Speakers: November 2, 2022 @ Block One Events

BrainChange #2

Aquiles Quiroga

Multilingual local musician Aquiles Quiroga has been sharing stages with international and national artists since 2011. These opportunities led him to ramp up popularity in the local scene packing venues in the area with his bands: Manabí Latin Band and Denver's premier Iron Maiden tribute act Maiden Denver.

During the pandemic in 2020 he pushed for a fresh new start with his original project with McKenna Reeve and Hannah Rodríguez (The Cuddies) mixing their influences in the band's sound.

The band performs original material in Spanish, English and Italian plus their own version of covers. Most of these covers have been re-written in the other language including known Spanish rock hits and also rock anthems from Foo Fighters, Radiohead, Steppenwolf and Goo Goo Dolls to name a few.

Ariana Friedlander

Ariana Friedlander, MPA, is an award-winning organizational anthropologist, leadership development expert and author. She is the founder and principal of Rosabella Consulting. Ariana has over 20 years of experience fostering positive change within organizations and companies of all shapes and sizes. She specializes in modeling shared leadership and navigating co-creating conversations that lead to new innovations by applying the latest research in the Neuroscience of Conversation®. Through her flagship program, Co-Creating Retreat Experiences, Ariana provides master facilitation for collaborative teams that want to improve their communications and their impact. Ariana earned her master’s degree in organizational leadership from the University of Delaware.

Silen Wellington

Silen Wellington (they/he) is sculptor of sound, artist of people, gender liminal shapeshifter, mercurial name collector, restless poet, and storyteller, among other things. They found their way to wholeness and self-love through mostly "alternative" means, namely: guided rites of passage journeys, performance art, unhinged-unfettered-unapologetic dance, and connections with fiercely humble Elders & mentors who shared some of Silen's marginalized identities. A lover of thresholds, Silen is a transgender, queer Scorpionic initiation seeker, who experiences varying degrees of (quasi-spiritual) madness sometimes self-labeled as neurodivergence. Silen serves as a Peer Support Advocate for the Yarrow Collective and as an LGBTQ+ Coordinator for the Alliance for Suicide Prevention of Larimer County.

Jice Johnson

Jice Johnson is the Founder and CVO of the Black Business Initiative and Co-Founder of the New Community Transformation Fund - Denver. Jice is a U.S Army Veteran, a mother of three, and an astute businesswoman based in Denver, Colorado. A native of Oakland, California, Jice graduated Cum Laude with a Master’s Degree in Organizational Management and Leadership from Amridge University. Jice has dedicated her life to building a strong economic base in the Black Community. Playing a vital role as an advocate, she empowers Black entrepreneurs, leaders, and professionals with the information and tools needed to have an intergenerational stake in economic equity and liberation.

An economic developer with a focus on racial equity, Jice is recognized as one of Denver Business Journal’s Top 40 under 40, Denver Urban Spectrum African Americans who make a Difference awardee, Colorado Black Women for Political Action emerging leader, and Urban Leadership Foundations of Colorado awardee. Her work has also been featured in Denver Business Journal, Westward, and 9 News. As one of Denver’s celebrated business owners, touching entrepreneurs nationwide, Jice is passionate about closing the racial wealth gap and creating opportunities for intergenerational wealth. You can find Jice traveling or enjoying the beautiful outdoors with her children and dog.

Leah Johnson

Leah Johnson’s résumé includes the words Obama, Kay Hagen, and City Councilwoman, but what she has come to find out is that “mom” is the best title she’s ever added to her résumé. After a career that fueled her addiction to success and other things, life was dark, and something had to change. Forced to take a step back, she re-evaluated her priorities and started fresh in many ways. Now she lives with the freedom to be herself and know how far from perfect she is. As an imperfect mother of two, she sometimes says bad words, frequently forgets to pack snacks for preschool, and on occasion, her kids eat popsicles for breakfast. But she knows she is doing the best she can, and that is all people can do on their journey. She had a whole lot of traumas early in life that made the middle part tough. But through an intense spiritual awakening, a reevaluation of priorities, and kicking a few addictions, Leah has confronted her trauma, found a way to pull herself out of the depths of sadness, and finds herself on a lifelong journey to build a self-advocacy campaign to constantly find fantastic joy.

Leah grew up in Loveland, Colorado, and has an undergraduate degree from Boston University, and half of a master’s degree in Public Policy and Administration from Northwestern University (because, well, sometimes you just don’t finish things). She has had a 20-year career in campaign politics and public affairs. Her little family unit is everything to her and she spends every free moment she can with them traveling the world or having dance parties in their kitchen.

Kristen Truman-Allen

Dr. Truman-Allen is an Executive Coach serving leaders and their teams. She brings her experiences as Executive Leader, Emergency nurse, Outward Bound expeditionary learning instructor and Organization Development professional into her coaching. Kristen has master's degrees in Nursing Education and Organization Systems and completed her doctoral dissertation on the power of using metaphors in coaching to evoke lasting transformation.

Kristen utilizes expeditionary and experiential methodology to evoke personal transformation, team and leadership development as well as organization experience strategy. As a business owner, wife and mother of four children she is passionate about revolutionizing the leadership experience to living and leading with energy, connection and results.

Becca Walkinshaw

Becca Walkinshaw (She/Her/Hers) wanted to quit drinking yet was socially and emotionally addicted to what she believed it brought to her life. She was a successful leader but often felt stuck and muted in how she served and she continually searched for deep, authentic connection with others.

For several years she danced in and out of the negative cycles of depression, shame and poor self worth. After years of searching for the antidote to her pain, she found freedom in hiring a mindset coach!

Coaching helped her design an alcohol free life she loves, while creating a solid marriage and business she is passionate about! Now her mission is to support 1M influencers to do the same.

Jen Cooper

My name is Jen Cooper.

My professional life is one of service-with 24 years at Larimer County’s largest behavioral health care agency, and 29 total years of dedicated service in non-profit behavioral health. I have spent the majority of my career as a therapist and have evolved into a manager of newer programs and teams that help to expand behavioral health services beyond the walls of the community mental health center.

Through the years, my work has also included mentoring, advocacy, and also teaching by facilitating both Mental Health First Aid and QPR (a suicide prevention program).

I am proud beyond words of the work that fills my days.

Truly, my passion is people. I am humbled to do the work I do and am confident that I have learned my greatest life lessons through the people I get to meet and work with every day.

My personal life is filled with a love of the outdoors, a commitment to kindness, and with fun times with family, friends, and my loving partner. I am a proud graduate and steering committee member of Leadership Fort Collins, a BeKind Foco board member, and an active community volunteer. With my daughter as my inspiration and shining star… I live a life filled with gratitude and joy.