually transmitted disease cannot and will not continue to be associated with anomalous behavior – especially among youth. As a Research Assistant at The Center for Sexuality & Health Disparities, Ryan learned how he could academically advocate for the reduction of HIV/AIDS-related and LGBTQ+-related stigma by assisting in manuscript development and publication, presenting at the Population Association of America Conference 2016, and assisting in writing a NIH-funded grant – all specifically focused on HIV/AIDS prevention among the LGBTQ+ community. With these opportunities being closely aligned with his passions, Ryan is excited to see the forthcoming path of his adulthood career.

Currently, Ryan is a Master of Health Informatics second-year student at the University of Michigan School of Information. After he graduates in April 2018, Ryan strives to continue with his passions, specifically within the UX field, to create safer and healthier on-line communities for the LGBTQ+ community. During his free time, Ryan enjoys hiking with his partner, listening to Podcasts (This American Life is his favorite), and cuddling with his dog, Kylie. Please check out Ryan’s portfolio to see where he goes next in his future!

Opening Plenary

KEYNOTE: The Intersection of Technology and Social Justice

Keynote Speaker

George Hofstetter| George is a 17 year-old high school junior, a business entrepreneur, computer programmer, big brother, consultant, motivational speaker, and mentor.

George has participated in various tech events in his community and across the country. At the age of 13, George began his love for coding at Qeyno Labs Hackathon, an Oakland California based tech company.

By the age of 16 George had found his passion, combining social justice and technology. George then decided to start a tech company at the age of 16 years old, in hopes to help other kids of color gain entry into tech world as innovators not just consumers.

Youth Technology & Rights

A world that’s connected digitally brings with it opportunities and challenges, but those which youth can be empowered to negotiate with assurance and confidence. Young people’s safety in the online world is of critical importance, and an honest understanding comes in the context of the spectrum of their digital rights – an extension of their human rights. While youth have globally embraced digital media, with many stating that it has improved their lives, they also identify a range of risks and challenges associated with their practices. However, the challenges identified by youth may not always be the same as those that dominate adult discourses, or those targeted by public policy and regulations. The need to generate youth-centered definitions of youth rights, as well as the opportunities and risks associated with youth digital media use, are apparent more today than ever.

In the opening plenary panel, we will hear about the work being done by advocates and civil liberty groups, specifically the American Civil Liberties Union or ACLU, in advocating and fighting for the rights of our community in the digital world.
Following this we will hear from a panel of youth leaders who will reflect upon the extent to which they use digital media and information and communication technologies in their everyday lives – their motivations, their rights, and how these might be enhanced and/or challenged. These young leaders will explore the opportunities and challenges that digital media present in enacting their basic rights.


Jake Snow, ACLU | is a Technology and Civil Liberties Attorney. He works on a variety of issues, including consumer privacy, surveillance, and the preservation of free speech online.

Before joining the ACLU of Northern California, Jake was a Staff Attorney in the San Francisco office of the Federal Trade Commission, where his work covered the full breadth of the FTC’s mission. His consumer-protection work resulted in millions of dollars of judgments for consumers in false-advertising actions. Jake’s health-care antitrust work preserved competition between health-care providers in Central and Southern California.

Jake also litigated intellectual property cases at Orrick, Herrington, & Sutcliffe. While at Orrick, Jake was a member of the trial team that won a jury verdict invalidating a series of online-backup patents asserted by a non-practicing entity, Oasis Research. The Oasis Research case and trial were featured on the radio program This American Life in two episodes titled When Patents Attack.

Jake also served as a law clerk to Ronald M. Whyte, U.S. District Judge for the Northern District of California. He holds a B.A. in Physics from the University of California at Berkeley and a J.D. from Georgetown Law

Youth Panel:

Desire Forte, BIZ Stoop | Desire Johnson-Forte, 26, is a social entrepreneur from Oakland, CA. She is the founder of the the Black Intergenerational Zeal (BIZ) Stoop – an education consulting, lifestyle curation, youth development module that shifts barriers of ability-bias. Since 2015, the BIZ Stoop has been able to acquire nearly $35k in small grants and contracts to leverage equitable resourcing options for Black/Afro-Diaspora youth. Concurrently, she is the owner of Damn Good Teas a naturally herbal hydrating beverage that is lightly sweetened with real honey and stevia: these “living teas” are distinguishingly delicious! Desire earned her BA in English (emphasis Creative Writing) and minor in Ethnic Studies from Mills College in 2013. She is an alumni of the Youth Impact Hub, Youth Business USA, and budding philanthropist with the Pollination Project: “Solution-oriented minds – strategize! – my proverb.”

