Janet Mock, writer, director and executive producer of the critically acclaimed FX series Pose, who made history with her landmark overall Netflix deal, will be joining ComNet19 on Thursday, October 3rd for a keynote conversation with The Washington Post's Jonathan Capehart

“I believe that telling our stories, first to ourselves and then to one another and the world, is a revolutionary act. It is an act that can be met with hostility, exclusion, and violence. It can also lead to love, understanding, transcendence, and community.”

“There is no formula when it comes to gender and sexuality. Yet it is often only people whose gender identity and/or sexual orientation negates society’s heteronormative and cisnormative standards who are targets of stigma, discrimination, and violence. I wish that instead of investing in these hierarchies of what’s right and who’s wrong, what’s authentic and who’s not, and ranking people according to these rigid standards that ignore diversity in our genders and sexualities, we gave people freedom and resources to define, determine, and declare who they are.”

- Janet Mock, Redefining Realness


Stacey Abrams, the activist, author, civil rights leader, lawmaker, and first African-American woman to deliver a response to the State of the Union will be joining ComNet19 on Friday, October 4th for a keynote conversation.

"My audacity, I would say, is driven by wanting to tackle the system. Not simply the problem. I think you have to do both.

"We will all, at some point, encounter hurdles to gaining access and entry, moving up and conquering self-doubt; but on the other side is the capacity to own opportunity and tell our own story."

Stacey Abrams discusses her book "Minority Leader" at Politics and Prose. The first woman to lead either party in the Georgia General Assembly, the first African American to lead in the House of Representatives, and now a candidate in the 2018 Georgia gubernatorial race, Abrams knows a lot about conventional skills like networking, persistence, and the value of mentors.

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Trabian Shorters is the founder of BMe Community, a New York Times bestselling author, and former Vice president of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, will be joining ComNet19 on Friday, October 4th for a keynote conversation.

“There are too many people in America whose worthiest aspirations and contributions are brutalized daily by relentless classism, racism, and assaults on their souls for repudiating the American myth by simply existing. We need to tell their story better.”

“You can’t lift people up by putting them down. For at least 50 years, governments, nonprofits, and foundations have collaborated to wage the War on Poverty, as well as wars on drugs and crime, by making black people the poster children for these menaces to society.

Today, it’s painfully clear that our 50-plus years of declaring ourselves the saviors and allies of people striving to get out of poverty or defying a racist society hasn’t convinced either group that we are in fact their saviors or even their allies.”

-Trabian Shorters, The Chronicle Philanthropy

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Florida Rights Restoration Coalition has been named the second winner of the Clarence B. Jones Impact Award. FRRC President and CEO Desmond Meade, one of TIME’s 100 Most Influential People of 2019, will be joining ComNet19 on Thursday, October 3rd for a keynote conversation.

“People who’ve paid their debt to society deserve a second chance and all studies show that once these people register to vote and take other steps to participate in society, their rate of recidivism and reincarceration drops dramatically,”

Desmond Meade President and CEO of Florida Rights Restoration Coalition led the successful push to restore voting rights to formerly incarcerated citizens. Watch him share his story about how the campaign for Amendment 4 came alive, his key supporters and what inspired him. Grounded in the 160-year legacy of the magazine, AtlanticLIVE brings the unparalleled journalism of The Atlantic to life through singular event experiences, on stage and off.