Last week, VidMob co-hosted an event in NYC with Facebook/Instagram, Smartly.io, Pixability, and Shutterstock called Creativist. We brought together extraordinary women to share stories and inspire each other to become change agents—in business, within our communities, and on a global scale.
What is a Creativist?
A Creativist, as we have come to define the term, is a fearless doer who harnesses the power of creativity and diversity to turn bold ideas into real change. In other words, a total badass.
There were three honored speakers who painted vivid pictures of what being a Creativist is all about: Aria Finger, CEO of DoSomething.org, Carly Leahy, Co-Founder / CCO Modern Fertility and Yasmeen Hassan, Global Executive Director of EqualityNow. Facebook’s Head of Agency Marketing, Ali Kane, shared powerful opening remarks.
Perspectives on Why Creativity Matters
Aria Finger delivered the first keynote, a rousing talk about how young people are changing the world. Gen Z is far more tolerant about social issues than generations past, and they are proving everyone who calls them lazy dead wrong. Aria is pioneering insanely creative ways to bring out the best in Gen Z in 131 countries and rallying 6 million teens and young adults to embrace volunteerism.
Carly Leahy spoke next. She charmed the room with stories about how she became inspired and empowered to found a company that solves a problem affecting one in six couples: fertility. This is a shockingly misunderstood topic by women (and men) and, despite their prevalence, fertility issues are widely stigmatized. Her company, Modern Fertility, is making it possible for women of all backgrounds and means to get a grasp on their fertility so they can make smarter, safer, and more informed choices about family planning.
Yasmeen Hassan, who leads EqualityNow and spoke at the UN General Assembly, closed out the program with a mesmerizing talk about the social injustices facing girls and women around the world. Yasmeen epitomizes the Creativist ethos as she is masterfully creative, totally fearless, and expert at building and leading diverse organizations. Yasmeen is changing the world one law at a time. She is also a mom, willing to dole out advice about how to get kids to do the dishes once in a while.
After the keynotes, I moderated a Q&A. One of my favorite questions was from a creative agency executive who said, “I feel in my gut that I have a calling to do big things—to create positive change—but I don’t know what my cause should be and I don’t know how or where to get started.” I turned to the crowd and asked who in the room has ever felt that way. Nearly everyone in the room raised a hand. An outpouring of sage advice followed. It all comes down to passion. That’s what makes you persevere.
My favorite saying, plastered all over the walls and decorative pillows, is “When passion burns brighter than fear, you can set the world on fire.” Find the thing that makes your heart swell with curiosity, compassion, or even anger, and you will be amazed how much you can accomplish. For me, personally, that is finding a cure for a brain disorder called Rett Syndrome that affects 350,000 girls and women, including my four-year-old daughter Sadie.
Creative on a Mission
Having the support from my amazing colleagues at VidMob to concoct something like Creativist makes me feel incredibly fortunate. VidMob is a mission-driven company and this event aligns perfectly with our vision to evolve creativity for the better. If you’re interested in being a part of a future Creativist event, drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This blog entry wouldn’t be complete without special thanks to the inimitable Sara Musselman, Creative Director at VidMob, who poured passion and soul into this event as evidenced by the flawlessly designed and executed branding.