Shawn Reilly, YTH Youth Advisory Board | While at Vanderbilt, they have been instrumental in successful campaigns to gain gender inclusive bathrooms, housing, and other accommodations to support transgender and gender expansive students on campus. In Nashville, Shawn helps to coordinate the Nashville Feminist Youth Collective, and a young people’s LGBTQI group, Mobius. Reilly is a Posse scholar, Healthy Free TN Youth Advisory Board Member, and GLSEN Middle TN Chapter Leader. They have served on the Youth+Tech+Health Youth Advisory Board for three years, and served as the YTH Live 2017 Master of Ceremonies.

Other than organizing efforts, Reilly enjoys creating and crafting, watching documentaries, raising succulents, and hanging with their cats, Camus and Frankenstein. You can find Shawn on Twitter at @sjshawnreilly.

Martevia Bledsoe, YTH Youth Advisory Board| Martevia is a recent graduate from University of Alabama at Birmingham with a Bachelor of Science in Public Health with a minor in Medical Sociology. Martevia is public health scholar and has worked with the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and Columbia University in New York through an intensive summer internship where she was involved with numerous programs and initiatives that targeted increasing access to resources that can decrease health disparities for minorities. As a health activist, her biggest passions include minority health, preventive medicine and health education as she advocates for better health outcomes in minority and disadvantaged populations as well as promotion of a healthier lifestyle and life choices. Martevia also served as a research assistant with the National Center for Children in Poverty (NCCP) with the Columbia Mailman School of Public Health in New York where she conducted research that examines the health disparities that affect low-income families from a lack of coverage from state and national policies that concern paid and unpaid family leave, pregnancy discrimination, and breastfeeding accommodations.

Martevia is relentlessly passionate about serving as a resource and empowering others to reach their highest potential. From her undergraduate experience with community engagement and coordinating large-scale service and community projects through numerous executive leadership positions, she stands firm in her belief that being the change that you want to see in the world and investing in those around her is what makes every moment worth it. When she isn’t thinking of a master plan on how to save the world, you can probably find her freely satisfying her shopping habits and taste buds.

Yaira Matos, YTH Youth Advisory Board | Yaira Matos is an activist and organizer passionate about health equity and social medicine. Initially trained as a reproductive justice advocate, she continues to work towards political and material interventions for increasing access to health care for the most marginalized people in her community.

Yaira joined YTH’s Youth Advisory Board to creatively explore and use her perspective to build on the power of technology to create opportunities for expanded access to the knowledge and resources that individuals and communities need to be in control of their health.

Jarrod Jeffcoat, YTH Youth Advisory Board | Jarrod Jeffcoat is majoring in International Relations and minoring in Statistics at American University in Washington, DC. Despite his difficult childhood, which included a brief stint of homelessness, he has persevered by transforming his adverse experiences into opportunities to learn and grow. Interested in data collection, national security, and technology, Jarrod is currently working on a project investigating the viability of utilizing drones to map and evaluate neighborhood conditions in Washington, DC.

In high school, Jarrod led the fight against tobacco companies with the Truth Campaign and The Evolvement New Mexico. Additionally, Jarrod serves as a Vice-Chair for Model UN conferences at American University. A long-time resident of Albuquerque, New Mexico, Jarrod loves green chile, hiking, reading, and HBO’s Game of Thrones.

Monday, May 7, 2018


Youth Talk Tech

What does the future of technology look like for a young person? In this plenary conversation, members of the YTH Youth Advisory Board will ask the YTH Technology Advisory Board about their burning questions around the future of technology, technology’s role in the future of young people’s lives, and concrete ways to bridge the gap between young people and technology. Moderated by Muluba Habanyama, a YTH YAB member and seasoned journalist, come prepared for a great conversation of learning!


