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Changing Brains, Changing Lives, Symposium

October 24th 2018

The 4th annual Changing Brains, Changing Lives symposium will feature thought leaders in education and mental health exploring the topic of connection. How we connect with our brain, with others, and with our community. Join us as we empower our youth, our parents, our schools and businesses, and our community in strengthening our CONNECTIONS.

Strong Minds. Strong Connections. Strong Community.


2018 roster of best-selling authors and experts include:

Dr. Christopher Willard (PsyD)

Dr. Willard is a psychologist and educational consultant based in Boston specializing in mindfulness with young people.  He has been practicing meditation for nearly 20 years, and leading workshops internationally on the topic of mindfulness with young people. He currently serves on the board of directors at the Institute for Meditation and Psychotherapy, and is the president of the Mindfulness in Education Network. He is the author of Child’s Mind (2010) Growing Up Mindful (2016) Raising Resilience (2017) and three other books. He teaches at Harvard Medical School.

 Dr. Tina Payne Bryson (PhD)

Dr. Bryson is the co-author (with Dan Siegel) of The Yes Brain, as well as two New York Times Best Sellers:  The Whole-Brain Child and No-Drama Discipline.  She is the Founder and Executive Director of The Center for Connection in Pasadena, CA.  She keynotes conferences and conducts workshops for parents, educators, and clinicians all over the world.  The most important part of her bio, she says, is that she is a mom to her three boys. You can learn more about Dr. Bryson at, where you can subscribe to her blog and read her articles about children and parenting.

Michael Thompson

For over 20 years, Michael has been sharing his expertise in organizational leadership, child development and staff recruitment and retention though a unique lens developed through a wide-ranging career and the science-based framework of interpersonal neurobiology.  His insights are current and relevant to the emerging research that has shaped the evolving landscape of today’s communities and workplaces. Based in Austin, Texas and works as the US Director of Smaller Earth, an integrated global cultural exchange and travel company with 15 offices worldwide.

 Raj Sisodia

Raj Sisodia is FW Olin Distinguished Professor of Global Business and Whole Foods Market Research Scholar in Conscious Capitalism at Babson College, and Co-Founder and Chairman Emeritus of Conscious Capitalism Inc. He is co-author of the New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestseller Conscious Capitalism: Liberating the Heroic Spirit of Business and Wall Street Journal bestseller Everybody Matters. He was named one of “Ten Outstanding Trailblazers of 2010” by Good Business International, and one of the “Top 100 Thought Leaders in Trustworthy Business Behavior” by Trust Across America for 2010 and 2011.


Educators, mental health professionals, corporations, parents, and community members.

CEU Provider

CeDARs is an affiliate organization that provides CEUs through NAADAC for mental health and addiction professionals. Participants will receive 5.5 hours of CEU credits for the one-day conference. Educators will receive a certificate of attendance for the conference.

Location & Accommodation

The Intensive Workshop will will be from 8:30am to 2:30pm at the Gant Aspen including lunch, workshop sessions, and a panel discussion. 

The Evening community event will be hosted at the Wheeler Opera House from 5-7:20pm with 4: 20 minute talks and an organized panel discussion including speakers and community leaders.

Hotel accommodations are recommended at the Gant Hotel. Discounted rooms are available before September or until filled. Please inform them you are a symposium attendee.

Sponsorship Opportunities

If you are interested in being a sponsor for the 2018 Changing Brains, Changing Lives Symposium, please review 2018 Symposium Sponsor Packet or contact Christina King.

PLATINUM- $10,000+
GOLD – $5,000+
SILVER – $2,500+
BRONZE- $1,000+


Intensive Workshop Tickets:

Tickets cost $200. This price includes continuing credit certificate, morning coffee and teas, and lunch.

Purchase your tickets before September 24th for $185. Or before July 2nd for $165 (limited availability).

Community Event  Tickets:

Row 2&3: $2000 sponsored seat. Row 4&6: $1000 sponsored seat. Student tickets (must show ID) $15. General Admission: $40

All tickets can be purchased through the Wheeler Opera House.

CLICK HERE to complete a grant application. Approved applicants will be notified in September. 


Please contact Christina King at (970) 718-2842‬.



  • Lawrence Altman, CBD Trading & ASF donor.

    I realized younger in life that it was important to help other people any way I could. I have been involved in many causes that I thought were important, but mental health as dominated my interest. My own mental health struggles led me to a wonderful doctor and through him I started the Aspen Mental Health Fund which lead me to an amazing young woman Christina King. Christina brought the Aspen Strong Foundation idea to me. I was so impressed with her incredible energy and determination to make a difference in the world of mental health that it had become my passion as well. I believe we help many people who desperately need it. We are determined to rid people of the stigma of getting help for mental health issues. I am proud to be involved with Aspen Strong!

  • Ericka Anderson, MA LPC, Trauma Specialized Psychotherapist in Roaring Fork Valley & ASF Provider

    Because of Aspen Strong there is a place to turn to when someone needs help. I am deeply appreciative of their commitment to mental health in our valley.

  • Amanda Friend, Valley Settlement Project (2015 Symposium)

    I am so grateful to the Aspen Strong Foundation for bringing such amazing information and experts to our valley. I walked away from this symposium with a toolbox of strategies for immediate implementation that I use with my students, my children, and myself. I am a better parent, better teacher, and better self after this amazing experience.

  • Christopher May, Forum Phi founding partner and ASF event sponsor

    We felt that mental illness is under-addressed by society and Aspen Strong fills this gap locally. Your mind is an organ like any other and deserves treatment and resources. One single point of contact and coordination is especially helpful for the most in need, the young and the poor.