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Dealing with the Past: A Necessary Step for the Survival of Democracy

In this webinar, co-hosted by Think Peace, Beyond Conflict, Alliance for Peacebuilding, and Mary Hoch Foundation, panelists will share U.S. and international experiences on how truth telling, healing and transformation is helping in rebuilding social fabric and trust that are essential for healthy democracies. Panelists will include U.S. practitioners actively engaged in local and national initiatives, as well as international actors who will speak to the experiences of South Africa and Colombia. Featured in this conversation, will be discussion of how brain and behavioral science can inform our patterns of dehumanization, empathy, and trauma, in relation to readiness for reconciliation.


  • An address by Representative Barbara Lee (D-CA)
  • Antti Pentikäinen, Executive Chair, Mary Hoch Foundation/Think Peace (Moderator)
  • Elizabeth Hume, Acting President & CEO, Alliance for Peacebuilding (Opening Remarks)
  • Dr. Gail C. Christopher D.N., N.D., award-winning social change agent, former Senior Advisor and Vice President of the W K Kellogg Foundation and past Executive Director of The Institute for Government Innovation at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University
  • Mary Burton, Former Commissioner of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) in South Africa, former President of Back Sash, Current Deputy Chairperson of the Council of the University of Cape Town.
  • Dr. Boaz Hameiri, Senior Lecturer in the Program in Conflict Management and Mediation at Tel Aviv University.
  • Dr. David Ragland, Co-founder and Co-Executive Director of the Truth Telling Project and the director of the Grassroots Reparations Campaign.
  • Esther Attean, Teacher, Activist, Social Worker, Co-Founder of the Maine Wabanaki-State Child Welfare Truth and Reconciliation Commission Process.
  • Tim Phillips, Founder and CEO of Beyond Conflict (Closing Remarks)