Ernestine Shepherd: an 80-year-old body builder who holds the Guinness World Record for Oldest Female Bodybuilder. Ms. Sheperd has a regimented schedule for working out, waking up at 2:30 a.m. every morning to run and get to the gym, according to a Facebook video from Great Big Story. She trains other women of all ages.
MoniCa Singh: a survivor of an acid attack and humanitarian who spoke at the United Nations and was appointed as Global Youth Champion by UN Women in 2016. Ms. Singh is the CEO of the Mahendra Singh Foundation, an organization which spreads awareness about acid attacks and offers support for victims.
Paresh Nath: a cartoon artist of The Khaleej Times in the United Arab Emirates. One of the artist’s political cartoons has recently been included in an ATTN: article titled “Cartoons Show How the Rest of the World Views Trump’s First Month in Office.”
Jennifer Bolande: an American artist for Desert X whose recent installation, Visible Distance / Second Sight, has gained coverage in the non-mainstream media. The installation consists of the replacement of billboards with photographs of the landscapes which they obstruct. The installation is located along Gene Autry Trail near Vista Chino, according to an article by Twisted Sifter.
Felix Finkbeiner: a 19-year-old German activist whose goal in life is to assist in global reforestation. He is the founder of the environment group Plant-for-the-Planet. According to a National Geographic article, with Plant-for-the-Planet and assistance from the UN’S Billion Trees campaign, Mr. Finkbeiner has planted more than 14 billion trees with a goal of one trillion. At the age of nine, he spoke at the United Nations General Assembly.
And just like that, we have the makings for an interesting evening with delightful food, brilliant people, and engrossing conversation. I suppose that much of the discussion would be on the topics of activism and expression. Both require a certain perseverance and passion which I have no doubt each of these people have. It would be interesting to observe if their personalities are similar or, at least, compatible. Perhaps Ms. Bolande and Mr. Fainbeiner would share their love of nature and its preservation, though in different ways. What would be most exciting is if the accomplishments and interests of each person inspired the others. Personally, when I meet people worth admiring, I later try to emulate the virtues I most like. In the end, being able to have that level of respect for another human being encourages each of us to be better people. I suppose this is one of the goals for HDP.