Michael H. Cook, Esq., is a partner and co-chair of the Health Care Group at the law firm of Liles Parker PLLC in Washington, DC. Michael practices law in the area of health care, and during his more than 40 years of practice has headed the DC office health care practices of several major national and international law firms. Michael has also served as an advisor on health care policy to the campaigns of candidates for national and state political office and has lectured and published extensively in the area. He currently serves of the Boards of the Center for Public Service and Scholarship at Shenandoah University, the Political Science Department of Temple University, and the Osteoporosis Foundation, and was appointed by the current Governor of Virginia to serve on the Board of the Department of Medical Assistance Services – the Department that administers Virginia’s Medicaid program.
Professor Robert C. Fellmeth, AB Stanford U., JD Harvard U., Price Professor of Public Interest Law at the University of San Diego School of Law, Executive Director of the Children’s Advocacy Institute since 1989, Board of the National Association of Counsel for Children since 1998 (President 2010-12), Secretary-Treasurer of the Partnership for America’s Children currently, Board of Public Citizen since 1994, former State Bar Discipline Monitor 1987-92, litigation re child rights (25 published appellate cases), legislative advocacy and sponsorship of child related statutes 1988-present, author of the law text Child Rights and Remedies (Clarity, 3d edition, 2013).
Gabrielle G. Gallegos is the Director of IT Policy at the Department of Homeland Security. Gabrielle has held a variety of government and private sector positions including General Counsel and Vice President of Human Resources for Indian Motorcycle Company; Head of Business Law at Brett & Daugert, LLP; and Counsel to the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Crime and Criminal Justice. Gabrielle worked as a Court Appointed Special Advocate for foster children in Caroline County, Maryland, and has extensive experience serving on non-profit boards focused on health policy and provision of healthcare services. Gabrielle holds an A.B. from Stanford University and a J.D. from Stanford Law School.
Judge Charles D. Gill, Connecticut Superior Court Judge, is a nationally recognized advocate of children’s rights. In 1988, he co-founded the National Task Force for Children’s Constitutional Rights. Judge Gill has appeared before Congress and the General Assembly of the United Nations. He provided expert commentary on CNN, lectured at leading universities, law schools, medical schools and medical associations, judicial conferences, and law enforcement training academies, including the FBI. Judge Gill is the recipient of many awards and commendations, including the U.S. Department of Justice’s Annual Crime Victim’s Award presented to him by President George Bush in the Oval Office. He has written extensively on children’s rights and has engendered several public television films concerning the treatment of children in courtrooms.
Gary Levine is a digital marketing consultant whose agency, WSIWebMark, has been defining and implementing digital marketing strategies for businesses and not-for-profit organizations since 2003. Gary began his career applying information technologies to improve businesses as a systems engineer for IBM in 1976. He was a successful executive with organizations including Wang Laboratories, Simpact Associates, and IKON Office Solutions, before becoming the Chief Information Officer of credit card processing company Card Systems Solutions. He holds a master’s degree in Quantitative Psychology from the University of Pittsburgh, and a Bachelor of Arts degree from Drew University. He lives in the Washington, DC, area.
Tracy Mazuer is an independent executive producer, writer and director who has produced hundreds of hours of content for most major broadcast networks as well as top-tier cable outlets. She holds a B.S. in Journalism and an MAed specializing in urban youth and autobiographical writing. She and her husband are the adoptive parents of a foster teen.
Peter Samuelson, Co-Founder and President of First Star, is a serial pro-social entrepreneur. In 1982 he co-founded the Starlight Children’s Foundation; by 1990 the positive psychological impact of Starlight seeded his next pro-social endeavor, Starbright World; 1999 saw the formation of First Star, 2005 EDAR Everyone Deserves a Roof, and 2013 saw him launch ASPIRE, the Academy for Social Purpose in Responsible Entertainment. In the midst of all this Peter has produced 25 films and raised four children. Educated at Cambridge and the Anderson School of Management at UCLA, Peter resides in Los Angeles with his wife Saryl, and continues to fight every day for those less fortunate, chief among them America’s abused and neglected children.
Adrien Sebro has worked as a mentor for the First Star UCLA Bruin Guardian Scholars Academy for foster youth in Greater Los Angeles since 2012. He now serves as the Program Coordinator of the academy. He graduated with his BA in Women’s Studies from UCLA, his MA in African American Studies from Columbia University IRAAS, and is currently a 2nd Year Ph.D Student in Cinema and Media Studies at UCLA.
Vince Thompson lives in Los Angeles and helps First Star with communications, partnerships and donor engagement. He’s lead sales organizations for AOL and Facebook, is a best-selling management author and has served as a startup company CEO and a public company board member. In addition to his work for First Star he invests and consults with his firm Middleshift. Thompson holds a degree in communications from USC and an MBA from Pepperdine University.