Muluba Habanyama, YTH Youth Advisory Board | Muluba Habanyama was born HIV positive, and 22 years later she is now a youth HIV/AIDS advocate. Since disclosing her status on YouTube in December 2014, Muluba has been featured in various Canadian publications including The Toronto Star, The Ottawa Valley, and more. She also wrote her own feature with MTV’s Staying Alive Foundation. Muluba was recently awarded a Black Women Moving Forward award for her advocacy work. She was also chosen as the Honourary Chair for the Peel 2015 AIDS Walk and is the national ambassador for Kisses 4 CANFAR.

Muluba continues to volunteer for various organizations including the Peel HIV/AIDS Network and Women’s Health in Women’s Hands. She currently studies journalism at the Sheridan College Institute of Technology. Through public speaking, social media, and a passion for educating, engaging, and empowering youth, Muluba brings a unique and valuable perspective to the YTH Youth Advisory Board.


Janaya Greene, YTH Youth Advisory Board | Janaya Greene is a journalist, photographer and student who majors in Public Affairs Journalism with minors in Media Production and Analysis, and African American and African Studies at The Ohio State University. She currently is a Journalism Intern with Ohio State’s College of Public Health. Janaya worked as a VICE Media and Center for Communication Summer 2016 Editorial Fellow and most recently worked as an Audio & Video Production intern with Dynasty Podcasts in Chicago this summer. The Southside Chicago-native is dedicated to giving voices to forgotten communities and those deemed voiceless through her multimedia reporting. Janaya also wrote a short film, Veracity, that was presenting on Hulu and Showtime networks.

She enjoys reading comic books and studying crystal healing to promote spiritual growth in her free time. Read Janaya’s writing and follow her on Twitter at @janayagr.

Monique Nguyen, YTH Youth Advisory Board| Last year as a San Francisco Fellow, Monique chose a project to enhance the quality of coordinated healthcare services with the Department of Public Health. She streamlined data processes and visualizations for reduced hospital stay expenditures and for improved quality and scope of services. Hearing personal testimonies from the providers and patients, further grounded her purpose: to empower people and data-driven innovation in the presence of convoluted systems and policies for efficient resource utilization while considering the impact on individuals, social threads, and sustainable solutions.

Monique currently conducts research at Stanford’s Center for Policy, Outcomes, and Prevention to assess how health policy and technology, mobile communications, and the Internet of Things can improve marginalized populations’ access to quality, inclusive, preventive health services. Monique especially finds meaning in projects related to sustainable healthcare innovation and improving healthcare access and education. In her free time, you can find Monique playing volleyball, making abstract art with conventional and unconventional materials, volunteering, or eating homemade snacks. She attempts to make funny puns, but please excuse her if they are terribly corny. Her last name is commonly pronounced “win:” with her puns, she wins some, she loses some. Connect with her on LinkedIN.

Trey Courts, YTH Youth Advisory Board| Trey Courts is a recent graduate of Louisiana Tech University where he majored in Family and Child Studies with a concentration in Family Science. While at Louisiana Tech, he was a part of an undergraduate research team called SHIFT, Sexual Health In Families Team. He presented research at several regional and national conferences including the National Sex Ed Conference on age appropriate sex education for children. Some of the research that he has been a part of includes; understanding sexual communication in families, communities, and context, gender socialization in the Southern United States, and the cost of contraceptives in Ruston Louisiana.

Trey has also done an internship with D.A.R.T., the Domestic Abuse Resistance Team, and worked with children and in the community spreading awareness on Domestic Violence and Teen Dating Violence. He also did an internship at The Children’s Coalition of Northeast Louisiana, where he worked under the Youth Development Coordinator. During his time at the Children’s Coalition he worked closely with Louisiana Public Health Institute to try to get youth friendly services more available and comprehensive sex education. When he isn’t working you can catch him watching Neil DeGrasse Tyson videos on Youtube.

Miriam Warren, YTH Board of Directors, Yelp | Vice President, Engagement, Diversity and Belonging

Nadir Vissanjy Strategy Manager for Healthcare, Government, & Education Partnerships, Lyft | Nadir Vissanjy serves as the Chief of Staff and Founding Director for Lyft’s Healthcare Team, LyftCare. Over the past year, Nadir led Lyft’s initiatives in the healthcare transportation sector by building meaningful partnerships with organizations in the continuum of care. These partnerships have made a monumental impact on breaking down transportation as an obstacle to accessible care.

