S3, E2: Difference Makers – David Flink

David Flink

David Flink was determined no other neurodivergent kids should have to endure the stigma of learning disability, leading him to found Eye to Eye, a nationwide nonprofit created by and for people who learn differently, with the goal of promoting a more equitable and inclusive world for people with learning differences.

S3, E1: Difference Maker — Penn Holderness

Penn Holderness

Imagine you’ve enjoyed a successful career in TV journalism anchoring newscasts, hosting a popular show on HGTV, and working for ESPN, but you’ve grown weary of the gloom and doom of the daily news blotter.

What do you do?

Jump onto YouTube and create your own reality of parody songs, zaniness and good cheer. Or at least that’s what Penn Holderness did, making it a family affair with his wife and kids, sharing their abundant love and a good time with the world.

S2, E11: Difference Maker – Carmen Agra Deedy

Carmen Agra Deedy

After her family had fled Cuba and Castro’s tyranny in the 1960s, Carmen Agra Deedy landed in a small Georgia town. There she ran headlong into the tyranny of the written word and numbers. For years, she believed she was dumb. Later, as an adult, she discovered two things: First, she wasn’t dumb at all; Read More…

S2, E10: Difference Makers – Tova Sherman

If you looked up the phrase “force of nature” in the dictionary it wouldn’t be surprising to find a referral entry that reads: See Tova Sherman. Growing up in a family where disability was familiar, Sherman struggled in school and with her path until she learned to harness her ADHD and channel it into a career fighting for diversity and inclusion providing a voice for the voiceless in Canada.

S2, E9: Difference Maker – Avi

Avi-KWarde

As part of a family that produced writers since the 19th century, you might say Avi was born to write. Unless you knew him in grade school, where Avi struggled with spelling, sloppiness, and reversing letters on his school work as a result of dysgraphia, a learning disability characterized by problems with writing. Yet, his Read More…

S2, E8: Difference Maker – Dr. Shawn Anthony Robinson

Dr. Dyslexia Dude

Perhaps you’ve heard of dyslexia described as a superpower. Well, Dr. Shawn Anthony Robinson took that literarily. By day, Robinson serves as a senior research associate in Wisconsin’s Equity and Inclusion Laboratory at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. But whenever ignorance and confusion regarding dyslexia rears their ugly heads, Robinson abandons his guise as a mild-mannered, Read More…

S2, E7: Difference Maker – Jennifer Ford Knopf

Jen Knopf

Jennifer Ford Knopf knew her son Reed was curious and bright. But she also knew he wasn’t thriving in school as she’d expected. The answer why came four years ago with a dyslexia diagnosis. That diagnosis fueled the Orlando mother and practicing attorney’s passion to help her son, a passion that mushroomed into a mission Read More…

S2, E6: Difference Maker – Jeanne Betancourt

Jeanne Betancourt

Growing up, Jeanne Betancourt struggled to learn to read and write.  Her struggle to master those skills led her to hone in on the world around her, soaking up details. Years, later, Betancourt discovered a passion for making up stories and writing them down. Good thing. Betancourt parlayed her storytelling into a successful career as a children’s book author, a chapter in her life that she credits her dyslexia for authoring.

S2, E5: Difference Makers – Ulysses Owens Jr.

Ulysses Owens Jr - Soul Conversations

For Ulysses Owens Jr., the three Rs often was accompanied by a backbeat as he often passed time in class treating his desk as a drum kit. He was later diagnosed with ADHD, but the little drummer boy parlayed his BAR-RUMP-A-THUMP-THUMP into becoming the first African-American drummer admitted into The Juilliard School and later into a Grammy Award-winning jazz career.

S2, E4: Difference Maker – Meredith O’Connor

Meredith O'Connor

In 2013, as a 16-year-old, Meredith O’Connor stepped out from the shadows of bullying with the YouTube release of The Game, part music video, part therapy session that shared her personal experience and trauma. Since then, O’Connor, who has ADHD and OCD, spent years touring schools and sharing her experiences, while releasing charity songs to benefit mental health groups and hitting the high notes as a formidable advocate for anti-bullying and mental health.