He is a graduate of the dual degree program at MIT Sloan School of Management and Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government.

Prior to graduate school, Nadir served as a Congressional Aide for the Honorable Michael M. Honda representing Silicon Valley. Before his tenure in Congress, Nadir was the Strategic Campaigns Organizer for the Service Employees International Union Local 1021, representing 55,000 public sector employees in Northern California.

Prior to that, Nadir was a Coro Fellow in Public Affairs, Chair of the California State Student Association and President of the Associated Students of Sonoma State University. Nadir is the first in his family to graduate from college, where he was part of the inaugural class of the California DREAM Act students from Sonoma State University.

Nadir was born and raised in Lisbon, Portugal and spent his formative years in Northern California.

Eitan Bencuya Head of Product Communications, Square | Eitan is the Head of Product Communications at Square. He was most recently the Head of Communications at DoorDash and has held communications roles at Google, The Sierra Club and The Pramana Collective. He holds a BA in English and a BS in Business Administration from the University of California, Berkeley.


Telehealth and PrEP

Telemedicine is a collection of means or methods for enhancing health care, public health and health education delivery and support using telecommunications technologies. With more than 95% of adults, and 100% of young adults between the age of 18-29 owning a cell phone in the United States, a technology-based health intervention can be available to hard-to-reach populations or underserved areas.

Panelists will engage a rich dialogue and showcase innovative and effective ways to create prevention programs for HIV and STDs using the potential telehealth can offer, specifically with linking young people to HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis, or PrEP. This plenary brings together leaders in the field of HIV prevention, research and policy along with private organizations and companies that are currently active on the field of biomedical prevention.


Dr. Jeffrey Klausner | After watching the documentary How to Survive a Plague, directed by David France, Ryan knew HIV/AIDS Prevention was going to become his future career field, as he realized stigmatization against any sexually transmitted disease cannot and will not continue to be associated with anomalous behavior – especially among youth. As a Research Assistant at The Center for Sexuality & Health Disparities, Ryan learned how he could academically advocate for the reduction of HIV/AIDS-related and LGBTQ+-related stigma by assisting in manuscript development and publication, presenting at the Population Association of America Conference 2016, and assisting in writing a NIH-funded grant – all specifically focused on HIV/AIDS prevention among the LGBTQ+ community. With these opportunities being closely aligned with his passions, Ryan is excited to see the forthcoming path of his adulthood career.

Zen Chu | believes that now is the best time in history for healthcare entrepreneurs and engineers to create tech-enabled products and services to help medicine scale and serve more patients with higher quality at lower cost. He created Hacking Medicine Institute and MIT-Harvard Healthcare Ventures courses. He founded four medical technology companies and has been first investor in many high growth med tech/digital health companies through AccelMed Ventures.

Dr. Bhupendra Sheoran | is a passionate public health expert with over 20 years of experience serving vulnerable populations. He has worked in many countries in varying roles with nonprofit agencies, the UN, and academic institutions. Sheoran leads YTH to develop innovative solutions for youth health and wellness. He has designed, implemented, and evaluated many technology and new media interventions. He provides strategic capacity building assistance to agencies that want to apply these technologies to their work especially in sexual and reproductive health focusing on youth.

Dr. Michael Ohl| is an Associate Professor in the Division of Infectious Disease at the University of Iowa and an Investigator in the Center for Access and Delivery Research and Evaluation (CADRE) at the Iowa City VA. His research focuses on telehealth systems for HIV prevention and care delivery in rural US. He is Medical Director of the Iowa TelePrEP program and PI of a cluster-randomized trial to evaluate a telehealth model for HIV care delivery in Veterans Health Administration.

René Quashie| focuses his practice on telehealth, digital health, and mobile health. He helps stakeholders — including hospitals, health systems, and companies— handle legal, regulatory, and policy challenges impacting telehealth and digital health. His areas of focus include compliance with state and federal laws affecting the practice of telehealth and digital health, state and federal legislation involving providers, employers, payers, and telehealth/digital health companies and contract negotiations involving providers, employers, payers, and telehealth/digital health companies.